The Beaten Path - Thursday September 3, 2020

This day probably had the most amazing scenery. The trail continued to climb and passed by some of the most beautiful landscapes: Duggan Lake (with the stunning Impasse Falls), Twin Outlet Lake,  Dewey Lake (sparkling blue surrounded by craggy peaks), and Fossil Lake on the Beartooth Plateau….we were ooh-ing and ah-ing all day long! Duggan had a fantastic camp site right on top of the falls that was incredible.  Not many wildflowers left, but we did see Harebells, various berries (huckleberries, raspberries, currants and crow berries?), purple asters, pearly everlasting, elderberry, and Oregon grape. Jerry seemed to be our resident berry expert and she pointed out all the various berry bushes.

Dewey Lake had had a bear problem, but that was over two weeks prior. We had lunch there and no sign of a bear. In fact, I didn’t see any scat the entire trip.

We climb almost to 10,000 feet to the plateau and Fossil Lake – passing other hikers on the way. The Plateau offered yet another very different terrain – very windy up there and some flies. I really enjoyed walking the plateau and passing Fizzy Lake in the distance.

Though we’d planned to push on 10 miles to Russell Lake, we stopped short at charming Skull Lake, which we thought was Bald Knob. Grassy hills overlooking a smaller lake – absolutely wonderful. We managed to find flat spots and cooked dinner while watching a merganser swimming around and fish jumping out of the water. A wonderful camp and moonlight to boot. It was a cool evening, but never got too cold.

Barbara and I decided we’d leave camp early and try to get out by 12-1pm as we had the long shuttle to do before driving home. That was the plan. Great night with fab views and stars.