The Twins

Greg and I spent a great weekend camping with Brad and Dawn (a few miles from Waldo Lake. Greg wasn’t able to take Friday off, so the rest of us drove to the campsite and set up and he joined us later. Timmy and Buddy took turns keeping me company in the backseat on the drive down.

It’s very satisfying sitting around in the woods on a beautiful summer evening after a long week at work! And where we were camped was VERY quiet. As a bonus we got some pink-tinted clouds at dusk which looked really pretty. This was after the pink was mostly gone.

There were some bats flying around too. Here are the boys admiring the bats from the safety of the bug tent (the bugs weren’t horrible, but they were definitely out and about).

Saturday morning dawned bright and beautiful. Timmy celebrated the new day by peeing on my tent. But the guys got it cleaned up fast with no harm done, plus how can you be mad at that sweet Timmy face?

Our hike for the day was up to the summit of The Twins. This shot was taken from a distance on Sunday and you can see how the mountain got its name:

On the topo map this mountain is called The Twins, but the Forest Service seems conflicted about the name:

The first part of the trail is relatively level, traveling through the forest:

The trail crosses the PCT and starts climbing. We passed some snowmelt ponds. The water is pretty stagnant, though. You’d have to be desperate to swim in there or drink from there (even filtered):

The last push to the summit is exposed with no tree cover. It had been nice and cool in the forest but out here in the open it was pretty dang warm:

This is also where we started getting some views. There’s Maiden Peak and Diamond Peak.

The trail gets a little less steep for the last push to the summit.

Oh the views up there! Spectacular! The BLUE BLUE waters of Waldo Lake:

Numerous Cascade peaks.

Mt. Jefferson, Mt. Washington, and the Three Sisters:

The Three Sisters and Broken Top:

Diamond Peak and Gold Lake:

Pointy Mt. Thielsen and snowy Mt. McLoughlin:

Crane Prairie Reservoir:

Wickiup Reservoir:

Davis Lake:

Brad and Dawn waited in the shade with the hot dogs while Greg and I visited the other summit:

Looking back at the first summit where Dawn is taking a picture:

Maiden Peak in the foreground and pointy Mt. Thielsen way in the distance:

Diamond Peak again:

There were some really old gnarled and weathered tree skeletons intertwined in the rocks. Cool!

Greg followed a boot path below the summit to find a geocache. See him?

How about now?

Back at the other summit we managed to tear ourselves away from the views and head back down. On the way up we had seen this strange pile of cinder blocks:

On the way down Brad decided to summit cinder block mountain:

Dawn followed suit!

The trail was VERY dusty. This picture I took on the way down shows the dust cloud around the dogs and Brad.

Back at the trailhead there was a large group about to head out on the trail. They weren’t interested in chit-chat and just wanted to know how far it was to the summit. We asked if they had a map and they showed us their “map” which was a hand-drawn thing. Dawn gave them her photocopy from the Sullivan book. None of them carried packs. Most of them carried just one small water bottle. They seemed very unprepared for a hot uphill hike during the warmest part of the day. I wonder if they made it.

After the hike we drove down to the Shadow Bay area of Waldo Lake to cool off. We took a spin through the campground so we could fill up our water containers, but every single water faucet was taped up and unavailable. Also, there were only about a dozen campers in the whole place. Most of the 90-some sites were weirdly vacant. It was like a bizarre campground ghost town. We stopped at the camp host to ask about the water situation and two other campers who were already there asked on our behalf. The camp host told them that the pumps were down and until the system was online and properly tested there would be no water. They gave the campers a $2 discount as a result. Of course nowhere on the Shadow Bay Campground web page does it say that the water is off. And of course there were no signs at the entrance to the campground either. Not a big deal for us, but a rude awakening for anyone stopping in to camp there!

We continued down to the boat ramp area and cooled off in the lake. Ah that felt good!

Buddy had a very good time fetching a stick over and over and over again:

Timmy doesn’t like being in the water, but he’s happy to drink it:

He’s also happy to get attention from Greg. I love this shot:

We chilled out at the campsite for the rest of the afternoon until dinner. Brad serenaded us through the evening with his impressive belching skills and we played a rousing game of Catch Phrase. (Love that game!)

We had lots of fun this weekend! It was great to spend time with friends and happy dogs and it was cool to explore an area I’ve never been to before. Can’t wait to go back and do more hiking in that area!