wind river range, elkhart park to lower jean lake

Ben

Member
Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
1,873
Mid september 2013 my brother and i did a hike in the Wind Rivers. This was our first time there. I rode from Boise to Pinedale on my motorcycle through some rain and ended up making it to Wyoming some time around midnight just about the coldest and wettest i've ever been. I got out my sleeping bag and waited for my brother to arrive from Provo. He some how took longer than me getting there. When he arrived i rode with him the rest of the way up to Elkhart Park and camped there.

We wanted to hike up near Gannet Peak, but we didn't end up making it that far. We got rained on heavy enough our first day that we had to set up camp just to stay dry enough after only a couple hours.

Here are some moose we saw near the trailhead. Two calves.
wind river range 20130916 015.JPG


These were the general trail conditions starting out.
wind river range 20130916 019.JPG


wind river range 20130916 020.JPG

wind river range 20130916 030.JPG


Junction.
wind river range 20130916 035.JPG


Very cloudy first day.
wind river range 20130916 041.JPG


The stream running below there is actually the trail.
wind river range 20130916 045.JPG


Hobbs Lake, i think, under the clouds. Not far beyond here we had to tent up to get out of the rain. Every thing was getting too wet. Fortunately the next day was clearer.
wind river range 20130916 047.JPG


Drying out every thing we own the next morning.
wind river range 20130916 056.JPG


Waiting for every thing to dry.
wind river range 20130916 057.JPG


And then we got on our way. We didn't really have an itinerary after the previous day, we just hiked to see what was there. Some lake between Hobbs and Seneca.
wind river range 20130916 074.JPG


Making it to Seneca Lake was nice. There's some thing i like about an enormous lake that you can only get to by walking.
Optimized-wind (2).jpg


The trail wound along the west side.
Optimized-wind(2).jpg


At the upper end of Seneca the trail ascends a little. Past a small pond.
wind river range 20130916 105.JPG


And then very shortly to Little Seneca Lake. There's also some thing i like about mountain lakes with islands.
wind river range 20130916 113.JPG


Beyond Little Seneca the views open up a little more. We passed a small lake near a junction with the trail going to Lester Pass.
wind river range 20130916 122.JPG


Clouds this day were nice for the most part, except blocking some distant views of the higher peaks. Trail leveled out here for a ways.
wind river range 20130916 125.JPG

wind river range 20130916 127.JPG

wind river range 20130916 132.JPG


Plenty of unnamed lakes and ponds.
wind river range 20130916 148.JPG

wind river range 20130916 151.JPG

wind river range 20130916 157.JPG

wind river range 20130916 160.JPG


The trail goes up a little bit, and then back down a little bit to the crossing of Fremont Creek. Nice bridge. I think i've actually seen a picture where it used to have a second railing.
wind river range 20130916 178.JPG


Spencer on the bridge.
Optimized-wind(4).jpg

Looking up Fremont Creek.
wind river range 20130916 183.JPG


It was nice and open on the other side.
wind river range 20130916 187.JPG


I like this rock.
wind river range 20130916 190.JPG


Beyond Fremont the trail ascends a little bit before leveling out again.
wind river range 20130916 204.JPG


More lakes and ponds up here, especially with all the recent rain.
wind river range 20130916 212.JPG


We found the dark clouds again. We never made it all the way to them though.
wind river range 20130916 214.JPG


It was funny, the way ahead looked so dark and ominous, but turn your head, and back the way we'd came looked so light and inviting.
wind river range 20130916 215.JPG


We went on a little farther.
wind river range 20130916 216.JPG


And Lower Jean Lake started to come into view. An other very long one.
wind river range 20130916 225.JPG

wind river range 20130916 227.JPG


Good view of light side and the dark side.
Optimized-wind(5).jpg


Looking down Lower Jean from the end.
wind river range 20130916 242.JPG


And looking at the dark peaks.
wind river range 20130916 243.JPG


Here we decided we'd go ahead and turn back. We'd seen nearly enough, and we needed to make it possible to hike out and drive home the next day. I believe we were about 14 miles out from the trail head here. A last look back.
wind river range 20130916 256.JPG


