Vivian Lake Backpack

Posted: August 11, 2008 by jgrantmarshall in family, travel
Tags: , ,

I got back this afternoon from the backpack to Vivian Lake with Grant, my brother-in-law, Justin, and my nephew, Jacob.  I am a little sore between my shoulder blades but am otherwise feeling good and definitely refreshed.  It always is so rewarding to spend time with nature and family.  While on the trail, I kept a trip journal and I will share it with you below.

Trailhead on NF-23

8/8/08 – 1645 Hiked in from road NF-23; although we had planned to trailhead at NF-510.  Our online maps seemed to be a bit off, so we decided to follow the clearly marked signs to the Vivian Lake trailhead, provided by the forest service.  It was comforting to have signs vs. trusting maps that were already proving to be incorrect.  The bad news is that it added another half mile to our day (3 miles instead of 2.5).  Further bad news, for me, was Grant did not even make it .1 of a mile before his pack became too heavy for him to carry and I carried it the rest of the way for him.  I wore packs front and back.  I am very glad we only had to go 3 miles!  The trip was largely uneventful besides the constant, “Are we there yet?” and “I’m tired!”  The mosquitoes have been very annoying from the start and even the 17.5% DEET in my Jungle Juice doesn’t seem to deter them.  We have seen numerous patches of snow… in AUGUST!!!  We stopped for a lunch break at a little un-named lake with beautiful blue water.

Front & Back Packs

Front & Back Packs

Grant wasn’t too thrilled with the trail mix (doesn’t like raisins and it had a few raisins mixed in with a lot of chocolate chips), but it tasted really good to me.  We followed the lake South awhile before nearly due North along a cascading stram down to Vivian Lake.  Our campsite is a large flat area about 10′ above Vivian Lake and 100′ back from the water.  We have not seen a single other person, which I did not expect but am pleasantly surprised.  When arriving we setup camp and had another snack.  Grant and I had summer sausage and trail mix.  We then walked East and North up to Fall Creek to filter some water.  The water was so cold and fresh.  I am really glad that I bought the water filter (a Katadyn Hiker).  It is much easier and tastier than boiling or using tablets!  Back in camp, Grant fell off of a log he was balancing on (while running) and skinned up his arm and belly.  I made him some pink lemonade and all is well.  Also in camp, we found a Geocache that was hidden only about 10 feet from where we pitched our tents.  I found a snake about 2 feet in length and black with yellow-green stripe while searching for a good potty spot.  Justin and the boys are playing “Go Fish” card game in their tent right now.  I am enjoying a sunny spot on the shore of the lake while writing.

Vivian Lake

Vivian Lake

8/9/08 – 0715 Waking up and thinking about getting going.  Grant got cold in the night (about 3AM) and I showed him how to add more clothes and put on a beanie.  I slept all night with my beanie on, being the hairless wonder that I am.  I listened to the frogs as I tossed and turned.  I finally  hit some real sleep around 1AM.  Well, time to get up, eat, clean up and get ready for today’s hike down to the falls.

1430 Hiked to Fall Creek Falls (about 1 mile from camp) and then on to Diamond Falls (about 2+ miles).  We brought fanny packs, snacks and water but left backpacks at camp.  It was about 2 miles each way and nearly entirely downhill on the way there.  I stopped and got lots of pictures.

Fall Creek Falls

Fall Creek Falls

Grant got pretty tired but made it OK.  We made lunch upon our return.  Grant and I had trail mix, a hunk of papaya (candied) and summer sausage.  We’re all taking an afternoon nap right now and enjoying the sun’s warmth in our tents.  Camp is quiet, except for Justin or Jacob’s snoring.  🙂  I think I slept about an hour, but will probably stay in the tent and read “Ride the Dark Trail” by Louis L’Amour, when I’m done writing.  For now, I am glad the tent is warm, my pads (yes, plural) are comfy and Grant is sleeping peacefully.  (By the way, he went right out for the nap and also at bedtime last night.  Hiking is good for him!)  After the naps, we hiked cross country to the far North end of Vivian Lake by way of the main N-S trail.  High Cascades forests are much easier to bushwhack than Western Oregon forests!  We saw many frogs and I took quite a few pictures of Mt. Yoran.  On our way, we had stashed our water jugs so we could fill them up on our way back.  Filling up the bottles is kind of pleasurable because Fall Creek is so beautiful.  I even think it is beautiful after jumping in, with boots on, to save my bottle adapter piece.  I did end up losing both input and output covers for the pump.  DOH!

8/10/08 – 0800 I probably slept the best, in a tent, last night since when I was a kid and didn’t know any better.  It got colder last night and I finally appreciated my mummy bag and had it zipped up tight!  I dressed Grant up in as many layers as he would allow and he did fine…  Although, he did sit up in the middle of the night (again at about 3AM) and said he was looking at the reflection on the lake (it was absolutely pitch black).  OK… g’night.

Last Picture Before Heading Out

Last Picture Before Heading Out

We are getting dressed and taking baby wipe baths.  Thanks, Allie!  Next, we’ll eat some breakfast before packing up camp and hiting the trail.  It has been a great trip.

2230 – Back Home The return hike started out pretty tough.  Since I had Grant’s pack on my front on the way down this section and couldn’t see very well in front of me, I was a little surprised to see all of the rocks and roots in the path and realized I didn’t fall to my death down to Vivian Lake.  The trail was steep and tiring up to my little un-named lake.  We ate a light lunch and enjoyed the beauty of this lake.  I wouldn’t mind making this a destination next time, I liked it that much.  Plus, it would cut out that gnarly section of trail we had just hiked up.  Grant carried his pack the whole way this time, but was only carrying his clothes, his fanny pack, and his sleeping pad… but he made it and I was proud of him.  We stopped many times along the way to catch our breath and to sip water.  Close to the trailhead was the only place we found any ripe huckleberries.  We saw nobody at all until within 25 yards of the Jeep, where we found a fellow hiker going back for some huckleberries after making back to his car.  We talked with that guy’s wife at the trailhead and she said that they had been at Divide Lake.  I looked it up at home in Sullivan’s book and it looks like a nice hike, although it is 4 miles each way, instead of 3.  Evidently, you can hike .8 miles from Divide Lake up to a ridge where you can literally stand on a divide between East and West Oregon and the views include both directions.  Maybe next year!

  1. Grandma Robinson says:

    Jacob doesn’t snore anymore since her surgery…. Must have been Justin!

  2. Grandma Robinson says:

    Whoops, Jacob would be a “he!”

  3. Pretty sure it was both of them, most of the time, but Justin was a bunch louder! By the 2nd night, I don’t think I heard either of them, though!

  4. Donna says:

    Really awesome, I am glad Barb shared this. It brings back good memories of some hikes I took. It it great that you are starting such nice events with your son other than TV and city slicker things. Sounds like except for the bugs, it was really nice.


  5. Hey, Donna, thanks for taking the time to leave a comment! It was a great trip and I’m pretty sure everyone had as good of a time as I did. Bugs (and a little blood loss) were a small price to pay for the fun we had and the beauty we experienced!

  6. […] I had first heard of Divide Lake from another hiker on the trail when we were coming back from Vivian Lake (our backpacking trip last year). As the days got closer, Grant and I got more excited until the day finally came and I was up […]

  7. Your blog is so informative … ..I just bookmarked you….keep up the good work!!!!

    Hey, I found your blog in a new directory of blogs. I dont know how your blog came up, must have been a typo, anyway cool blog, I bookmarked you. 🙂

    Robert Shumake

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s