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Forum Index -> Trip Reports -> South on PCT from White Pass to Hell Lake, Twin Peaks Trail
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kbatku
Questionable hiker



Joined: 17 Sep 2007
Posts: 2765 | TRs | Pics
Location: Yaquima
Post Sun Jul 11, 2010 10:28 pm    South on PCT from White Pass to Hell Lake, Twin Peaks Trail
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This is another in a series of brief trail reports - this one without pics because I forgot my camera. frown.gif

Sean, Selina and I set off after watching the World Cup to hike in to Hell Lake and catch some fish.  Made it to the TH about 4, and to the lake about 5:45.  A scattering of smallish down trees littered the switchbacks, but nothing you couldn't walk over/around.

After last weeks abortive hike north, I was interested in what effect the weeks hot weather had on the snow pack.

Around Gillette Lake the snow started to get deep & patchy, but with enough openings to be able to follow the trail more or less. Selina fell in once crossing a snow bridge, but only got her feet wet. Lots of snow and water on the trail, and the snow was pretty mooshy through and through.

It looked on the way up like the Twin Peaks trail was pretty melted out, with the serious snow only beginning once it dropped into the trees near the PCT.  That is a pretty neat hike, from Round Mountain to the PCT, then down to White Pass, BTW. It's about 9 miles & with two cars a neat day hike.

Anyway, Hell Lake used to be a great spot to fish, but last year a bunch of yahoos (I assume) came through and caught & ate all the fish. We came shortly after they left last year, fish skeletons every where & trash, dart gun darts etc... so I feel safe in calling them yahoos. moon.gif

Anyway, we tried in vain to catch a fish & I can be pretty safe in saying it's fished out. Too bad because it used to be a great spot for some really nice cutthroats.

While I waded, I saw shoals of a strange biomass, which looked like tiny water fleas, or something.  I'm betting that they were REALLY juvenile mosquito larvae, and there were MILLIONS of them. Millions.

Word to the wise: Don't go to Hell Lake in a couple of weeks. Really. eek.gif

Anyway, the weather started to roll in, temps dropped and we skedaddled out of there.  No reason to go back for a while, since the fish are gone and a serious hatch of mosquitoes is in the offing. We were down off the mountain at 8:30 and home before 10:00.

Without the fish to eat the mosquitoes, that area is going to get hammered hard. frown.gif
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Jeff
Ramen Elitist



Joined: 18 Aug 2008
Posts: 2257 | TRs | Pics
Location: Someone get me out of Everett, WA
Post Sun Jul 11, 2010 10:32 pm   
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Translation: fantastic fishing at Hell Lake
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kbatku
Questionable hiker



Joined: 17 Sep 2007
Posts: 2765 | TRs | Pics
Location: Yaquima
Post Sun Jul 11, 2010 10:48 pm    LOL!!
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TwoFortyJeff wrote:
Translation: fantastic fishing at Hell Lake

Sorry, but no.  smile.gif  If that were the case, I wouldn't mention it at all and would steer everyone to Gillette Lake (which may or may not have fish in it, I really don't know).

Nice guess though - it used to have fantastic fishing, and may again in four or five years. It certainly has enough food to support a good population of fish. The first time we fished there we caught and released about two dozen nice cuts in two hours, which we thought was pretty good. wink.gif
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