Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Announcing the Arrival of Alex

Our second, Alex Michael Pyne, was born today at 8:01AM. He weighs 7 lb 15 oz (same as Daniel did - what are the odds). He's doing well, and so is Kristin. His nose was a little squished, as you can see in the picture, but it is recovering nicely.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Uintas Backpacking with Dad

Dad and I (and Roxy) went backpacking for four nights around Labor Day weekend. I usually go alone (with Roxy), but Dad miraculously had a break between apple harvests so decided to come along. We left on Friday after work, later than planned, of course. We (mostly me) had to finish packing before we could go, so it was 6PM by the time we left the house. We stopped for a cheeseburger at Kimball Junction and got to the Crystal Lake Trailhead as soon as we could. It was about 8:30PM, and we hiked by headlamp to Wall Lake (about a mile) and set up camp. There were other campers on the south end of the lake, and Roxy barked quite a bit that night. She didn't really sleep all night long.

Dad near the unnamed lake where we took a wrong turn.

The next day, we had planned to hike about another 5 miles off the trail past several lakes and over the Notch, eventually going to Meadow Lake and around the mountain, past several other lakes, and off trail again to get back to the car. But we got a little disoriented by leaving the trail too early. We eventually got back on track, but it looked like it was going to rain and we weren't really feeling up for it, so we decided to change our route to a different (and shorter) loop and staying in one place for two nights.

Our camp near the western Divide Lake.

We camped at the western-most Divide Lake, which had nobody else around. Booker and Clyde Lakes were a lot more crowded, and I didn't want Roxy harassing other campers and barking all night. It turned out that was a good idea, because it was pretty windy and rained pretty hard for a couple hours in the evening. We napped in the tents, but eventually it quit and we cooked dinner and had a campfire for a pretty good evening. Roxy stayed in the tent most of the night. I guess the hiking and staying up for about 24 hours was finally starting to catch up with her.

The next morning, we put a few things in a stuff sack and took our fishing poles on a day hike to Hidden Lake, about a half mile away. We fished for a while, and cooked a nice Brook trout caveman style on a stick over a fire on shore and ate it with our fingers. We went back to camp and tried fishing a little in the nearby lake. We didn't have any luck there, so we tried the other lakes (east Divide and Booker) where we had quite a bit of luck, but the fish were pretty small (5-8 inches) so we threw them back. We made dinner and hung out at the campfire. The night was pretty uneventful, and Roxy managed to stay in the tent all night again.

The next day, we broke camp and hiked to Clyde Lake to eat lunch and do some fishing. We had pretty good luck here, eventually keeping three 10-14 inch Brook trout. We cleaned them and put them in a plastic bag to take to our next camp for dinner.

Dad and I show off our catch.
Dad is at Clyde Lake (the Notch is in the background) and Mike at Hidden Lake.

We set up camp on the southwest side of Watson Lake. The site hadn't been used much, so there was a lot of firewood. We cooked the fish in foil with some clarified butter and garlic/herb seasoning I had brought along - it was delicious. We sat around the campfire again and then went to bed. It rained briefly in the middle of the night, but was otherwise uneventful.

The next day, we fished at Watson Lake for quite a while. We had several bites, but only caught a couple of small fish that we threw back. We packed up and hiked about a mile back to the car. We stopped to bookend the trip with another cheeseburger and a malt in Kamas, then drove the rest of the way home.

Overall, we backpacked about five and half miles, plus the day hike to Hidden Lake of about a mile round trip. Not exactly the 15 miles we originally planned, but we had a good time. Here is the approximate route we took. We took the route in red (counterclockwise). The blue route was our day hike to Hidden Lake. Our campsites are noted.

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Friday, July 31, 2009

Welcome to the 21st Century

We finally set up a blog. We've been meaning to do it for a long time, so we can be cool like all the young and hip people.