Yeti and I left early to do our Spanish Peaks loop backpack. Our first stop was the Coffee Pot for breakfast. They have delicious and filling breakfast sandwiches, made fresh. Just about 12 miles further to the turn off into Ted Turner’s land. One lone bison was eating grass by the roadside.
There were several horse campers at the trail head. The horses were grazing peacefully as we set off. For about the first 4 miles, the trail is fairly level with just small rolling ups and downs. It follows the South Fork of Spanish Creek to a junction. You can either take the Mirror Lake fork or the path to Spanish Lakes, which is what we did. At the junction, we bumped into Mike, a guy who was out with his son and the son’s friends. They had gotten separated as they hiked in the evening before: Mike camped at Mirror Lake and we surmised that the guys were camped just ahead over the creek crossing. Then we noticed a note made with sticks “Mike” pointing the way over…. They were indeed at the camp. We chatted a bit with them and headed off – uphill and steep-ish!
We took it slowly and stopped for lunch at trailside. Soon, the kids came gamboling up followed shortly by Mike, who stopped to get a load off and chatted with us for a bit. They were heading to Spanish Lakes also to fish.
Got to the lake about 3pm and found quite a few people. One group had a really nice site that was the nearest to the lake and they’d staked out the lake front there too. They didn’t seem too friendly and we didn’t want to horn in on their privacy. We searched around a bit – by the stream there was another set camp with two tents. We crossed the stream and almost immediately found a potential site. Yeti and I went looking a bit further on and we came upon some mules and a camp in the woods. We decided to just camp at the site by the stream.
After setting up camp, I went to take pictures of the lake, which is surrounded by high jagged peaks. A bit like Cirque of the Towers in that respect. We had not explored to find the other two lakes, one of which we think is higher up and the other behind a rock “hill” as you first approach the lake. I think the guys we met earlier went to the higher lake, because we did not see them. I sat by the water for a bit, then went back to camp. We cooked pretty early and soon headed off to our tents. Both of us read our e-books until we nodded off. Quiet night.