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October East Side Canyon Trip Report

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October East Side Canyon Trip Report

Postby richlong8 » Wed Oct 31, 2012 9:32 pm

Good suggestion by rlown, to generate some trip reports. I am behind, but I think I will post my most recent trip from the weekend of Oct. 20-21st. I knew the weather was going to be cool, and my back was sore, so I decided take it easy, and just dayhike to the higher elevations, and sleep down lower where it was warmer. I even got a cheap motel room in Bishop Sat. night, but I should have just slept on the side of the road. Man, that room stunk!
I made the drive up from Bakersfield to McGee Canyon north of Bishop on Sat. morning, and was on trail probably about 8am. One of my primary purposes was to try and take some photos of some aspens in fall color on this trip. Unfortunately, for the most part on Saturday, I was too early for good light, and too late coming down for good photos of the aspen trees. However, the 6 mile jaunt to Steelhead Lake from the McGee Creek traillhead was very pleasant, and even though it was not very warm, it seemed just right, with a mild breeze. I fished for maybe a couple of hours off and on at the lake. A trail guide I read said the lake was named Steelhead, because the rainbows in the lake had a light color to them, not that there were steelhead trout here. However, like many lakes these days, it seems as if fishing info is becoming quickly outdated. I found nothing but brookies here, catching a number of fish in the 8-10" size range.
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I left Steelhead Lake around 3, but only arrived back at the car at dusk, because I just had to stop and fish McGee Creek on the way down. There is an area about 3 miles from the trailhead that is dammed up by beavers. It has a little sentimental value for me, because 30 years ago, a friend and I backpacked here, and he tried to teach to fish with Mepps spinners in this creek. It was quite a thrill back then to catch a golden trout from this creek. The beaver activity and dam is so big now that it is like a small, shallow lake compared to 30 years ago. There were fish rising everywhere when I reached the creek area about 5pm, so I just had to toss a few lures for old times sake. No more golden trout that I can tell are in McGee creek, but they might be fat little hybrids.
The next morning, after a night in civilization, in Bishop, I arrived at Little Lakes Valley trailhead about 7am. It was very cold, and you could tell from the cloud formations that a front was on the way. I usually avoid Rock Creek, and Little Lakes Valley, for they are so crowded, but when I got there, there were only a few cars and 2 people around. My plan for the day was to go up to Chickenfoot Lake, spend a little time, then be back at McGee Creek by midday so I could go up trail and get some better aspen photos. I had the high country to myself on the Little Lakes trail until I started downhill, and then, it seemed as if it was the Mt. Whitney trail! Very popular place on a Sunday morning. I will post a few more photos, and then post a link to my Picasa page. Too many aspen pics to post in a TR. I thing I always appreciated about Maverick was he was very quick to engage posters about their trip reports, and several times passed on very helpful info and tips on how I might take better photos, even taking the time to PM. I hope he changes his mind about involvement. His departure leaves a hole at HST.
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On they way down Rock Creek, I saw this closed campground access road, and wondered if there might be a photo op.
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Very nice little trip, probably my last trip of 2012. Here's a link to more photos, BISHOP2012 FOLDER, the aspen photos can get a little redundant. Image



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Re: October East Side Canyon Trip Report

Postby rlown » Wed Oct 31, 2012 9:58 pm

A very nice TR. I liked pics 3 and 4 the most.. The brookie was showing almost as much color as your surroundings.
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Re: October East Side Canyon Trip Report

Postby Herm » Wed Oct 31, 2012 10:11 pm

Thanks richlong8 for the nice TR. Especially nice were the first aspen photo followed by the equally beautiful brookie. And I like the twisted geology through the trees shot.
I am not in a hurry, so don't be hasty.
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Re: October East Side Canyon Trip Report

Postby gary c. » Wed Oct 31, 2012 11:13 pm

Beautiful pictures and a nice report, thanks for sharing.
"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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Re: October East Side Canyon Trip Report

Postby richlong8 » Thu Nov 01, 2012 5:59 am

Thanks all for your positive comments.
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Re: October East Side Canyon Trip Report

Postby EastSideClimb » Thu Nov 01, 2012 8:23 am

Wow..beautiful fall colors. I was up the last weekend in Sept and saw some tri color Rasta Aspen groves...Green Yellow and Red. Looks like an absolutely divine time of year. Nice work.
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Re: October East Side Canyon Trip Report

Postby richlong8 » Thu Nov 01, 2012 8:34 am

I would have liked to see more red and orange aspens, but that's just greed on my part!
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October East Side Canyon Trip Report

Postby Bluewater » Thu Nov 01, 2012 8:39 am

Beautiful late season photos, my favorite time of year. Thanx for posting
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Re: October East Side Canyon Trip Report

Postby balzaccom » Thu Nov 01, 2012 9:02 am

Beautiful photos! Thanks.
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Re: October East Side Canyon Trip Report

Postby LMBSGV » Thu Nov 01, 2012 10:06 am

Thanks for posting. I love the aspen photos.
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Re: October East Side Canyon Trip Report

Postby Jason » Thu Nov 01, 2012 10:35 am

Fantastic! I too loved the aspen and brookie photo right next to each other. I've never spent time in the Southern area of the 'East Side' during fall. Maybe next year.
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Re: October East Side Canyon Trip Report

Postby richlong8 » Thu Nov 01, 2012 11:05 am

Thanks all. It was definitely worthwhile going back over midday to McGee Creek Canyon on Sunday and hiking up a couple of miles. The lighting was much better midday and afternoon. The last photo posted was shot with telephoto from the side of the road close to Tom's Place. Very nice stand of trees there with a little ridge behind the trees.
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