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Quick Question Cottonwood Lakes TH

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Quick Question Cottonwood Lakes TH

Postby jessegooddog » Mon Aug 05, 2013 2:04 pm

I have an overnight permit for the end of this week. Will there be water along the way to the lakes for Freddog, or will I need to carry extra? I have never hiked this area and don't know what to expect of the streams in this dry year. High temps are predicted only in the 50s - can't wait to hike in this weather. And any suggestions for hidden campsites would be much appreciated, I would love to set up camp early and dayhike a fair portion if possible.

Thanks everyone!



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Re: Quick Question Cottonwood Lakes TH

Postby RichardCullip » Mon Aug 05, 2013 2:12 pm

jessegooddog wrote:I have an overnight permit for the end of this week. Will there be water along the way to the lakes for Freddog, or will I need to carry extra? I have never hiked this area and don't know what to expect of the streams in this dry year. High temps are predicted only in the 50s - can't wait to hike in this weather!


Be aware that, over the June 29th-30th weekend, there was no water in the trailhead camps. The faucets were there but no water would come out of them. This caught more than one group unawares and in desperate need of water. There was very little water in the unnamed creek that runs thru Horseshoe meadow. I hiked up to South Forks Lake and there was water available at the creek crossings and the cabin that's about halfway btwn the trailhead and South Fork Lake. Sorry I don't have any more up-to-date report but that was my one and only trip up there this summer.
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Re: Quick Question Cottonwood Lakes TH

Postby Vaca Russ » Mon Aug 05, 2013 2:23 pm

Jesse,

I don't know about water at the campground. I had plenty in my truck.

The trail? Yes, we were there July 25 and there was water running in the creek. You are going to Cottonwood Lakes? The trail crosses Cottonwood Creek in three places. There is ample water in the first two places with little fish swimming around. I do think the last crossing is dry, but from there you are not too far from the lakes.

There are good campsites all along the NE side of Lake #3. Climb up the rocks into the trees. They are there. There is also a nice spot right at the inlet. Cross through the willows. It may seem a little sketchy but it is only 20 paces and you will be in a pretty meadow. Only problem is there is no shade in this spot.

-Russ
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Re: Quick Question Cottonwood Lakes TH

Postby BrianF » Mon Aug 05, 2013 7:38 pm

I was just at the Cottonwood Pass/golden trout trailhead 8/3 and the faucets there were working. The crowds in the walk-in camps were incredible though! We went up towards Cottonwood pass and all the creek crossings were flowing fine there, then came down off of Cirque Peak via Cirque Lake and down the South Fork and the South Fork was flowing well. I don't think you'll have trouble finding water at the creek crossings on the main trail.
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Re: Quick Question Cottonwood Lakes TH

Postby SweetSierra » Tue Aug 06, 2013 4:43 am

I was at Cottonwood Lakes and Cottonwood Pass trailheads for several days over the July 4th holiday. Although a couple of the faucets appeared not to work (the ones right at both of the trailheads), they were functional. After I struggled with them, someone told me the handles needed to be pushed back and held for a few moments (as I recall).

The walk-in sites were packed. I ended up walking all over the area as I had sustained an injury to my tendon behind my knee a few weeks prior which kept me from running and backpacking. I could walk, though, and even put on the pack once for a hike part way to Cottonwood Pass to test out the tendon. So, I hit all the faucets.
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Re: Quick Question Cottonwood Lakes TH

Postby mcphersonm80 » Sun Aug 11, 2013 1:21 pm

I was up there last weekend. Several campers/hikers had problems with the faucets... they simply have to be pumped a few times and then held down. Water will come bursting out shortly.
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Re: Quick Question Cottonwood Lakes TH

Postby jessegooddog » Sun Aug 11, 2013 3:48 pm

We made it to the first creek crossing where there was plenty of water for Freddog. Shortly afterwards, we stopped for lunch and I discovered his biscuit lunch treats were not with me. I knew I had put them in the car, so after several minutes of indecision, we went back down to avoid a bear break in and all the hassles and expense it would entail. Of course, they were not in the car, I now think I dropped them on the trail earlier while searching for my camera in my waist pack. Hot, tired and really frustrated after an already very late start, we returned home. After beating myself up for a while, I decided it was just a dry run and I needed to do a much better job repacking, including getting a smaller bear canister. So, we are off again early tomorrow morning for my first ever night alone in the wilderness!
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Re: Quick Question Cottonwood Lakes TH

Postby Vaca Russ » Fri Aug 16, 2013 7:37 am

Jesse,

I see you made it in and back OK. Great! :nod:

Sport and I were up there Sunday and Monday as well. We stayed at Lake #4. Regarding the water situation...just to update everybody else. There is plenty of water in all three crossings of Cottonwood Creek.

Do you have any pictures to post? :)

Thanks,

-Russ
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