Explorer | 41 pts
I try to make this trip every year, but had missed it the previous two years. It was a warm 80 degrees @ the trailhead that Wednesday afternoon at 3:00pm when I started. The trail can be quite vicious when it comes to mosquitoes, but they were kept at bay throughout the 4 day trip with 100% deet...a necessity for this trail. The only time I avoided bugs was when I made this hike one week in early June, bugs not out in force then. I proceeded for 4.5 hours up to the saddle half way between the top of the switch backs and the Dinwoody Lakes area, my final fishing destination. I set up camp approx. 200 yds off of the trail, and for the next two days used it as a base camp to explore and fish the area. Though this was my 10th outing in this area, it never ceases to amaze and challenge. The hike to Dinwoody Lakes is a 6 hour mostly uphill affair from the trail head, and quite grueling after a long plane ride. However, worth every sweaty step. I saw more people than usual this time (a group of 30-40 boy scouts on the way in, several pairs hiking, and a few solos like myself)but generally speaking the area was still remote, with plenty of solitude. What was perhaps the most unusual, beautiful (and terrifiying) part of this trip was the intense thunderstorm activity Thursday night and Friday night. My North Face Canyonlands performed flawlessly (sorry for the plug, but when something performs this well...) and I stayed dry. The weather moved in around 5pm each of those two evenings, and provided quite a show. Hail, heavy rain, high winds - great for sleeping once you get past the terror of the lightning strikes and echoing thunderclaps. Thunder in the backcountry is nothing like in a populated area...the clarity of the sound and almost stereo like rumbling. You really felt the thunder more than heard it.
Anyway, spent two days hiking a 10 mile area fishing, climbing and enjoying the view. The fishing in @ DInwoody Lakes is really unlike anything I have encountered. I always catch fish! The seclusion and lack of fishing pressure might have something to do with it.
I like to think that this kind of trip is not so much an escape, but a way to keep balance and perspective in order to cope back in the day to day world. The shear beauty and immense proportions of the Wind River Range forces perspective on you. My hike out was quick and purposeful. I actually made it out faster than I ever had before, I believe because I was invigorated rather than exhausted from my trip (it was mostlly downhill, especially helpful on the grueling switchbacks) That was a first for me, as I usually come out to the trailhead whipped and ready for a cheeseburger. The Glacier Trail has such a contrast of features that I would highly reccommend it for any skill level..be sure to take in all that surrounds you on your way in and out.