Sunday, September 11, 2011

Backpacking the Uintas: Ostler Fork

Seth and I spent the last couple weekends backpacking up in our local mountains: the Uintas. It had been a couple years since we'd last gone so we were excited to get out and give it another go.

On our first trip we headed for a group of lakes near Christmas Meadows. Here's the route we took:

I'm not going to lie. That was a HARD hike. It was about 5 miles to our camping spot at Ostler Lake. Five STEEP miles. My butt almost fell off. But we made it!

It was a very secluded spot and we were the only ones camping there. It was the quietest night I can ever remember with not so much as a gust of wind.Unfortunately it was a pretty rough night as far as sleeping goes. Neither Seth nor I slept much at all and we were both pretty disappointed with our new sleeping bags.

The next day we fished Ostler Lake. I caught 3 fish: 2 good sized cutthroats and a tiger trout. Somehow Seth managed to get skunked.

After fishing there for a few hours we ate lunch and napped for a little while and thought maybe we should just go back home after the horrible night we'd had. But, after packing up our gear and heading back out onto the trail, we realized we weren't ready to leave yet and made our way up to "No Name Lake"... a little lake just southeast of Ostler. No Name Lake was incredibly beautiful and our camping spot was even better than the one we had the night before.

 I managed to catch 2 cutthroats on a beetle at No Name but somehow, Seth got skunked again. The next morning we decided to hike up to Amethyst Lake before heading home. We only got to fish for about 45 minutes before a storm rolled in, but we both caught a few brookies in that amount of time. I believe I caught 3 and Seth caught 9! We wished we had more time to spend there, but we now had about 6 miles to hike to get back and figured we'd better get a move on it.

This was a pretty aggressive trip for our first time out this year, but we had a great time. It was nice to finally get in some fly fishing after going the whole spring and summer without it. Not to mention some camping too!


Paul said...

Gorgeous! The post makes my mouth water for some backpacking right now! One of these days I will manage get in the Utah backcountry for some of that scenery. I'm glad you guys got to take a break from the house stuff for the outdoor stuff.

Paul said...

Oh, and one other thing. I tried to comment on your freeze dried meals post but either it or my computer wouldn't let me so ... my two centavos.

Mountain House makes chicken stew and turkey tetrazinni that are pretty good. The chicken and dumplings (different company but I can't remember the name) is also good but a bit of a pain to cook. The apples & dumplings are also a pain but less so. Avoid AT ALL COST (!!!) the spaghetti with meat sauce. I do not know what that stuff is. And finally, just the plain eggs with bacon bits are fine for b-fast but make sure the water is hot and let it sit longer than the instructions say or they are chalky. We always bring pancake mix for the fish, so at least one morning is pancakes. Hopefully with fish. But not always.

Rachel said...

Looks lovely.

heidi said...

God, so many beautiful pictures! My fave is the hiking boot+butterfly.

It looks like your trip made up in quality what you weren't able to get in quantity. (Sounded retarded--hopefully you know what I meant!)

Collette Smith said...

Those are some gorgeous pics. I am craving a serious hike. Or maybe five. Too bad about the sleeping bags.