Emigrant Wilderness Backpacking

This year we completed  a 35 mile backpacking trip starting Saturday, July 23 to Sunday, July 31. The participants: Chris Thompson with Liam. Wayne Colby with Wabbit. Frank Christian with Declan. Jean Crandall (mother of Kim). Kim Hunt with Shasta the Golden Retriever, Betty Cox (mother of Frank).

Red Canyon Lake July 28, 2011

The route was chosen for this year to take into account the large snow pack. We had snow drifts at each camp site that worked well for a refrigerator and for drink slushies. At Upper Buck Lake the snow drift behind our camp was up a side of the rock face mountain; enough for two of us to have a go at sliding down on a plastic bag. We had a few drifts of snow to contend with on the first week of backpacking; mostly through the pass from Deer Lake to upper Buck Lake.

On the trail Emigrant Wilderness July 2011

Our route from Red Canyon lake to Piute creek was the toughest part of the trip with the trail going for a couple of miles through a shady part of the canyon with lots of snow drifts crossing the path. The runoff of melted snow was past the peak, but the streams were still quite swollen, making it a bit of a challenge for the shorter of our group to cross. On a couple of creek crossing we stretched a rope across for balance and us taller hikers helped by escorting the women across. The IW’s did fine, needing only a little encouragement.  The weather was perfect, and I do mean perfect, it could not have being better. The days were in the middle  60’s, and the nights were mild. Fishing was a bit more of a challenge this year, but we did catch enough for Wayne Colby to BBQ a meal of rainbows for us. We also had a meal of fish soup from freshly caught trout. The day I had planned for fresh fish dinner we had only caught one fish, so Wayne and Chris collected wild onions for the soup, and I made the fish soup with cous-cous; it turned out delicious. Of note this year we had two Irish Wolfhound brothers of over six years of age showing the rest of us how to backpack. I would also like to mention that we had two sisters this year who are approaching 80 years old; My mother Betty Cox (79) and Her sister Jean Crandall (78). I can only hope I will still be able to hike like they can when I am that age. We had three IW’s this year: Wabbit Colby (a famous IW known for his backpacking ability) Wabbit’s brother Declan Christian (who is fearless when crossing high creek water), And Liam Thompson (all around nice guy, and camp host) We also had Shasta the Golden Retriever, who’s boundless energy and endless miles of swimming gained our notice (when we walked by a lake front, she would swim ). I would like to thank all the Participants; for it was truly their effort that made this year’s 9 day backpacking into the Emigrant Wilderness such a success.

Declan looking about Emigrant Wilderness 2011

Contact for more information about this trip: Frank Christian

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