Monday, July 16, 2012

Uinta Backpack Recap

I am just about out of images of recap bike ride images which kind of stinks so I guess whatever trips of all sorts I have lying around I will share and bore you with. This one was a man trip me and my good friend Brent planned before his twin baby’s were expected to arrive. I had wanted to be the tallest man in Utah for some time and that meant heading into the Uintas and getting to that 13,528 foot pile of rocks. We arrived after a comfy 90 minute ride from Salt Lake and got foot on trail in the morning hours and began walking into the unknown. I know this is a popular trail and really did not know how many people we would come across. I really had no idea what to expect but was only looking forward to relaxing and taking in the scenery. The trail was wide and mellow with a consistent uphill as you might expect. My pack was super heavy with a crappy Coleman tent that made my shoulders pretty worked; still I was one happy guy as we trekked up the trail. We passed a scout troop which was one of many I expected to see on the trip but I was surprised as we moved along how no one was out here and that was awesome! After some miles the valley opened up and distant views of the Uintas began to show its full glory. Now we were on target for the popular dollar lake and luckily we missed it. As I realized we were long past the lake we adventured off trail down into the valley and followed a barren stream and then found a trail that took us east to Henry’s Fork Lake. When it appeared through the trees it was a very welcomed sight, it was not the plan but no one was there and we had it all to ourselves which was very serene and peaceful. We set up camp and I immediately threw a line in the water and tried for the next hour to catch a fish with a fly. Things were great; I had a completely free mind and had nothing to worry about as I watched the tiny trout not taking my fly. I really didn’t care that they weren’t biting since I was in the majesty of the mountains. We did some minor exploring in the small ponds below us and then got the burner going and had some really great tasting mountain house pasta. As we got back to camp, the sun began to light the mountains orange and Mother Nature put on one heck of a show on the lake. It was the most incredible view I may have ever taken in and has been unforgettable ever since. The next day we set our goal on the summit and after a 2+ hour push up the pass and over rock fields and then one last hands and feet push to the top we had made it! The view was stunning, the smooth glacial worn valleys were humungous and screamed in beauty. All the distant lakes sparkled and I was surprised at the low number of trees. We had done it; I and Brent were the tallest fellas in Utah for those few minutes. The trek down was even faster and even that was extremely enjoyable. Hit camp and relaxed a little before we had a warm dinner. Found a horse shoe on the way in and held onto it as a souvenir and as I wandered around camp noticed two barren spots near camp and somehow came up with the idea to put sticks in the ground and play some horse shoes. What fun I had, throwing the horse shoe back and forth hooting and hollering. Another stunning day walking around this amazing place that we call Earth. The next day we hiked out and by the time we hit the car it was sad but nice to be heading home after a great 3 days in the Uinta Wilderness.

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