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Weminuche Wilderness 1999

Exploring the garden wall

The morning dawned very inauspiciously. Mostly clouds with leaden skies. At least it was not raining. We fixed breakfast, but did so standing, because it looked like it could rain any time. The six of us had planned to make this a layover day, but the weather was not looking good, so we decided to not roam very far. Tim was hoping to do some fishing in the afternoon. So we all took off, and walked back up to the Garden Wall, that was just north of the Knife Edge on the CDT. The flowers were really lovely. We photographed, and took the low route back which cuts off the CDT near the Knife Edge, and heads to the lower end of Trout lake. (We speculated that this trail, which in a way parallels the CDT, may be an early season alternative to the CDT, when snow we make the steep and exposed slopes of the Garden Wall unsafe.) We saw a really spectacular display of blue Columbine, seemingly rare for this late in the season. We got back to camp around 12:30, just as it was starting to rain. So we all dove into our respective tents. I had started working on a Tony Hillerman novel (Fallen Man) and Susie had a book as well, brought for just this circumstance, in tentia. We spent the afternoon reading, and wondering if the rain would ever stop. A bath seemed pretty remote, but I jumped in the pond for a quick rinse off.

Susie and I opted for dinner in tentia. We had lots of time to cook, and the big vestibule of the Sierra Designs Stretch Dome is ideally suited for such. Dinner was our version of a Santa Fe chicken and rice. It is wonderful, and it makes a lot. It is made with a black bean and spice mix from Knorr, and we add dried tomatoes and rice and FD chicken. The rest of the crew fixed dinner outside, but it took Tim and Diane several attempts to complete it without rain.

After dinner, we read our books and listened to the wind blow the rain into the tent. We finished our books about 9:30 pm, and hit the sack. A disappointing day.

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Roger A. Jenkins, 1999