What a great trip! Afterall, how can a trip that starts and ends with Cracker Barrel be bad? The 9 of us met at Cracker Barrel in Pueblo, CO and stuffed our bellies with excess carbs and protein for the hike. Then it was off to Lily Lake
All in all, we had 4 hammock forums members make it to Lily Lake for what turned out to be a dichotomy of camping styles. Slowanderer (Ed), Blujaket (Keith), Kyle (Kyle), and myself represented for the hanging community. We also had 5 neanderthals, I mean tenters, that made the hike.
The trek started in the San Isabel National Forest at 10,700'. Lily Lake is just above tree line at 12,200'. We ended up camping about a half mile below the lake and trudging up the last bit whenever we wanted to fish. What I didn't know when we made camp was that the last half mile was the most difficult part of the entire hike.
To say that the Upper Huerfano Valley is beautiful is an extreme understatement.
And did we ever eat like Kings! We had brats and fresh cutthroat trout at night and bacon and eggs for breakfast. I know what you're thinking: "Wait a minute, someone hiked up a pound of bacon, a dozen eggs and enough brats to feed everyone?" Yes. They also had a tent on their back. Just sayin'. The fish was courtesy of Lily Lake and some of the more accomplished fishermen in our group. I'm not going to name any names.
Thanks to Kyle, we even had wild strawberries! They're small but delicious!
Kyle is happy to be getting some miles underneath his belt!
By the time the trip was done, Slowanderer had every single person ask to spend a few minutes in his Ridge Runner. The reactions were pretty standard: "Holy S&^%! That is the most comfortable thing I've ever laid in!"
Kyle's amazing weatherproof palace...and did we ever need it. We got a pretty significant amount of rain during our 3 days in the wilderness.
The trip was a great success; good people, good fishing, good food, good fun and great hanging!