Two Kids and Two Nights at Silver Lake


Life really is better Here
Apr 20, 2013
Part 1, or is it Part 2?

Given that my last couple of overnight trips have been in a 45d bag, it is a little harder to recall needing to wear a long sleeved shirt, even in the sun, as well as fields of snow and postholing to try and get up to Silver Glance, but that is exactly what it was over Memorial Day weekend.

If you missed the sunshine and blue skies trip with a slightly different take, that came two weeks later, then you can see it here:

Over Memorial Day the forecast for night two was thunderstorms and a chance of snow.

When I left my house on Friday not just one, but two little ones followed me out the door.
They ate my candy and food, and luckily early, early the last morning, they let me into their tent...
They also retrieved my lens cap after it rolled magnificently and perfectly down a cliff, then across a patch of snow and hid itself in a bush forty or so vertical feet below.
With just one blowup on the lakeshore that turned into a shouting match which I laughed at from the other side of the lake, I would say it was worth bringing them along.
They also carried most of their own bulky clothes and even their own sleeping bags.

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While I had wanted to go farther from home, I was asked to stay close and as close to free as possible, my ankle still swells after a couple of miles, and my son begged for a lake to fish in. So, I knew anywhere meeting the conditions we wanted that was not still under white stuff would be crowded. Just too many people everywhere these days. In any case, we figured people watching on Friday could be fun and then we could either push up higher, or the crowds would at least thin out Saturday night.
People watching it turned out, was fun the whole time... but I will not be too irreverent by really going into the details of the unprepared and menagerie of people we saw.

Anyhow, except a few highlights, this one is mostly pictures.
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New aspen leaves, when they are slightly golden green are the prevailing theme as we climbed the short couple of miles to Silver Lake. For those not in Utah, there are multiple Silver Lakes. This one is up American Fork Canyon in the Wasatch Mountains and is a popular destination...
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Manic tent caterpillars. When they are in a frenzy they twitch around really fast, look it up on youtube if you haven't seen it.
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My eldest daughter and son climbed without complaint in the full bluebird, afternoon sun.
Lots of waterfalls, and snowmelt going on.
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Aspens in the late afternoon sun. This one was one of my favorites, as this one stand of trees caught the late light.
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We beat the crowds, so we could watch everyone else arrive. The kids passed on this site with its own grassy beach.
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The only bugs were people, or maybe all the bugs chose other victims besides us. The near full moon left me watching the silver light on the cliffs, peaks and falls long into the night as I swung happily on my hammock in peace. The only thing that was cold was my nose on the clear night.

The next morning I was up early and on my way to Silver Glance, leaving the kids sleeping in their tent.
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I reached a point with wet, muddy feet and second round of post holing where I decided Silver Glance was not in the cards. Plus the wind was down for the first time and I knew my son would be disappointed if I didn't wake him in time to fish.
The light though, was great. so forgive me for loving the view.
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Backlit aspen leaves lit up like christmas lights.
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Multiple shades of green.
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It was near this that I dropped my lens cap, just after we had finished a nice lunch with a view. We had some different types of tuna, triscuits and ritz crackers. Topped off with fine Mike n Ikes and sour gummi worms. Very agua dulce to finish the meal that way.
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So this was at least funny to me.
My youngest son had come home from school a week or so earlier and proudly said "Flowers are the reproductive private parts of plants."
"Yes, that is true," was all my wife could reply.
When my daughter was taking a picture of a flower on the way up the trail I leaned over and said "How indecent! What are you taking a picture of?!"
It became a bit of a running joke.

This was true too for this conifer.
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Saturday became increasingly cloudy. The temps were so pleasant that I had my merino top on all day. My ankle was a bit swollen and a little painful, so I spent some time in the hammock all while wearing the "uncool" bright orange compression sock that made my daughter shake her head in shame.
Even though I kept being serenaded by a yellow shouldered warbler that kept visiting camp (looked it up in a book with my son after the trip), I did have to break out the headphones. Ever since the day before Halestorm and Butcher Babies had found their way into my head- over and over (not kid appropriate, or maybe never really appropriate)... so I attempted replacement and finally succeeded with combination of Lake Street and The Lighthouse and the Whaler.

Afternoon view.
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Saturday evening produced a highlight. After sundown the wind died totally off for maybe 10 minutes. The dark blackness of the water came alive with brookies rising. So many that it seemed to portend the rain that was forecasted for the early morning. I called to the kids, but they were uninterested, so I watched for the few minutes until once again from the far side of the lake the water was stirred by the wind, and as the visible and audible breeze wooshed across toward me, it was over.

The next morning.
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We were unlucky.
Just a few miles away and over the mountain my wife was pounded by a great, early morning, thunderstorm. We saw some flashes in the very early 430am sky, but only a little bit of thunder and had a good hour or so of rain. If you are going to get wet, at least we could have had some real thunder to go with it.
We did get low dense clouds, which I love.

Some distant color near sunrise.
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Later just after sunrise, the rain turned to grapple, then to pellet snow. Lovely!
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We were right on the snowline. I couldn't get a picture, but 10' lower elevation below us did not have the dusting stick. We were also clearly on the edge of the storm. Above were the storm clouds, across the valley it was sunny.
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Clouds cleared into puffy marshmallows as we took our time leaving in the late morning, early afternoon.
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Action shot.
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Back at the trailhead. Back in the early spring we had walked across this lake on snowshoes.
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All in all. The two kids who followed me had a great time. Not necessarily a great time fishing, but we laughed, ate candy, glissaded a little, soaked in the cold water, saw some nice weather, and were able to ignore the other people around us when we wanted.

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Jul 5, 2014
I just love the color pallettes that you guys get out there, especially with the emerald color of the lake water.
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