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TR- Ruby Mountains

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TR- Ruby Mountains

Postby Wandering Daisy » Wed Jun 29, 2011 10:27 am

Ruby Mountains
June 26-27, 2011

Our planned 3-day backpack in the Ruby Mountains was thwarted more by illness than snow conditions. After two days in American Falls Idaho, Dave and I both suffered allergies and typical greasy road-food digestive problems, so opted for day hiking. The FS rangers also were not encouraging, saying that it was all snow and post-holing. We drove up Lamoille Canyon road just at dusk Sunday and were delighted to find a space in the beautiful Thomas Canyon Campground. Next morning we got up early and headed up the road to the 8,800 foot elevation trailhead. After only a few yards on a muddy trail the snow began, but it was firm with easy walking. At frozen Dollar Lake (9,700) Dave was feeling ill and turned back. I continued to Lamoille Lake (9,800) and on up to Liberty Pass (10,500). Only a few small benches above Lamoille Lake and the rocky top of Liberty Pass were dry with tiny dry patches not even large enough for a tent. Lamoille Lake was just beginning to melt. Descending the snow became a bit softer, but no post-holing. I think we could have easily walked in to Favre Lake destination, but would have had to camp on snow. After this 5 mile hike, we drove back to the campground for lunch. Dave went to town to get some more desirable food (we now only had backpack food remaining) and I headed up Thomas Canyon whose trailhead started from the campground (7,600). Lush greenery and a roaring creek lead upward with snow starting at about 8,600 feet. After about 3 miles I topped out into the wet upper cirque where Marsh Marigolds were in bloom. By now my feet were soaked so I just sloshed around in the swamp taking photos. I descended back to camp where Dave was waiting with roasted chicken, cantaloupe and wine. After dinner we slowly drove back up Lamoille Canyon to view the numerous waterfalls in the evening light. We even had great views from our campsite! Dave was still ill, so we cut our plans short and drove home. The Ruby Mountains were beautiful, but day hikes were more abundant than backpack opportunities. Most of the west side canyons, which would provide good backpacking early season, have no public access and the Crest trail was still under lots of snow. It was a good first try at the Ruby Mountains- we definitely will return!

Lamoille Creek
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Looking back at Lamoille Canyon
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Dollar Lake
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Liberty Lake from Liberty Pass
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Looking down Thomas Canyon
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Marsh Marigold in upper Thomas Canyon
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Looking up to hanging valley in Thomas Canyon
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Waterfalls
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Views from our campsite
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Wandering Daisy
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Re: TR- Ruby Mountains

Postby maverick » Wed Jun 29, 2011 10:49 am

Well WD, since you have not chimed in lately, was hopping you were on your trip.
Looks pretty up there, thanks for the TR.
Really enjoyed the shot of Lamoille Canyon and the Thomas Canyon ridgeline!
To bad about the upset stomach's, hope Dave is doing better.
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Re: TR- Ruby Mountains

Postby Troutdog 59 » Wed Jun 29, 2011 4:04 pm

Very nice WD!!!! I have never seen the Lamoille Crrek with so much water or the Rubys with so much snow, as both of my trips were later in the season. Absoulutely stunning!!! Thanks for the TR!!
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Re: TR- Ruby Mountains

Postby Cross Country » Wed Jun 29, 2011 5:28 pm

I enjoyed your TR and must say your a better hiker than I ever was. Lots of snow always got the better of me. I could deal with patches here and there, but for me the operative phrase was "deal with". Hiking in snow just wasn't any fun for me but I'm really glad you had a good time.
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Re: TR- Ruby Mountains

Postby mokelumnekid » Wed Jun 29, 2011 5:42 pm

Wonderful! There are a lot of fantastic and hidden places in the ranges of eastern and central Nevada. I did a fair amount of geology work out there BITD and was amazed by what I saw. Just far enough away from major urban centers that a lot of it doesn't get much use outside locals. Sssshhh- don't tell anybody. ;)
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Re: TR- Ruby Mountains

Postby giantbrookie » Sat Jul 09, 2011 1:27 pm

Wonderful report. I have daydreamed about going to the Rubys for decades yet somehow not managed to visit yet. This will intensify the daydreams.
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: TR- Ruby Mountains

Postby sparky » Thu Jul 21, 2011 9:57 pm

Thanks for the report! I had spied out the surrounding areas on my travels long ago, and my interest recently resurfaced thanks to the good ol' internet. Beautiful landscape there, and great pictures. Long drive for me though...how much traffic on the trails prime time? I am assuming its a fairly quiet place?
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