We had an adventure of a week! Our weekdays were mostly quiet and sunny, but I had grand plans for the weekend. I wanted to get out for at least one backpacking trip this spring, and with the summer solstice fast approaching, this weekend was it. During the week, our evenings were spent sorting through our gear and getting everything packed an ready for a early start on Saturday. For the first trip of the year, especially with so much snow lingering in the mountains, we decided to stick to a familiar lowland area - Blanchard Mountain. We've hiked the trail to Lily & Lizard Lakes twice, and knew it was a placed we wanted to camp.
We had a lovely time Saturday, getting an early start so we had plenty plenty of time to relax and explore. We spent the evening sharing a campfire with a couple and solo hiker camping near us at Lizard Lake, roasting hot dogs and marshmallows and swapping stories. The excitement didn't start until late that night. Around midnight, we woke to shouting and flashlights. Apparently the solo hiker we'd shared a fire with had cut his hand badly and was preparing to hike back out to the trailhead to meet an ambulance. By the time Andy and I were awake enough to figure out what was going on, he was already on his way to the trailhead, accompanied by two hikers who'd recently arrived. The next morning, we woke to find he'd left behind all his gear, giving his contact info to a couple camped near us. He'd brought a huge amount of gear with him, so we offered to help by packing out what we could, but even between the four of us we weren't able to fit everything! Luckily on our short hike back to our cars, we ran into the solo hiker's dad - I recognized his son's dog who he'd brought along with him. Leave No Trace is important, so even though it had been an emergency and we'd packed out everything we could, it made me feel much better to know nothing would be left behind.
After a sleepless night, and such a scary reminder of how much more serious an injury can be when hiking, I was glad to get home early Sunday for a much needed nap!