Sunday, July 13, 2014

Boulder Lake: I Keep Myself So Lifted I Am Accustomed To New Heights

Head of Boulder Creek
So this weekend I had planned on doing an overnighter up into Wildhorse to hit a few lakes. Some of those lakes I have been to and a few of them I have not. I have been to a few for work but ones that I get paid for I don't count for my overall total number of lakes I have been to in the Lost River Ranger District. So far I have been to about 41 lakes and I have three lakes left to go to; Boulder and Washington being two of those three. The idea on Friday was to hike to Boulder Lake and fish for a bit and then proceed to go find Washington Lake.
Devils Bedstead Right

Boulder Lake

When I woke up Friday I was think about the day ahead of me and all of a sudden I remembered that there is a big stream crossing and it was going to be cold. So after thinking about that stream crossing my morning slowed down a bit knowing that I would have to cross one of the coldest streams on the district early in the morning. Ever since I got diabetes, stream crossings have gotten harder for me. I always have to be careful not to cut my feet up on the stream bed and about halfway through the stream all the blood rushes to my core making me feel shaky like I have low blood sugar. But after debating whether or not to leave my shoes on and cross or take them off I final took my shoes off and fought through the pain but I'm glad I took my shoes off because I hate walking in wet shoes all day.

Wolverine Print

Wolverine Tracks

The rest of the morning went pretty good. My legs felt solid even after a long week of busting out miles of trail work and going 10 miles the day before packing a chainsaw. I cruised up to the lake a lot faster then I had expected. When I got up to the lake it was just getting hit by the sun, perfect time for the fish to start feeding but that wasn't the case. They where feeding but they where also getting ready to spawn so they didn't want anything to do with me and after an hour of a few bites here and there I just continued to let them do there thing and moved on to find Washington Lake.

Boulder Creek

Little Boulder Lake, Unofficial Name

Devils Bedstead 11865 ft

Long-toed Salamander

Long-toed Salamander

From Boulder Lake the plan was to wrap around the mountain and just sidehill all the way to Washington Lake but that was easier said then done. I'm always worried about getting cliffed out on this rocky terrain because once you get cliffed out you lose all that hard work that you did keeping that elevation and even gaining some in the mean time. Well sure enough I did get cliffed out and finally had to make the smart decision and just drop down and go around the cliffs. This took longer then I thought and wiped me out. Once I got above the first ledge where the waterfalls were, I was tired enough to the point that I would probably hurt my chances off getting to Airplane and Arrowhead the following day. So I made the smart decision that costed me the opportunity of knocking Washington Lake off my list.
I only hiked a bit longer until I looked around and saw a bench where a lake could sit but my maps didn't show the lake sitting under the Devils Bedstead so I figured it wasn't going to be up there. I looked behind me and spotted a lake that I felt confident it was it, mainly because I didn't want to hike up to that bench, so I decided that was the lake. When I arrived to the lake there was no fish to been seen but I did see a ton of salamanders that took me by surprise. I didn't think that they could live that high up in a mountain lake but there was a ton of them so they must be doing well. On the way out I began having problems with a tight IT band. It has been acting up every once in awhile but I have been able to push through it. As I continued to walk out it just wouldn't go away and kept getting worse, so by the time I reached the trail head I decided to opt out of the Airplane and Arrowhead trip to try and focus on this problem so I could run in my upcoming races in a few weeks. When I got back to my car I pulled out my Backpacker TOPO and saw that I was about 100 yards from Washington Lake. With that being said I still want to go back up to Washington Lake and would still love to do Airplane and Arrowhead in a day. With those trips, I have a good excuse to go back to Wildhorse.
Devils Bedstead

Wildhorse Canyon

Lakes of the Lost River Ranger District

Swauger Lake                     Long Lake                       Clear Lake                            Wildhorse Lake #5
Pass Lake                            Rough Lake                     Bellas Lake                          Wildhorse Lake #6
Merriam Lake                      Big Lake                          Bellas Lake #2                     Wildhorse Lake #7
Carlson Lake                       Golden Lake                    Fall Creek Lake                   Wildhorse Lake #8
Corral Lake                          Green Lake                      Fall Creek Lake #2              Boulder Lake
Fishpole Lake                      Starhope Lake                 Angel Lake                           Kane Lake
Iron Bog Lake                      Baptie Lake                     Moose Lake                         Grant Creek Lake
Bobber Lake                        Goat Lake                       Moose Lake #2                     Lehman Lake
Brockie Lake                       Betty Lake                       Arrowhead Lake
Round Lake                         Bench Lake                      Airplane Lake

Gone to But Doesnt Have Fish
Surprise Valley Lake #1
Surprise Valley Lake #2
Bellas Lake #3

Still Left To Do
Washington Lake
Big Fall Creek Lake

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