Here are some pictures and video I took when Mike, Olaf, Alex and I went up
to the Upper Gothic Basin... Following our very successful (great
pictures!) excursion to Mt. Dickerman, Alex picked Mike and I up the next day to
hike back into Gothic Basin.
The Weeden Creek trail branches off of the road that goes to the abandoned
town of Monte Cristo. There are two ways to get to the trail, the old way
is to walk the Monte Cristo road until it intersects the trail. This
requires you to cross the Sauk River. A newer trail just before the road
crosses the Sauk allows you to avoid the river crossing - a good thing. We
took the latter, and though it is a bit up and down, it's a very pleasant
lowland trail which is heavily forested. Towards the top, due to good
snow, we avoided the trail to the lower basin, and went directly to the upper
basin at Foggy Lake. We left the trailhead at 10:15, and
arrived at the very top a little after 1:30. Click
this link to view a 3D rendering of the trail on a topographic map.
Our plan was to set camp, and consider scrambling Del Campo. However, a
haze restricted the sun's ability to soften the snow adequately to kick steps
above the lake, and we left our crampons at home. So, nothing left to do
but relax, and wait for sunset and pictures. Sunset was disappointing, but
we were well rewarded with a nice sunrise. I've also included some video
that both Mike and I shot, but please excuse my narration as I frequently
referred to the area as Gotham Basin! Mike and I did make the scramble
up Del Campo in August, 2002 though...
hike up... - The hike in follows
the Weeden Creek trail, named after O. N. Weeden, one of the
original homesteaders of the area. I took this picture of Olaf
and Alex as the trail breaks out to expose some of the surrounding
nice slot canyon... - About
two thirds of the way, we hit a couple stream crossings - this one
having a nice slot canyon. I took this shot of Mike as he
broke off to explore a bit. This canyon would be very inviting
itself for a scramble in warmer weather...
camp... - Mike scores again by
finding a magnificent perch on which to set camp. The view
outside our vestibule was directly at Monte Cristo and the Wilmans with
Peak (video 1.5 meg) off to the left a
bit. I took this shot shortly after everything was settled,
and we set about exploring the area. Mike
also took some video (2.9 meg)...
After some debate between Mike and
myself, I set the sunrise alarm for 6:20 AM. When it goes
off the next morning, Mike peeks out and freaks! The color
had just started, and he wanted to make a small rise next door for
the photographic advantage. He maniacally gets dressed, and
when I get in the way (I want out also...), I get a head butt for
my troubles! Never get in the way of a photographer that's
late for a sunrise!
Mike gets to his vantage, I decide to get my
shots from our front door. Normally, I would list these
pictures as links off of bullets, but I think the colors warrant
the thumbnails! They appear in order as the sun came over a
ridge to the east... As always, click the thumbnails to see
the full size images.
In between print shots, I also took some
Overall this sunrise turned out to be pretty
impressive, and surprising. I expected haze to obscure the
good colors, but it was clear enough to shine through.
at sunrise... - As the sun
started cresting the neighboring ridges, Alex and Olaf started
to stir. Alex took this shot of me as first light shone on
our camp site....
Peak & Foggy Pass... - Once
the sun crested the ridge, it was time to look behind, and
check out the back lit slopes. I took this shot of
Gothic Peak and the pass as the colors peaked.
Campo... - This interesting
peak was literally at our doorstep! We had planned to scramble
it some time during the weekend, but conditions were too icy,
and we didn't bring crampons. So all we could do was sit
back, and look... Also, here is some good video of morning colors of Del Campo and
other sites (5.2 meg)...
and Alex wait for Olaf... - On
the way out, I took this shot of Mike and Alex as they
encourage Olaf to attempt a standing glissade down a
slope. I capture Mike and Olaf as they attempt
standing glissades down one of the slopes (2.5 meg)...
Will they make it successfully?
Videos... - Mike and I also
took more video scenes during the trip:
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