24 July 2008

Chalk Creek Pass and a Marmot

After climbing at Monitor Rock and a stop at Princeton Resort Hot Springs we looked for a camp up Chalk Creek. All four National Forest camps had signs out - Campground Full. Luckily we don't need any smoky official campground to stay in. We headed higher and passed St. Elmo, an old mining town. We took the junction toward Hancock Lake. After many bumps, we started to find sites but they were taken. I was the master camp finder and not worried but it was getting late! I found a side road and put the truck into 4x4 for a bumpy but worthwhile cruise to one of the best campsites of recent memory. Certainly the best of this year. The picture shows us at timberline, about 11,500 ft. with a little receding sunlight. It doesn't get much better.

The next day we hiked up Chalk Creek Pass. A visitor suprised us at lunch. It hesitantly approached as Julia shot pictures. She captured the marmot pretty well, I'd say.

One more amazing thing we saw is a collapsing mining structure. This thing was just about to fall on the road! See this and other pics here!

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