It was the back-packing trip to beat all, partly because it was our first one and partly because it was the most difficult, the most work, and where the weather gods seemed to be trying to drive us out. But we endured for eight days.
But first the reason we started back-packing in the first place. Sophia and I drove north on
California Route 5 for a little vacation, probably in the late eighties in July. We didn't know where we were going and stopped the first afternoon at Castle Crags State Park near Dunsmuir. We stayed in the Castle Crag's campsite there and next day proceeded up to Yreka near the Oregon border, and stopped at a National Forest Service office, to ask them what was to do around. They sent us over to Marble Mountains Wilderness in Klamath National Forest. We drove southwest on highway 3 to Fort Jones, and then stopped in a ranger station for a fire permit and conditions. Then we proceeded on north to road 96 and the Klamath River. From there we had to climb five-thousand feet probably, on rattle rough washboard dirt and gravel roads. We arrived at the trailhead, which was a blacktop parking lot about the size of a football field surrounded by giant trees. There were campsites there and was-where trails began heading in various directions.
We decided right then on arrival that we were going to hike out to Little Elk Lake and stay the night. Sofia had one back-pack, I had an old tent, we had some sleeping bags and so we threw some stuff together and took off. We started out about five in the evening and we had no idea what we were getting into.
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