Since I worked all last weekend, I had last Monday off. My plans were grand… tell Madre to call in sick to work and have our annual Bear Lake trip where we sit and read and then bike whilst eating 8 bajillion gnats. Simple days… kind of like Andy Griffith in Mayberry except without Aunt Bea… or Opie… or pie… but in color. I had also decided I wanted to do a short hike up into this lake I’d never been to called Bloomington Lake, which I was sure would take a total of 11 minutes… TOPS! Oh plans… I envy you.
What ended up happening? We got to Bear Lake, and were supposed to drive a measley 11 miles a couple of towns over to Bloomington where we’d be able to access the road that took us up the canyon. Two miles into the drive to Bloomington, we hit a traffic jam… and a traffic jam in the middle of a 2-lane road is the most frustrating kind. We were totally stopped with a line of cars in front of us for miles. I didn’t know what was going on down the road, but it seemed like we might be there all day, and so we sat in the line for 5 minutes, got all antsy, and decided to turn around and change up the plans a bit. Our new plan was to drive around the lake to the state park we usually sat in to read. No biggie… I can hike later. Only, we somehow missed the turn to go around the lake and ended up on our way to Kemmerer, Wyoming… let’s face it… not even the people who live in Kemmerer want to visit! No offence… I’m sure your town is lovely.
Forty minutes later, I got out the rusty GPS majigger to see if we could find a shortcut to get back to the park, and that’s when we ended up here…
Miles into a bumpy dirt road that the GPS told me to turn down but then couldn’t for the life of me make up her mind where I should go on this dirt road. Freda, the GPS kept freaking out, telling us to turn where there were no roads to turn on… one time it told me we should turn into a pond, and I said to myself… self… if all of your GPS friends drove into a pond, would you!? Only if said pond had a treasure chest of chocolate cake at the bottom!
When we finally realized that this “shortcut” was no shortcut at all, we did an 85-point turn in a truck on a 2×5 dirt road and decided to head back to the highway. Stupid shortcuts. We then went back the way we came… back to sitting in the traffic jam which we learned 10 minutes later was road construction crews re-paving the road… and if we’d only waited 10 minutes the first time around we wouldn’t have wasted 4 hours of our day. Hurry up and be patient! My motto needs some work.
We did finally make it to Bloomington and the canyon, which was another bumpy dirt road that seemed neverending. I had my dread hat on and was sure we’d get a flat tire and then be stuck up here in the middle of nowhere with no cell reception and 2 Lifesaver mints, and the newspaper heading would say something about Lifesaver Mints Were No Lifesavers. A good half hour later, we made it to the trailhead parking lot, which I swear I could have found if I’d just sniffed my way up there… holy nasty-smelling outhouses, batwoman! Them babies were ripe for picking.
The hike up to the lake was 1.2 miles round trip, but when you dislike hiking and are a klutz, it was more like 52 miles all uphill both ways in near 100-degree heat. I had a walking stick and maneuvered rocky terrain like I was a 105-year-old on a Jazzy scooter. Oh laws… OH LAWS! I made it without injury… and saw some beautiful scenery at the end. I’ll call that good. Next hike will be flat and paved in a car. Mark my words!
Notice the snow!