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Little Lakes Basin Hike 4-27

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Little Lakes Basin Hike 4-27

Postby papasequoia » Wed Apr 29, 2015 11:04 pm

Did not get to do the 'shaking off the cobwebs' backpack trip to this area as was originally planned. However, we did get to do a day hike in the area on Monday April 27th. Here is a brief report with some pics of conditions found earlier this week.

The creek as seen at Mosquito Flats looks terrible for this time of year. I shudder to think of what it will be like in July or August.

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The trail is easily passable, many dry stretches with some mud, water and snow in patches, increasing in frequency as you go higher.

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Most of the lakes are frozen except at the inlets and outlets. Here are pics of March, Mack, Heart and two of Box:

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Obviously fishing would be tough which had been the original plan. We continued on to Long and found some open water at the outlet and inlet like the others, but the inlet was marshy and a restoration area and the outlet was shallow with no fish visible, so we just enjoyed the view and walked on by.

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There was more snow covering the trail to Chickenfoot, so we wandered cross country to look for a nice place to sit for lunch. Found it!

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The inlet creek to CF was open and flowing and had plenty of small fish swimming in it. However, due to size and not knowing if they were spawning I left them alone. The lake is still frozen.

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By the end of the day the trail was getting mushy and the new boots got a good test. I have Salomon boots for downhill and xc skiing, but I have never tried their hiking boots, nor have I ever worn a 100% synthetic boot. These were comfy and dry right out of the box. I'm sure they won't last as long as a synthetic/leather or all leather mix, but they felt great.

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I was disappointed on the hike out that I hadn't had a chance to fish - but at the outlet from Long I saw a couple of fish drifting back and forth from under the ice. I promised the wife I would just take 10 minutes (she had a bit of a headache) and cast in a size 22 brownish RS2 for my one and only fish of the day and kept my promise to the wife.

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So, one way to look at it was a 6 mile hike for a 6 inch fish. But the way I prefer to look at it was a beautiful early season hike with my wife and son in the Sierra.

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Jon
Nature always wins
> miles = < people



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Re: Little Lakes Basin Hike 4-27

Postby maverick » Thu Apr 30, 2015 11:55 am

Thank you Jon for posting this TR and pictures, which will be helpful to fellow HST members. :thumbsup:
HST= Wilderness Adventurer who knows no bounds, except for their own imagination.

Have a safer backcountry experience by using the HST ReConn Form 2.0, named after Larry Conn, a HST member: http://reconn.org
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Re: Little Lakes Basin Hike 4-27

Postby gary c. » Thu Apr 30, 2015 12:23 pm

Sounds like a great day with the family. A s always your pictures are great. That shot of the water flow in the creek is just scary though.
"On this proud and beautiful mountain we have lived hours of fraternal, warm and exalting nobility. Here for a few days we have ceased to be slaves and have really been men. It is hard to return to servitude."
-- Lionel Terray
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Re: Little Lakes Basin Hike 4-27

Postby Hobbes » Thu Apr 30, 2015 1:17 pm

gary c. wrote:That shot of the water flow in the creek is just scary though.


I had the same exact thought. Lakes icing out in April, creeks almost dry, human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together...

Come August/September, watch out. Over the years, I've been caught (downwind) three different times in major forest fires: twice in Tahoe, and once in the Canadian Rockies. Visibility @ 50-100 yards, high winds, scorching temperatures, sun barely visible, the whole 9 yards. (Add to that countless Santa Ana fires in the fall, and I've developed quite an aversion to apocalyptic conditions.)

I guess that's part of the reason everyone is chomping at the bit to get out now. It's gonna be a small, short window while everything is still white, blue, green & fresh.
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Re: Little Lakes Basin Hike 4-27

Postby John Harper » Thu Apr 30, 2015 7:51 pm

Pretty amazing pictures of this lack of snow year!

That is such low water for late April. We need a break in the drought next year for sure.

Hope to see you at the GTW, I'm headed that way again.

John
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Re: Little Lakes Basin Hike 4-27

Postby gary c. » Thu Apr 30, 2015 8:34 pm

John Harper, I'm going to try and make again this year also.
"On this proud and beautiful mountain we have lived hours of fraternal, warm and exalting nobility. Here for a few days we have ceased to be slaves and have really been men. It is hard to return to servitude."
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