Bear Lakes Basin - Labor Day Backpacking 2018
This trip was almost a completely bust in terms of what we hiked and saw compared to what we wanted to hike and see. But, most important, it was a lot of quality time spent with good friends and lots of smiles, which is what counts.
Participants: myself, Richard Liu, Daniel Lin, Jack Tian, Brandon Yuan, Mr. Yuan, and Mr. Liu.
We drove up on only one car! The last two miles of the road was a 4wd road, so that part was really sketchy. We had to get out of the car several times to get enough clearance to get over some particularly rocky sections.
The "sketchy" trailhead
The first day was just a 10 mile slog in trees, with maybe 2-3k feet of uphill.
the less acclimatized were starting to feel it at this point
Jack having fun!
We weren't happy with our progress that day, so we decided to hike through the night to get closer to the point where the off-trail section began. That did mean we ate dinner at a non-campsite location.
cooking! richard brought a wood-burning stove (that I haven't seen being used again)
There aren't any pictures from that night. We were pretty bone tired.
Our campsite sunrise (when you hike in during the night, the morning view is ALWAYS a pleasant surprise!)
I think the cold dampened our excitement
Getting set to get the **** off that trail!
Turns out the first few miles of the off-trail section had a small use trail. So it was really pseudo-cross country hiking. It was pretty relaxing, and we took a break by a nice creek.
I think this picture is nice. Taken by Daniel Lin
Heading above treeline!
After the trip, there was a concerted patrol effort to submit a bit to the USGS to rename this peak to "Dragon Peak"
Mr. Yuan is having fun too
At this point, we lost the trail. It was kind of tough for the less-experienced members to adjust to the trial and error of xc hiking.
I liked this valley!
This is probably like my most favorite picture of myself!
We ended up turning back at Vee Lake. We had a nice relaxing break there! Richard did some wading, I played some Beach Boys, and we all lay down in the alpine grass for a while.
Our group photo, sans Mr. Liu who was taking the picture
This stuff is beautiful man, can't make this stuff up!
Eventually we had to dip back below tree line, and I think some of us were disappointed that we had spent so little time really enjoying the alpine country. But it was ok.
If you're wondering why Daniel is holding his hands like that, it's because he CAUGHT A ****ING FISH!
Yeah Daniel caught a fish in a small stream with his bare hands.
The altitude was really taking its toll on Jack :(
We headed out real fast that day. A mild end to a mild trip, but still really really great. For whatever reason, this one has a special place for me.