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Never Understood Backpacking

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Never Understood Backpacking

Postby DLeikam » Tue May 28, 2013 8:58 pm

I've always targeted "drive in remote" areas for fishing, camping, and outdoors adventuring, and there are plenty of locations that fit that oxymoron. And I've always loved the east side. Two years ago a friend of mine and I found ourselves on the east side at 395/108 staring at a map on a frigid morning wondering if we should hike into a little lake we've never been to or even considered, called Emma Lake. We decided to go for the adventure, hiked the easy mile in, fished all day, and hiked out. That day changed something in me. I've never been to a place like Emma and it sparked a fire inside that has been calling me out to more distant locations. I've never understood bakcpacking....until I went to Emma, then Ski, and the whole time I was at Ski I was wondering what is beyond that ridge above me....and those probably don't even count as "real backpacking", but that's the most I have done.

So here I am planning my first hike in overnight trip in mid-late June. I'm so excited I can hardly stand it, a little scared to be on my own under the great expanse of night sky....but that brings me back to the excitement. I can hardly wait. I got my water filter, which I think was my major missing piece of equipment. For my first time hiking and camping, I want to keep it familiar and want to do some fishing. I'm planning on driving to Leavitt and fishing Ski in the morning then off to my next destination. To keep it easy I was thinking of just heading to Latopie and setting up camp and fishing but searching here shows some folks think Latopie is barren...but another internet source says it is not. Any verified info on this? The adventure in me is urging me beyond Latopie and between Deadman and Latopie are two interesting looking unnamed lakes, but not even sure they are accessible from up there. Any idea if this would be worth exploring on a first outing? Also a little nervous about snow this early but I've heard other passes are open and snowless....

Any input would be greatly appreciated, I'll be pulling in at Leavitt late late Thursday, fish Ski Friday morning then have to leave by Saturday 1pm or so. Not sure what to do between Friday 10am and Saturday 10am. That's the time frame I'm trying to cram as much productive adventure into and beyond Ski Friday morning I'm flexible.

Thanks!

DLeikam



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Re: Never Understood Backpacking

Postby Electra » Wed May 29, 2013 7:04 am

I can't comment on the particular areas or the fish questions you have but I wish you a fantastic experience! Let us know how it goes and enjoy each and every step.....
Dan Braun
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Re: Never Understood Backpacking

Postby AlmostThere » Wed May 29, 2013 7:24 am

Sounds like you have been bit, and good. Good for you - you'll have a great time out there.

A suggestion to keep you going for many miles and many trips - do a little light reading on wilderness safety.

http://www.monosar.org/outdoor_safety.html

If you do nothing else - write down your itinerary, including a description of your vehicle and where you're parking it, who you are with, plus a description of you and the stuff you're taking, right down to the model of boot and shoe size. Tell someone reliable when you'll be back home, and when to activate searchers by calling the national park/county sheriff dept where you're going. Give them the stuff you wrote down, so they can give that to the authorities; don't expect them to remember accurately, because they won't. Make sure you have good maps and know how to read them.

Stay safe and have a great time.
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Re: Never Understood Backpacking

Postby jessegooddog » Wed May 29, 2013 7:54 am

I never understood rock climbing until I wandered into a climbing gym and found myself signing up for a lesson. I thought skiing was fun, but climbing would be the ultimate experience for me if I were younger with more upper body strength. It just takes one positive OR negative experience....I backpacked in my 20s with my ex husband - no acclimation time, heavy packs, hard uncomfortable boots, lousy sleeping pad with leg cramps and altitude sickness all night, mosquitos; I really hated it. Now I am in my 60s and with good equipment am looking forward to as many overnight trips as I can get in. I won't do any more miles than a dayhike, but the solitude is what draws me - sleeping alone in the true wilderness. Hope you have a great trip and come back for many more.
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Re: Never Understood Backpacking

Postby maverick » Wed May 29, 2013 10:13 am

Hi D,

Welcome to HST! Great to read your excitement about your upcoming first overnight
experience.
Here are some TR's in regards to fishing to that area hope they help:
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=3213&p=19050&hilit=Latopie+Lake#p19050
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=7129&p=50252&hilit=Latopie+Lake#p50252
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=5739&p=37608&hilit=Latopie+Lake#p37608

Also this older thread might be an interesting read for you:
viewtopic.php?f=9&t=5921&hilit=first+backpacking
Last edited by maverick on Wed May 29, 2013 10:21 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Added text
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: Never Understood Backpacking

Postby SSSdave » Wed May 29, 2013 1:13 pm

Since you're nibbling the bait like a hungry stunted brookie, I'm going to hook you rather securely with a sharpened well barbed hook. Someplace right in that region but just a wee south.

