Hunter Fryingpan Wilderness - North Fork Lake Creek, Twining Peak, Deer Mountain (July 10 & 11, 2014)
The North Fork Lake Creek trail is just East of Independence Pass and people usually skip it for the more popular Lost Man trail on the other side of the Divide. I have done this myself on a couple of occasions. Now I realize what I've been missing. The upper basin is a real gem - two scenic unnamed lakes sit at the base of Deer Mountain and the views towards the Continental Divide and its 13ers are breathtaking.
Early mornning Sun on Point 13,545 & Twining Peak
Point 13,545 and Continental Divide
Point 13,545 and Continental Divide Panorama
This unnamed lake is right on the pass West of Deer Mountain
About half of the lake was still frozen
Collegiate Peaks Wilderness - Lake Rebecca,Texas Creek, Birthday Peak, Mt Harvard (September 15 & 16, 2014)
Upper Texas Creek Basin (this is the unofficial name that I gave this beautiful basin) sits just West of Horn Fork Basin. While the latter sees ridiculously high volume of people climbing Mt Harvard and Columbia Peak (both 14ers), Texas Creek remains rarely visited. It is much harder to get there and if one follows the trails, it'd take much longer to get there. I spent a night at Bear Lake in Horn Fork Basin a month earlier and can boldly claim that Texas Creek Basin is the more scenic of the two - even Mt Harvard looks better from this angle.
The basin is home to two beautiful lakes, Lake Rebecca (where I spent the night) and Lake Claire. They are less than a mile apart. The place is overgrown with blueberries and the wildlife is very active - big horn sheep, wild goats, deer & elk. Surprisingly, I didn't see, nor hear any coyotes.
Mt Harvard and Texas Creek Basin panorama
Storm brooding over Upper Texas Creek Basin
Sunset over Lake Rebecca - Mt Yale in the background
Sunrise over Lake Rebecca - Mt Yale in the background
Peaceful reflection in Lake Rebecca
Fall colors around Lake Rebecca
Fall colors below Lake Rebecca. The blueberry leaves had turned bright red color.
Point 12,728 reflection
Texas Creek Basin with blue skies
Mt Harvard close-up
Mt Harvard from the pass West of Birthday Peak.
The long ridge between Birthday Peak & Mt Harvard. It reminded me of a dragon's back
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