Fadgen's Adventures

Fadgen's Adventures
Green Creek Lake

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Hiking Around Bozeman with Taylor

Over the last few years this blog has been mainly the John and Dylan show with an occasional Tamara sighting. The fourth member of the family, Taylor has pointed this out to me on several occasions. This past weekend was her time to finally be included!

I travelled over to Bozeman on Thursday night and stopped at an old friend’s house for beers, an excellent steak and a place to sleep.  Friday morning I was again on the road, arriving in Bozeman in the early afternoon.

After heading to the local sporting goods stores, looking for deals, I suggested  we float the river.  Taylor jumped at the chance.  After gathering a couple of inner tubes, we were on the water of the Madison River in 90 degree sunshine enjoying the two hour float.  Unfortunately I left the camera in the car.

 Our plan Saturday morning was to head up to Lava Lake for an overnight backpacking trip.  The Lava Lake trail is a “popular” trail just south of Big Sky, that takes you into the Lee Metcalf Wilderness Area.  We were off at the crack of 8AM for breakfast at our favorite bakery in Four Corners, followed by the short drive to the trailhead.

The hike up the 3 mile trail wasn’t too bad – not too steep, plus we had cloud cover most of the way.  We caught a glimpse of a moose cow and calf(s) before we ran into the two guys that scared them.  Luckily, the moose were interested in getting away rather than confronting the humans.

In a little less than two hours we were at Lava Lake where the skies were a bit hazy from fires near Missoula, as well as some cloud cover.   We lounged around the outlet for a while before setting up camp in a semi-secluded spot – or so we thought.  During the course of the afternoon we probably saw 40 other people and had at least a dozen walk through our camp!  When the Montana trail guide book says popular it really means crowded, especially by Idaho standards. 

During the course of the hike, Taylor amazed me with all her knowledge of parasites and bacteria as well as the description of the harm they will do to your body.  Glad I went into engineering...
Taylor ready to get rid of her pack.

Lava Lake
My plan was to hit a peak nearby called Jumbo Mountain, but with no trail and thick brush, we decided to take a stroll up to another mountain called Table Mountain.  This one actually had a trail. Once camp was set up, we started hiking up the Table Mountain trail, but as we progressed the overcast skies started spitting rain.  So, we headed back down.  After a mile or so, the temperature started dropping as the rain and wind picked up forcing us into the tent where we enjoyed some quality reading time. 

Pikas!  They were all over the place.

Frustrated by the cold and rain and it only being 5PM, I offered up the option of packing up and heading back down.  I figured we could relax and hike somewhere on else Sunday.  After some thought, Taylor agreed.  What really made up my mind was the fact that someone had grabbed my flask of wine that I had chilling in the lake.

Once we had a break in the rain, we quickly packed up and scooted down the trail back to the car.  Of course as we drove away the skies behind us cleared – oh well.  That night in Taylor's apartment we cooked up our planned dinner for the night - ”In The Wild Chef” Lemon Ginger Chicken with couscous.  Turned out to be excellent!

With slightly sore legs from the 8 miles we hiked the day before; we woke up at our own pace, had breakfast and then headed out to Hyalite Canyon.  Taylor has wanted to take us out to this Bozeman gem for the last couple of years, but we have always had other plans.  The Hyalite Canyon trail takes you past a half dozen or so waterfalls until you reach Hyalite Lake at 5.5 miles.  It continues on another couple of miles and tops out at Hyalite Peak.  Our plan wasn't this ambitious though.

We luckily found a place in the parking lot (do all the people of Bozeman hike?) and headed out with nothing but our water bottles and cameras.  We bypassed the first falls (Grotto), since Taylor figured that this is where the majority of the people would be and headed on up to Arch Falls.  Arch Falls apparently has an arch that allows the water to flow through; unfortunately we were above the arch and couldn’t see it.

Looking down Arch Falls
The next set of falls, which were another ½ mile up the trail, are called Silken Skein Falls.  The side trail to these falls was a short steep grunt up several hundred feet before reaching this beautiful and secluded place.
Another waterfall across the canyon from Silken Skein Falls
After snapping a few photos, we both mentioned that our stomachs were growling.  Time to head back.  Along the way back down we stopped at Grotto Falls to witness another great sight of water falling down a cliff.  We headed back to Bozeman, where Taylor took me to Burger Bob's for great burgers and chocolate shakes!
All in all, a great weekend spent with my lovely daughter Taylor - can't wait to do it again!

This trip got me thinking of all the other backpacking trips we have taken over the years.  Here is a photo when she wasn't so independent.

A blast from the past! Our 2004 hiking trip to Coffee Cup Lake!


Anonymous said...

Great stuff. Good to see the whole family gets in on the adventures.

Anonymous said...

Loved these photos of you and Taylor. How special is it to be able to spend this kind of time with your kids, John? Great TR and photos!

Brian Head said...

I like your website. Thank you for great information. I will come back to your website again.

Brian Head

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A team of adventurers consisting of John, Tamara, Taylor, Dylan, and Shadow Fadgen