Sunday, May 20, 2018
Tossing and turning happens, with the anticipation of sunrise I make sure the last toss puts me inline for the sun peaking into the basin. I saw the first pink of new day on Dromedary Peak. I sat up. Sitting in a quilt is much like that of a mummy bag except the back can get cold. I snuck an arm into my puffy down jacket. After a bit, I flashed to pack with the intention of having coffee and breakfast on the rocks.
The fellow who camped near by was surprised that I was packed so early. A late night six pack of 20yr olds pitched a huge dome tent on the rocks and one had a 2 burner propane stove out cooking bacon. Where was their mule? No mule, they all took a chunk of group gear and time to get up here. PS they got in just after dark.
I laid out my quilt and ground sheet to dry in a light breeze. I struck the canister stove to boil water for an overnighter treat, mountain house sausage & eggs, followed by coffee. Not like what the kids were enjoying but, a treat for me. They missed out on the coffee.
Light blasted the Sundial. Day hikers made there way in. The morning, clear, perfect for a hike there and for myself, down.
Before I split, I took a look for trash. I found a cache of crushed beer cans, empty cigarette packs, and a bottle of ketchup. I didn't have a very big trash bag with me. I chose the near full bottle of ketchup since it's a food item and will attract rodents. I also kicked a part an illegal firepit. Why, oh why do people do this? There are multiple signs saying Pack it in, Pack it out. Also there is a permanent fire ban in this basin. Hundreds will hike this trail. Thousands will pass between Mrmorial Day and Labor Day. We all need to do our part of keeping pristine, pristine. End Rant.
I sit drinking more wake up juice in the afternoon, the gear is sorted and put away, clouds roll across the SL Valley. Rain follows.
Call this a micro-adventure (less than 24 hours) or call it a mock-overnighter. Call it a major event for some like the kids I met. The important thing is to get out there, get comfortable with the gear. Find an experienced friend, hook up with an outdoors group, or rent some stuff from an outfitter. Quit dreaming, go.
Liz Thomas, an established long distance hiker, writes an article on the how and why short adventures work... http://www.eathomas.com/2018/05/09/backpackingmockovernighter/ you'll need to copy and paste that line.
I also want to encourage all to be mindful of the trash (pick it up), respect others, and be wise with sharing online adventures. I'll highlight that one another day.
Micro adventures abound near SLC. I debated abound hiking up last night but, I held off, more on that later. Today, I debated when to go. I decided to skip Capital Church's afternoon and evening services. I stashed the pack from the bin, drove to the over flowing trailhead of Mill B or D. I'm forever getting these two mixed up.
I huffed and puffed a while, yes, I'm in shape but not the best of shape yet. I passed many a group going up and coming down on their day hike.
The Sun Dial came to view, dozens lounged on the rocks over looking the lake. I split to a camping area just out of sight. Lots of wet but, I did find a spot that is dry. I threaded my tent stakes into the ground with a given view of the peak.
As I set up another fellow asked where he could set up. My question of him is do you have a free standing tent. He does and he's in view of the masses and thankfully his tent is of muted colors. I hate the sight of bright tents up here, they make the place look crowded when it may only be one or two people.
I wandered a bit thinking of where I'll make my morning brew. Last night I found my way into the most expensive cup of coffes I'll ever enjoy, all of the cost for a conversation. I headed to one of my reading spots, finishing up, I took someone else's pate to the counter, struck up a conversation with another regular and the staff. He offered me a mug of private brew. The staff brewed it for him. This stuff is mellow, smooth, and nutty. A light roast with a unique processing, the coffee berries are fed to a particular kind of cat, then gathered, cleaned, and then roasted. Yeah, now when somome says coffee tastes like **** I'll respond if you have that kind of processed coffee I'd like a cup.
I'm set upon a rock watching light escape this basin, chilled, and enjoying sounds of waterfalls, birds, and the occasional passing plane. Snow covers most the high basin, Lake Blache's ice is spotty, doubtful it'd hold a fox any more. I ponder will I see moose in the morning?
Time to bounce to camp, grab the jacket. Time for a hot tea.
Hike On, Hoke Wise.