Monday, March 16, 2015

McClure Trail, Lassen National Forest

A simple overnight in Lassen National Forest: McClure trail from the High Trestle trailhead, then to the north fork of Antelope Creek. High 70, low 40. 2000 feet above sea level.

Everybody was set up and loafing or hiking/exploring by 1:30pm. I found a short but pleasant place to hang my backpacking hammock between two trees, probably just properly far enough from the North Fork Antelope Creek in the green, but dryish Lassen National Forest.

The trip down to our camping spot is down from the trailhead to McClure Place, a long defunct farm still decorated with one rusting horse drawn gadget. Then into the abyss, a 200ft descent down to Antelope Creek, across a series of benches separated by steep, short descents. Total elevation lost about 800 feet over 3 miles.

We had a variety of packs and shelters in our group. Small conventional one man tents, a single wall tent, another hammock(!). A Gossamer Gear pack, several generic REI packs. Our hammock setups generated interest (2 hammockers in a group generate more than twice the interest as one.)

The other hammocker stopped at the second to the last bench, I continued on, hoping for an equally nice pair of trees.

We were a little bit downstream of the camping spot from a few years ago. More open, less poison oak to avoid. I was still on a slope. I'm always on a slope.

The sixth person is taking the picture
This was a Meetup organized trip, originally full up at 12, the final body count was 6. The weather looked and felt like rain, and there were a few tiny droplets as we were setting up. Mid 60s and humid (for Northern California). No real rain developed.

The hike out was all uphill but not too bad because there was a nice breeze blowing through the canyon, and the sun was not too high in the sky. The drive home was 3 hours.

When I got home I decided to make backpacker soup and wash all my gear in a solution of Tecnu in a big tub. If I show poison oak by Thursday, then I will wash my down quilts and my hammock.

However, I don't want to wash them unless I absolutely have to. The contamination will come from the soles of my shoes and the tips of the poles as there was some poison oak on as well as beside the trail.

1 comment:

  1. Piglet! I fat fingered and deleted your lovely comment! But my email client saved it. Whew!
    Piglet has left a new comment on your post "McClure Trail, Lassen National Forest":

    " I hate when people read blogs and don't comment, so here I am! Thanks for the insight on a Lassen backpacking trail. I am hoping to take my 7 y/o son backpacking this summer, and we have campsite reservations at Lassen, so maybe we can get away from the water spigots and barking dogs and head out to a more serene location, at least for a night :) "