Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Timothy Lake and Beyond

Being overly confident can be a good thing sometimes.  And other times, it will give you sore legs and blisters on your feet!

That's what happened to Jason and I a few weeks ago, when we decided to hike 15 miles around Timothy Lake and beyond.  Yeah, and we knew how long the trail was before we set out.

Courtesy: Wikipedia
To give you an idea of just how large this lake is-- this is an aerial shot from Wikipedia.  Its the Y-shaped lake in the middle, bottom of the picture.  It looks just as big from the ground too.

And despite the many warning signs posted around the trail, we thought we could handle it.

Hell, we'd climbed a Mountain less than a month earlier-- 13+ miles didn't seem terribly difficult, especially since most of the trail was flat.  So we harnessed Khloe, and set out on the trail.

I've never been to Timothy Lake before, and I'm excited to go back and just set up camp and hang out for a weekend.  The campsites (which we didn't take any pictures of)  are awesome, the lake is gorgeous, and because we decided to go the day after Labor Day it wasn't packed.

We hiked, and hiked, and hiked, and hiked some more.  Making our way around the massive lake.  Like our trip up Larch Mountain, we stumbled into a few other hikers who told us we were crazy to start our walk so late in the afternoon.  Also like our trek to the top of Larch Mountain, we decided they were the ones that were crazy (We all know how this is going to end)

Unbeknownst to us at the time, we hit the halfway point and decided to take a short detour to Little Crater Lake.  Part of the whole reason we chose this hike in the first place was because we wanted to see this natural wonder.

It did not disappoint.

Yes, it really is that blue!

We took a long break, and realized this would have been the perfect lunch spot if we had bothered to pack a lunch.  That's right folks, we headed out on a 15 mile hike without any food-- but we had tons of water.  Don't worry, we regretted that decision as soon as we left.

But back to the story.  The most interesting thing I learned on our hike was from this detour... And because I knew I wouldn't fully remember how to describe this fun fact, I took a picture of it:

Cool right?

Anyway, we hung out and admired the lake for a few more minutes before we walked back to the Timothy Lake trail.   It was about that time that we learned, we were only halfway to the end of the trail.

It was also about that time that our tummies started grumbling.  Like I said above, we decided not to pack a lunch or food.  We'd had a big breakfast, and were planning on having a delicious pizza dinner-- so we thought we didn't need lunch.

Boy were we wrong.

We walked and walked for what seemed like hours.  All the while, snipping at each other as our hunger took over.  At one point, I thought I remembered we had some trail mix in our backpack from a previous hike.  But I was sadly disappointed when I opened the food pocket to find it empty.  I felt like one of those cartoon characters who opens their change purse to buy something, but instead of money moths fly out.

About two miles away from the finish like I decided to take us on a one-mile detour to Meditation Point.  I really don't know what I was thinking, except that I figured we weren't ever doing this hike again, so we might as well do it.

It was pretty, but not worth doing the detour when we were starving and our feet hurt.

We limped our way the last two miles to the north end of the park.  All we had to do was cross over the dam, and we would be at the car.  I've got to tell you, I've never been so happy to see a fucking dam in my entire life.

When we got the car, we traded our hiking shoes for flip flops, put on some comfy sweatshirts and piled in to make our way back down the mountain.

You probably noticed that Mount Hood was hiding in all of my pictures of the lake.  But she finally came out as we drove down the mountain.

I always feel so lucky to live in such a beautiful place, even though I had just had my ass handed to me by a 15 mile hike.

To celebrate our amazing achievement-- did I forget to mention that 15 miles is the longest Jason and I have ever hiked before????  We stopped at my pizza place on the mountain: The Zig Zag Inn.

I still have dreams about this pizza!  It was so good, we ate all but two rows.   And this time, we made sure that Khloe wasn't left alone with the box of take home pizza.  (She ate it last time, and Jason has never fully gotten over it)

This was a great trip, despite the fact that we forgot to bring food with us.  We learned a great deal about our bodies and how far we can push them.  And it gave me a renewed sense of strength after my breakdown at the top of Larch Mountain.

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