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Snow & Azure Lakes, Desolation Wilderness Day Hike 9/26/

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Snow & Azure Lakes, Desolation Wilderness Day Hike 9/26/

Postby madeintahoe » Mon Oct 02, 2006 10:41 am

Last Tuesday I did a nice loop day hike to both Snow & Azure Lakes..we started at the Bayview Trailhead up to Snow Lake part on trail & part xcrountry. From Snow Lake it was xcrountry to Azure Lake. Hiked out from Azure up to the Bayview trail, down to Granite Lake & back to the TH. The weather was perfect! Sunny and warm almost hot...what a difference in weather today here in Tahoe :crybaby:
It was a fun hike & a big group 9 of us. A few pictures of the hike
http://outdoors.webshots.com/album/554507288hCppaK



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Postby giantbrookie » Mon Oct 02, 2006 5:09 pm

Nice photos and a nice hike. That route in looks very nice. My wife and I went to Azure/Snow/Tallac in 1989, and we did it coming in from Bayview and dropping down to Azure (then backtracking to Snow later). Your way in peeling off to Snow first, looks much more interesting (more off trail stuff) and direct.
Since my fishing (etc.) website is still down, you can be distracted by geology stuff at: http://www.fresnostate.edu/csm/ees/facu ... ayshi.html
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Postby hikerduane » Mon Oct 02, 2006 7:19 pm

mit, is the trail any better than it was in the 70's? It was xc then and you had to climb over boulders and alders etc. to get to the lakes coming up from the Bayview Trail. I heard years ago to take the trail past Granite Lake and before it meets with the trail up from Eagle Falls to drop off and it is only a short ways down to Azure? I sorta/kinda did that in reverse coming out of Azure one year, just not the way I wanted to go but the camping was nonexistent at Azure so I kept going. To Dicks Lake I think, it has been awhile and all my adventures seem to mix over the years.
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Postby Snow Nymph » Tue Oct 03, 2006 12:54 pm

Looks like some fun slab hiking! I will have to visit Snow Lake sometime. :D
Expose yourself to your deepest fear; after that, fear has no power, and the fear of freedom shrinks and vanishes. You are free . . . . Jim Morrison


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Postby Kerstin » Fri Oct 06, 2006 9:11 am

That was a great day! Thanks for posting the pictures! :)
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Postby madeintahoe » Mon Oct 09, 2006 10:56 am

Thank you everyone!

Giantbrookie...when we were at Snow Lake we were looking up at where Tallac Lake sits..I one day would like to get to that lake. Going to Snow 1st and then Azure I like better than the other way...you are right it is more off trail & was a very fun hike. How did you get to Tallac Lake? Kalmia is another one I would like to get to also

Hikerduane..I don't think I have ever been on that section of the trail in the 70's you mention...But the one you say dropping down into Azure before you get to the trail coming up from Eagle is in pretty good shape..that is the trail we hiked out of Azure that day..a lot of people don't even know that trail is there down to it..as when you are hiking past it..you really do not even notice it. Many years ago I started further down the trail going towards the Velmas..and dropped down to Azure..and it was a major bushwhack down to the lake..could that be the trail you talk about in the 70's?

SN....You would have loved this hike with the slab hiking..Yes one day you will have to see Snow Lake :)

Kerstin...It was a great hike, still can't get over Amily the dog
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Postby hikerduane » Thu Oct 12, 2006 5:49 pm

madeintahoe, you really have to be looking for something to find the sorta of a trail down to Azure. It may have grown over with brush or trees but it used to be open enough to make it out of Azure, but then it has been 30 years almost since I have come out of Azure that way. It is possible to go out the northwest corner too. That has been quite awhile also.
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Postby SSSdave » Thu Oct 12, 2006 7:12 pm

Enjoyed the image trip, thanks for sharing. I've had Azure Lake on my list of places to go for many years. Want to climb up the steep bluffs west of the lake in order to consider taking an aftrenoon image towards Tahoe. Nice to get a view of what they will look like. However I just don't get up to the Tahoe areas that much. Noticed on one of your pics what looked like some nice red creek dogwood on the stream dropping down from Azure Lake as viewed from Snow Lake. Always like to investigate such places for fall photograhy. I tried to find time to get up to nearby little Cathedral Lake too this fall but just did not have the time. It's shore has some of that mountain ash too. ...David
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Postby madeintahoe » Sat Oct 14, 2006 6:16 pm

Thank you David! Those cliffs on the side you want to get up to..are really beautiful looking up at them from Azure,, That would make a wonderful picture as you would pretty much be looking right down into Tahoe and Cascade Lake. I have never climbed up there but would like to one day get to both Kalmia and Snow Lakes. Tahoe has really beautiful fall colors..the Bilberry is really beautiful right now, Mountain Ash is pretty much past it's peak, but still pretty. I have not been to Cathedral Lake for years..it's a pretty little lake. I would love to see the pictures you take of this area if you get a chance to go..I can just imagine how beautiful they will be :D

Hikerduane, the way you went is probably all overgrown now I would think..I sure hope it is..that time we did the bushwhack before dropping down we did not notice any trail anywhere. Another time I was at Azure...we did hike out on the South west side of the lake where the slabs are...and that dropped us out on the trail going to Dicks Lake, but past the trail going to the velmas. That way was good and mostly all open slab hiking
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Postby giantbrookie » Mon Oct 16, 2006 7:52 pm

madeintahoe wrote:Giantbrookie...when we were at Snow Lake we were looking up at where Tallac Lake sits..I one day would like to get to that lake. Going to Snow 1st and then Azure I like better than the other way...you are right it is more off trail & was a very fun hike. How did you get to Tallac Lake?


Regarding Tallac L., I don't remember too much except that my wife and I scrambled up a line of least resistance fairly close to the outlet of Tallac. I don't recall it was overly difficult. The route must of been class 2 or easier, otherwise I would have remembered it. My overall memory of Tallac is a bit cloudy owing to the fact that Tallac has really tiny fish. They appeared to top out at 5" or thereabouts, so we didn't fish. In contrast to the hike to Tallac, one scramble we did remember was our failed attempt to circle Azure. That is the most difficult fish-bearing backcountry lake to circle that I've ever encountered (this is out of 600+ eligible lakes; second place goes to Big Blue Lake in the Klamaths where one of the crux moves circling the lake is very high class 3 and slimy). It's shoreline is an absolutely wicked combination of class 3 and worse slabs and cliffs mixed with some very dense brush. We gave up shortly after my wife fell descending a slab and scraped the skin off of nearly all of her stomach. Of course the only reason we like circumnavigating lakes is to fish them better; we certainly don't do it for kicks. Azure is a spectacular place, though ,as result of those slabby shoreline cliffs and very deep blue water. We had camped there, but we found Snow a much more hospitable place even if it wasn't as ruggedly scenic.
Since my fishing (etc.) website is still down, you can be distracted by geology stuff at: http://www.fresnostate.edu/csm/ees/facu ... ayshi.html
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