And we were back in the sun. Mostly.
wind river range 20130916 257.JPG


Clouds.
wind river range 20130916 272.JPG


Sun.
wind river range 20130916 290.JPG


wind river range 20130916 293.JPG


wind river range 20130916 294.JPG


wind river range 20130916 295.JPG


wind river range 20130916 299.JPG


wind river range 20130916 305.JPG


wind river range 20130916 310.JPG


wind river range 20130916 321.JPG


wind river range 20130916 322.JPG


wind river range 20130916 324.JPG


wind river range 20130916 330.JPG


wind river range 20130916 334.JPG


We ended up camping back at Little Seneca Lake.
wind river range 20130916 340.JPG

wind river range 20130916 368.JPG


The next morning we just had to hike out. We passed the llama camp at the head of Seneca Lake. If you look closely you can see them, there were around five of them.
wind river range 20130916 378.JPG


Farther along the trail had submerged under the rising water. I don't remember it being that way on the hike out.
wind river range 20130916 400.JPG


Hobbs Lake in the sun.
wind river range 20130916 422.JPG


And a less than perfect view from photographers point on our way out. Much better than it would have been on our way in though.
wind river range 20130916 431.JPG


Featured image for home page:
slide.jpg
 
Last edited:

Curt

Member
Joined
Feb 1, 2014
Messages
404
Nice pictures! I went there along pretty much the same route a couple years back over a long weekend . Didn't get in as far as you did. Part of the fun of looking at your pictures is that there was a lot that I recognize. Thanks for letting me relive the experience through your pictures.
 

Eugene

Member
Joined
Mar 13, 2012
Messages
139
Nice pictures. Weather sure gets unpredictable come September in the high country. I plan to do a hike in the Winds this summer - hopefully July or August.
 

Vegan.Hiker

Member
Joined
Jul 5, 2014
Messages
2,094
Awesome write-up Ben. You do a really good job telling the story and take really good pictures. Those lake shots are all beautiful.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Ben

Nick

-
.
Joined
Aug 9, 2007
Messages
12,934
Riding a motorcycle through the rain just to go backpack through the rain. Rough start! I've seen that exact trail in similarly soupy conditions, but lucky for me, I was headed the other direction and eventually to a hotel! Great report!
 

Ben

Member
Joined
Sep 12, 2014
Messages
1,873
: ) the ride back was dry enough, also it was worth it any way.
 

Artemus

I walk
.
Joined
Jun 25, 2012
Messages
4,414
Nice report! That's our windies, wading through trail potholes filled with horse dung filled rainwater :) Great white backpacking garb! I love the split boulders like that too.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Ben

isleroyaleguy

Member
Joined
Jan 23, 2014
Messages
167
Nice report!
Beautiful pics as well.
Thanks for brightening up a winters day with great memories.
We were in that area a week before you guy's. We stayed at Upper and Lower Jean lakes. Had awesome fishing in both. Had all kinds of weather too. We ended up hiking out from Lower Jean in blinding snow at times and down that same muddy trail....Ahhh the Winds. ..can't wait to get back. Already planning this year's trip.
Thanks for sharing.
IRG
 
Last edited:

John Goering

Member
Joined
Sep 30, 2014
Messages
446
Thanks Ben, enjoyed the trip. I have dumped water out of my boots riding and have been stuck in a tent all day during a storm, but never on the same outing-----
 
  • Like
Reactions: Ben

Bob

Trailmaster
Joined
Mar 3, 2013
Messages
2,799
Nice report! That's our windies, wading through trail potholes filled with horse dung filled rainwater :) Great white backpacking garb! I love the split boulders like that too.

Horse *****, only place I found that was going in and out of Elkhart, everywhere else it's just mtn sheep and elk........ :)
 

Bob

Trailmaster
Joined
Mar 3, 2013
Messages
2,799
Ha Hobbs lake and trail looked like that last Sept for us........ but then there was the Wind..
 

Bob

Trailmaster
Joined
Mar 3, 2013
Messages
2,799
Victoria ...... Welcome.
Run a search on the Wind Rivers, you will find a lot of us on BCP go there, so there are a lot of pics and info.
 
