Events/Trails Coyote Flats / Eastern Sierras August 8th - 12th (1 Viewer)

elripster

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Later in the day after Tim and and Zach had arrived I drove back down the mountain to meet up with my wife and one year old. Normally I wouldn't drive the 'burban up here but there year there just wasn't any other way to really make it all work. They were to stay at grampa's house in Solvang after the trip through this week and there was just too much stuff for the 80. Add that to the fact she had to drive separately it was making the trip.

A quick digression of my observations wheeling a Z71 'burban with no mods other than a better set of tires.
- it is probably one of the most entertaining vehicles to watch navigate undulated surfaces as it hauls it front wheels way into the air.
- The Eaton locker actually works... well... and got quite a workout.
- Some how my wife did a fabulous job of avoiding brush on the way up but did take out a running board... now I can get a truck part that actually belongs on there.
- On the way down she seemed to mow through every bush... I have many hours of paint buffing ahead of me.
- I am not sure I want to take it up there again if only because it murders the paint.



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elripster

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Once back at camp we all got comfortable and started grilling.

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The next morning breakfast greatness was had.

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elripster

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Saturday morning the kids were up early as always and started playing.

This was a unique year. Our kiddos are getting older and a bit more independent. There was awesome fort building...
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And rebuilding...


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Another first was "Kid's Camp". The kids built a fire ring and made their own camp area a short distance from the main area.

Otherwise, they had a meadow to playing and lots of places to explore...


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elripster

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The dogs had a blast, no-leashes-required time up there...

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When we finally got done with breakfast we packed up and headed to Baker campground to hike into Hidden Lake. The camp ground is about 8 miles away but takes about an hour to get there. I was too busy driving to get pictures but one of my kids got a hold of my phone and took a bunch of random ones...

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Thereafter I hiked wit my one year old on my back carrying fishing gear. Once there I tended to fishing poles and so didn't get any pictures. I will have to see if anyone else did. However, the day ended with....


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Tim and Zach crushing it at dinner.

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elripster

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With everyone departing Sunday we decided to also depart the plateau but since I had Monday off I searched for a way to extend our vacation in the area. We found a pet friendly place called Glacier Lodge. It is west of Big Pine and you get there from the road form that Sugarloaf heads off of which is the hard way up to the flats. While this road is paved, it is so steep in spots the 80 was pulling in 1st gear at 25 MPH... and that after we used up lots of heaviness like water in the trailer's water tank. But, it got us back to like 9000' in no time.

Glacier Lodge was an interesting experience. It was spendy, like $240 for a cabin once taxes were factored in. The warm shower was epic as was sleeping on a bed indoors. However, the cabin's heat didn't work, there was a shortage of toilette paper and towels, the one room's light bulb was out. I spoke to the owners and they had just bought the place. They are rehabbing it and rebuilding the actual lodge that was built in 1917 but had fallen into disrepair. They apologized profusely and offered us a discount on our next stay. However, on the plus side, both of my boys caught their first fishes in their kid's fishing pond. Daniel learned out to cast very well which will be helpful fishing for wild fish vs. farm fish which love bait. That alone made the stop worth it...

I am holding Garrett's fish because he is eating and couldn't quite keep a hold of it.

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Claire and Brennan were observing...

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This stream was running by the cabin and so you got to listen to it all night which was very relaxing.

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elripster

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Daniel did not catch a fish Sunday and was very discouraged. I was determined to do my best to help him catch a fish. Monday morning the fish would bite on anything. They'd nose up the bait and then turn away. Daniel got creative and when the fish did that and swished his tail at the bait Daniel yanked the rod and snagged the fish in butt... like no kidding, in the butt.

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Anyway, Daniel was ecstatic and I felt like I didn't let him down.

After that we loaded up and headed out. As I mentioned Claire took the boys to Solvang to see Grampa for the week. It was hard saying goodbye too all of them for the week though. I missed them as soon as we pulled out of the parking lot. They will be back Sunday which is good because house is too quiet.

In parting, if any of you make it up here this year or next, try to get some time off and really soak in the area. Take 2-3 days up there, it's worth it. There are so many roads we have never explored, lakes we haven't fished, and good times we have yet to have. The Coyote Plateau is a special place. It's a free place and not just in cost but in what you can do there and were you can camp. It is uncrowded. It is likely the least buggy place of its kind that still offers the alpine experience. It's far but not too far, reachable in a day. And ultimately, it is just one beautiful piece of earth to spend some time.


- Frank
 

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