Friday, August 05, 2011

Unexpected Visitors (Another in an Irregular Series of Very Long Stories), Part The Last: Fairly Treacherous Snow

As evening drew to a close the night before, the batteries died in the camera, so, while others were able to snap pics with their new-fangled iPhones, I was left with nothing to offer in the way of visual accoutrement.

We arose later than I anticipated from our tents along Fern Lake, but, after breakfast and discussion, Laura decided to stay at the campsite, while Mike, Monkey and I trekked the three-quarters of a mile or so up to Odessa Lake. More altitude gain on this hike, but, with a base camp, we were able to walk unencumbered. It was a nice change of pace.

As we made our way, we continued to look back for satisfying views of Fern Lake below. We neared Odessa Lake and passed an older gentleman on his way back down. We hailed him. His report: "There's some fairly treacherous snow up ahead."

Inside, we all laughed. It seemed that at every turn someone was warning us of snow. Not only did it seem ridiculous in late July, but each report turned out to sound worse than it actually was. And this case was no different.

Arriving at the lake, we did have to cross a wide stream on a snow bank under cut by rushing water. It was a large patch of snow, maybe a couple hundred yards, maybe less, but it was solid and only as slippery as any snow one might encounter. So, we conquered that little obstacle and came upon another poster-worthy alpine lake. And more trout (definitely fishing next year). And a couple of better behaved ground squirrel.

We walked around the lake for a little while, then turned and made our way back to camp. We packed up, not forgetting to fetch our food out of the woods, and slung our burdens back up. Of course, most of this hike would be down hill, so a little easier to haul. We made it back to the car in good time and drove back to the brown cabin, where we all had well-deserved showers and porch front cocktails.

And another unexpected visitor: an elderly woman, out for an evening stroll, who promptly invited herself up to the porch to converse with us. After Laura fetched her a chair, she stayed for a lengthy spell. Honestly, not my favorite part of the trip, but she was harmless, and she told a few interesting stories. After she left, we ate, then turned in, trying not to think that tomorrow was the end of our trip.

Of course, Monkey was kind of looking forward to a visit to Chic-fil-a in Loveland on the drive back, so, there was a slight silver lining, I guess.

1 comment:

Monkey @ Life Refocused said...

As much as I hate leaving Colorado, I do love me some Chick-fil-A.