Tuesday, August 17, 2010

South Lake To North Lake Trip Report Day 3

Our plans had to change for day 3 since we didn't get as far as we wanted on Day 2. Our revised plan included going to Evolution Lake which was up and over Muir Pass and down about 6 miles on the other side. The whole day was 10 miles of hiking.

We woke up pretty early again and got going by 7:40 a.m. Breakfast included another Breakfast skillet. (It didn't taste quite as good but was just fine overall.) The hike was beautiful in the early morning cool air. It quickly warmed up as the sun hit us and we trudged along up the benches looking for the lakes. At one point Cameron and I took our packs off and cooled off on the granite that was still cool from the night. The mosquitoes were pretty bad in certain places and we applied quite a bit of deet to combat them.

The lakes had many crossings and each time I got a little more confident. Cameron danced across the rocks looking like he was a ballet dancer. I felt like I was slipping each time.
This is the view looking back down the Le Conte Canyon we had come from.
This is Helen Lake that we had wanted to camp at. After this lake we passed a large group of backpackers with 3 llamas who were heading down into Le Conte Canyon. There were about 10-15 teenagers and a 5 year old and 3 year old. There were only 1-2 older people and I am not sure who the parents of these kids were but everyone we talked to said they were all cousins. The three year old was riding a llama, still in her pajamas, and she was barefoot. They were all moving quickly but I was happy to not have my little ones with me as these seemed very out of place on the high mountain pass.
Here we are at the top of Muir Pass. They built a very nice rock hut in the 1930's to protect people against storms. Today you are allowed to camp in it only when there is a storm.
If you look out at those lakes the other side of Muir pass involved hiking in the alpine environment in the sun for the entire six miles to evolution lake. The only plants growing were no taller than the sole of my shoe. It was quite a barren place.
We arrived at Evolution Lake and found our spot among the crowded campgrounds. Our spot was high on the bench above the lake. We were able to find our own spot and didn't feel too crowded. We went swimming in the lake and Cameron nearly got hypothermia after he got out. He left his clothes on while swimming and then after did not take them off. The wind was blowing hard and cold and he just kept sitting there. Eventually I convinced him that he should get dressed by leaving myself to get dressed. At least he followed.

After we were clean and so were our clothes, Cameron prepared to go fishing. We wanted to have fish for dinner so he was highly motivated. I prepared to read for the afternoon. The wind blew so hard that afternoon that they tent stakes came out and the tent started to blow away. I put rocks on the stakes and then stayed in the tent so that it wouldn't blow away. Cameron caught lots of tiny 8 inch fish but couldn't catch any big fish. We decided to eat one of our dehydrated meals instead of fish since the fish were so small.
This is Evolution Lake in the Twilight
Another picture of Evolution Lake