We have learned that whether in life or leisure, if something is truly an adventure, there are lessons to be learned. Openness to learning new things is an essential quality for trying new things. There were things we knew going into this trip that helped us plan - things like, our kids can day-hike 13 miles with 2,500 feet of elevation gain (yes, even our 4-year old Joel). But we didn’t know what it would mean for them to carry packs and hike day after day for four days in a row. We knew that they felt very comfortable in mountain environments, but we didn’t know whether they would feel as comfortable in those environments after many consecutive days. We knew how much food they would typically eat on a day-hike, but would they complain about that food after multiple days? These were just some of the unanswered questions we carried into the Wind River. Here are the things we learned from our first backpacking trip into the Green River which helped us adjust for our second backpacking trip in the southern end of the Wind River.
- 6-8 miles per day is more comfortable mileage when our kids are carrying packs.
- We don’t need as much food as we originally planned. Also, ditch the power bars and give them snickers bars (it’s basically the same thing, right?)
- Setting up & tearing down camp every day is a special category of hell when you have 2 kids under 6.
We adjusted our second 4-day trip which would consist of 27 miles and nearly 5,000ft of elevation gain. We visited Cirque of the Towers and the spectacular high alpine lakes like Big Sandy Lake, Clear Lake, Deep Lake, and Temple Lake. This time we backpacked in and set-up basecamp at Big Sandy Lake and from there did day-hikes each day. This was a much more relaxed itinerary which afforded lots of time to jump in lakes, hang-out, and play games like Uno and Apples to Apples. We all LOVED IT.
This is one of the most amazing trips we have ever done! The Cirque of the Towers was stunning, but it really was the high Alpine Lakes which captured our hearts. The combination of massive granite cirques rising out of beautiful crystal blue lakes was something truly to behold. We found ourselves in a place of deep worship and thankfulness for a God who created a beautiful world specifically to point our attention to His character.
On route to Big Sandy Lake
On route to Cirque of the Towers
On route to Center Lake, Deep Lake, Temple Lake
While at 10,800ft, a thunderstorm rolled in and we had to descend QUICKLY off the high mountain pass! We literally ran down the mountain!
These are good days