Campsite all cleaned up at Chamberlain Airstrip. We’re ready to go. 

No wrong direction this time; we’re headed straight to Red Top Meadows. 

We came down here the prior day to get water. Now we’re going to cross on those convenient logs to the left. 

The moon is still out! 

No hiding behind ridges from the sun this morning. 

It’s break time, Ambrose! Have a seat. 

Chamberlain Creek below the trail. 

It seems like we reached this stream crossing in record time. 

Sure, I can walk across logs. Just not these logs. 

Ambrose walking across logs with my hand trying to cut out the sun glare. To be fair, there’s no sun glare in the photo, just a chunk of my hand. 

Onwards to the meadow. 

I could totally cross on this log. Okay, it’s a little narrow, I’ll just do a sit and scoot. 

Nope. I tore my pants wide open at the crotch and bailed about halfway through as Ambrose watched (graciously not laughing). I took my boots off while on the log and then let myself down into the thigh deep water. 

We stopped here for a break. I sewed up my pants and lost Ambrose’s sewing needle, but, by some miracle of sunlight, I managed to find it just after I gave up on looking. 

One of those notches on the horizon is our route up to Fish Lake. 

Gotta follow this sign. 

But maybe someday we’ll go explore what lies beyond our turn off in the rest of Red Top Meadows. 

Going up. 

Just enough shade on the trail for lunch here. 

A lunch view overlooking Fish Creek. 

The light triangle near the middle of the frame is Sheepeater Mountain, and the tiny dot on top of it is the lookout. 

Snake carcass! 

That’s enough shade to take a break in, especially in the early afternoon when shade is scant. 

The trail seemed greener this year. That might have been because we were traveling in July instead of August, or because this year was a heavy rain/snow year. Or both. 

What a lot of shade, perfect for a break. The longer you’ve been backpacking, the more dirt looks like a comfortable seat. 

Oh, oh, we’re almost at the Fish Creek crossing. 

No fish, but I did find a frog in the creek. 

Ambrose about to cross Fish Creek. He did see some fish in it while getting water for our last push up to Sheepeater Lake. 

Fish Lake!

Break time. This shade had the bonus of some logs on the side of the trail that were perfect for putting my feet up. 

We ran into a group of three people and a dog after the break and before crossing the outlet. They were from Utah and hiking the  opposite direction. It was a surprise to find people on the trail. 

We made it to Sheepeater Lake – and before dinner! 

And this year, instead of wandering around lost in bogs, crossing logs, I followed my instincts and turned away from the lake on what looked like a path. There, I found an old fire ring, proof that others had used the spot for camping. 

Dragonflies at the lake. 

Ambrose filtering water at Sheepeater Lake. 

Patches of snow lingered around the rim of the ridge. 

Ambrose has discovered an incredible tool for getting a flat spot for our stove – a problem that has vexed us both for years. He took the top from our pot, which rarely gets used, flipped it upside down and set the stove on it. Genius! 

Not a bad pitch for the space constraints. I did have to clear out a lot of pine cones from beneath the space, but it worked out well. We felt reasonably secure, even though we could hear wolves howling across the lake. 

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