Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Sagehen Creek Trail: Tahoe National Forest, Truckee area

7 miles north on highway 89 from the I-80/89 interchange is a little bridge-let over Sagehen Creek and a parking lot (unsigned) on the right after the bridge.

It is an easy and pleasant 2.5 miles (or so I've been told) to the meadow by Stampede Reservoir. It took me 2 hours 15 minute round trip so I think that's about right.

Flowers. Lots of flowers.

People, lots of people on a weekday morning. All looking for the camas lily, I suppose.
The Famous Lily

Whole field of 'em

I have had trouble finding a good flower book. I had a useful conversation with the only other single hiker I met, who was more than glad to whip out 2 books from her knapsack and give the plus and minus for each. We even looked up flowers together. I took photos of the covers so I can look for them later.

On to the flowers! (and a few scenic shots)

One of four kinds of flowering shrubs I saw

Squaw Carpet

Stampede Reservoir

Pretty sure this is yarrow

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Bassi Falls, Crystal Basin Recreation Area, Eldorado Nat'l Forest

The falls are roaring today, but I'd bet they were even rowdier a few weeks ago.

This is my second trip to these 109 foot falls; last time was several years ago with my (then boyfriend now) husband and our dog. It was later in the year and it was possible to get closer to the falls that time of year than I did today.

Today I played it safe and only walked through water less than 1" deep.

Bassi Falls are a longish drive and a shortish hike away from the Sacramento, CA area: US 50 past Pollock Pines, then Icehouse Road, then the forest access road about 16 miles further, across from Silver something group camp. The 1.7 mile forest access road is - interesting - in a Toyota Prius, but perfectly doable.

I had the place to myself today, seeing only one other car as I was leaving the access road.

The hike from the trailhead is really easy, fairly flat, then gently down hill.

After the shady pine section, wander across some granite slabs with interesting water-erosion patterns on them.

There are random trail ducts but I'd rely more on distinctive trees and a good sense of direction when finding your way back from the falls.

Apparently, there are some other ways to get to the falls, as this sign indicates.

Youtube video here (short and sweet)