Last year, I planned on doing my solo hike in the Boise National Forest, on a trail that my husband and I had not hiked before, although we had hiked a good portion of the trail from another direction. I gave myself three days and two nights and allowed for an option to summit Sheep Mountain.
Then the fires got really bad. The area where I planned to hike was closed as the Elk Complex fire threatened it, and we rearranged my hike for a Stump Lake itinerary. I was happy to do the solo hike, and even happier to write up the experience in a book for my mom.
But I still wanted to see if I could summit Sheep Mountain, and if the trail that I thought I would use was passable and accessible as it appeared to be on the map. And this weekend, my husband and I are going to do it. Well. We’re going to try to do it.
It won’t be a backpacking trip, not quite, but a car camping trip. For us, car camping means we bring the big heavy tent, the large camping stove and as much whatever as we can fit in the car in addition to day hiking packs. The plan is to drive out on Friday night, and then get up early for a day hike towards Sheep Mountain on Saturday with a return drive on Sunday morning.
I can’t wait 🙂
I reviewed the route online, and, of the dozen stream crossings I counted on the map, I found two bridges, which is a bonus. Plus there’s always the chance that the streams on the map have dried up or changed course. But the route seemed longer than I thought it was when I tried to trace the trail. That might have something to do with zoom factor, but I’m going to try and prepare myself for the possibility that we won’t make it all the way to the summit in the day that we have.
Also, Ambrose thinks that there’s a possibility for snow. Not that it will snow necessarily, but that there will be unmelted snow lingering on the trail, especially towards the summit of the mountain. While that still seems foreign to me after growing up in Illinois where snow in May would be extraordinarily strange, I know that he’s right.
Between snow and a time limit, I know we might not make it. But I also know that there’s a chance that we can.
Next week, pictures and the verdict!