Get a permit at Bridgeport for the Green Creek trailhead and carry your gear up the modest 3.5 miles 1400 feet to East Lake. Make your campsite about mid lake along the shore trail.

And don't forget the frying pan.
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Re: Never Understood Backpacking

Postby DLeikam » Wed May 29, 2013 4:26 pm

Thanks for the info and warm welcome! I always leave a detailed itinerary for my wife and a "drop dead" time/date with contact info - who to call and exactly when, so glad to know I'm on the right path. I haven't detailed gear, that's a great idea.

I will post a trip report when I get back, pretty excited for it!

Thanks!
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Re: Never Understood Backpacking

Postby DLeikam » Wed May 29, 2013 4:29 pm

SSSdave wrote:Since you're nibbling the bait like a hungry stunted brookie, I'm going to hook you rather securely with a sharpened well barbed hook. Someplace right in that region but just a wee south.

Get a permit at Bridgeport for the Green Creek trailhead and carry your gear up the modest 3.5 miles 1400 feet to East Lake. Make your campsite about mid lake along the shore trail.

And don't forget the frying pan.

Haahaaa, I'm going to have to use that line, "nibbling like a hungry stunted brookie...". Great line. Late last season I took my daughters to Green Creek and we headed up the trail to Green Lake - got within probably 1/4 mile and they sat down in protest, wanted to go back. This is a great suggestion, not sure if I can fit this into the mid-Friday to mid-Saturday timeframe.....now you have me rethinking the itinerary...stay tuned.
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Re: Never Understood Backpacking

Postby giantbrookie » Wed May 29, 2013 4:33 pm

Some of the area you are thinking about (ie to Deadman etc.) is truly fun and exploratory country, but I believe those lakes are fishless.

Given that fishing appears to be a major objective, you will probably want to pick a different target for your trip and the target you pick depends on the nature of fishing and how remote a place you'd like to go. For quality fishing for large fish I believe Desolation Wilderness is a superb destination because you can have lakes such as Susie that are reliable brookie producers nearby in case "premium" lunker destinations are slow and uncooperative (and there are some mammoth fish in many Desolation lakes---see numerous thread in the Fishing section of this forum). Advantages of Desolation are that hikes are short and many lakes with a variety of fishing experiences are within easy dayhiking distance of anywhere you choose to set up your camp. The disadvantage is that because of the ease of access, Desolation's best lakes will see many more people than Emma and Ski.

Dave's suggestion of the Green Creek trailhead and East Lake is a good one. That is a gorgeous and very reliable lake for brookies and rainbows that can run fairly large. Nearby Green and especially West Lake are high quality lakes too, although Green will go through times when it seems as if only very small fish will hit.

Best wishes.

GB
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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Re: Never Understood Backpacking

Postby DLeikam » Wed May 29, 2013 8:04 pm

maverick wrote:Hi D,

Welcome to HST! Great to read your excitement about your upcoming first overnight
experience.
Here are some TR's in regards to fishing to that area hope they help:
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=3213&p=19050&hilit=Latopie+Lake#p19050
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=7129&p=50252&hilit=Latopie+Lake#p50252
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=5739&p=37608&hilit=Latopie+Lake#p37608

Also this older thread might be an interesting read for you:
viewtopic.php?f=9&t=5921&hilit=first+backpacking


Love that last thread, thanks for sharing. I hope someday my children will look back with fond memories on the adventures we go on. I have a great photo of my daughter at 6 and her first completely "on her own" trout on a fly rod. It was a fish I'd have been proud of, she was beaming.
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