Day 8 – Thursday, July 19. We had to wake at 6:30am in order to pack camp and be ready for a 9:30am pickup. Megan flew Steve & I over to Keele Peak
and what we call
Emerald lake first. No fresh bear sign there, but astounding amounts of moose poop. Phil & Sandy followed soon after. I think I must have left a
bear mace container in the left storage pod; we can't find it in our gear. We still have one can of bear mace, three sets of bear bangers, a bear
horn and the shotgun.
Once camp is set up we started fishing. I couldn't get anything on flies, but Phil caught three large lake trout on a spoon out of the glacial
stream emptying into the lake next to camp. Did some laundry. Rain has threatened all day, but so far we've seen nothing. Had
Southwestern Couscous for lunch,
(most excellent!), and Chilimac and
SC&BBC for dinner.
We're lower in elevation than our last campsite at Sheep pass, and more protected from the wind as well. As a result, the vegetation is much taller and more lush. Finding firewood for this evening's fire is much easier and less of a chore. Plenty of arctic willow four and five feet tall with lots of dead branches we can easily break off. We take the opportunity to burn all our burnable garbage from the last four days. It is still daylight at 11:30pm. We have not yet seen Keele Peak as the clouds have kept it hidden. If the clouds dissipate, I think I should be able to see it from my tent door. Today was also a food resupply day, so we spend some time organizing and re-organizing our food stash. Any time we get a resupply, our bear vaults are always full to overflowing and we have to find some way to store the excess. We each ended up placing our extra food in waterproof stuff sacks and then humping them over to a very large rock. It's the same rock we used back in 2007. We are not sure it is bear proof. But it is difficult for us to climb up on it and it is well away from camp. Not the best solution, but without any taller trees within a reasonable distance, it is far better than our last camp.