Similar threads
Thread starter Title Forum Replies Date
TheMountainRabbit Horse Ridge to Mount Febbas (Wind River Range) - July 2021 Backpacking 18
westy Wind River Range Backpacking 4
wsp_scott Wind River Range (beginning of Sept 2021) Meet Up (Members Only) 11
TheMountainRabbit NW Wind River Range - late August 2020 Backpacking 3
travel2walk trip report: Wind River Range – Ross Lakes, Bear Basin, Grasshopper Glacier, & Dinwoody Creek loop, Aug-Sep 2020 Trip Reports 41
M Wind River Range - Green River Lakes Trailhead Trip Planning 9
Gunnahafta Green River <> Big Sandy WIND RIVER RANGE Trip Planning 1
Matt Van Natta HELP: Wind River Range, Baker Lake to Green River Lakes Trip Planning 7
TrektheWorld Wind River Range 5 Day Loop Backpacking 16
H Wind River Range route planning Trip Planning 6
10KFly Wind River Range in Late September Trip Planning 6
b.stark Wind River Range 2009 "From The Vault" Backpacking 9
blueeyes Wind River Range August 2018 Backpacking 11
Lowro East Temple Peak - Wind River Range Backpacking 13
DuneElliot Backpacking Wyoming's Wind River Range, August 2018 Backpacking 4
b.stark Wind River Range 2007 "From The Vault" Backpacking 4
Wolverine1875 Wind River Range: Llama Trekking from Dickinson Park to The Cirque of The Towers Trip Planning 19
Curt Wind River Range - July 2018 Backpacking 26
DaveNC Wind River Range August-September - with time to roam Trip Planning 8
pstm13 Texas Pass Cirque of Towers Lower Wind River Range August 2018 Trip Planning 7
DuneElliot Wind River Range, WY: August 2018 Trip Planning 3
Cburton A week along the Continental Divide in Wind River Range Backpacking 20
MikeM 4 Days in the Wind River Range Trip Planning 8
AbinadiWitness Wind River Range: Chasing Dreams - 15-19 August 2016 Backpacking 2
fiber Wind River Range, South - Sept 2-6, 2017 Backpacking 13
Cburton Wind River Range Priorities Trip Planning 10
RyanP Wind River Range, early September---how to prepare for weather General Discussion 7
Rello Wind River Range, WY - Late August Trip Planning 3
Matt Van Natta Hammocking the Wind River Range Part 2 Backpacking 7
Matt Van Natta Hammocking the Wind River Range Part 1 Backpacking 7
N Wind River Range, easy peaks to climb Trip Planning 33
Ugly Wind River Range- Part 2, Pyramid Lake Backpacking 3
Ugly Wind River Range Part 1- Cirque to Shadow Lake Backpacking 20
L Wind River Range Trip Planning 4
jjmcwill Southern Wind River Range - Texas Pass on Aug 11th Trip Planning 44
isleroyaleguy Wind River Range. D&A TOUR 2014 - Part 2 Backpacking 5
isleroyaleguy Wind River Range. D&A TOUR 2014 - Part 1 Backpacking 6
BirdMan445 Wind River Range ; Popo Agie Wilderness - Video attached Backpacking 5
robertshane Wind River Range Snowout??? Trip Planning 2
Antlerking Wind River Range - August 2013 Backpacking 4
tarpon6 9 Days Solo Wind River Range Washakie Pass, Grave Lake, Hailey Pass Loop. Backpacking 6
climbhigh1119 1-2 spots open for Wind River Range August 16-24 Meet Up (Members Only) 4
Jen Wind River Range - Baptiste and Lonesome Lakes Loops Backpacking 13
Bob Wind River Range Traverse Backpacking 14
lostlandscapes Clear Lake, Wind River Range Trip Planning 1
lostlandscapes Deep Lake, Wind River Range Trip Planning 0
lostlandscapes Cirque of the Towers, Wind River Range Trip Planning 1
jjmcwill Moderate routes that visit glaciers in Wind River Range? Trip Planning 0
lostlandscapes Beaver Park, Wind River Range: Sept. 1-3 Backpacking 12
lostlandscapes Wind River Range: Big Sandy/Deep/Cirque/Texas Loop Backpacking 24

Similar threads

Don't like ads? Become a BCP Supporting Member and kiss them all goodbye. Click here for more info.

Top