We woke up at 2 am on Friday and drove the 4 hours from Rapid City, SD to the West Tensleep Trailhead in the Bighorn Mountains of Wyoming. The weather for the weekend was forcast to be perfect. The parking lot was half full when we arrived at 7 am. This would be my brothers first time he had ever been hiking in the mountains before. I had taken him up Harney Peak in the Black Hills back home, but nothing this extreme. We planned to set up camp at Mirror Lake and hike to Lost Twin Lakes the next day. From there we would go east and ascend the draniage and head up Peak Angeline. We made good time to Mirror Lake and quickly found a place to set up camp on the south side of the lake on a ridge. As soon as we stopped and began to set up camp I knew the bugs were going to be a problem. The insect repellent didn't even seem like it worked at all. We had to keep moving or stay in the saftey of the tent. We went to bed as soon as the sun went down as we both knew we were in for a long day tomorrow.
hike to lost twins
cliffs around lost twin lakes
We woke the next morning as soon as the sun came up. We ate, got our packs ready, and were on the trail to lost twin lakes by 7 am. This was a smart move, as we had about an hour of hiking without the misquetos. The morning air was crisp and cool. After a little over an hour we arrived at lost twin lakes. The lakes are an amazing sight. It is definetley one of the most beautiful places in the Bighorns. The upper lake still had sheets of ice in the back towards the cliffs. I wanted to explore the lakes, but I knew I could do that on the way back if time allowed. We spotted our route up and headed towards the drainage.
looking up at the drainage where we left the trail
We headed up the boulders and started towards Peak Angeline. This proved to be the most difficult part of the hike due to the misquetos. Everytime we would try to stop and get a break we got attacked by swarms of misquetos. The bug spray didnt even seem to help one bit. Eventually we made it to the edge of the boulder field and they thinned out. All that was left was about 45 minutes of boulder hopping to the top. We summited and hung out on the top for about an hour and enjoyed the weather and the view. My brothers first time in the mountains and he made it up to 12,000 feet. We hiked back to camp exausted and ate supper. Ramen noodles never tasted so good before. We hiked backed to the car the next morning and drove home. The weather was perfect and I couldn't have asked for a better time.
getting closer to the boulder field
Paul making his way across the boulder field
starting up the steep part to the summit
view looking up at summit
view back the way we came
on the top! 11,946 feet
ringbone, willow, romeo, long, and martin lakes from summit
pauls summit shot
summit of peak angeline
heading back down
Peak Angeline, right(background), from loaf mountain overlook