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pnw_transplant
PNW Transplant



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PostTue Sep 08, 2020 8:22 am 
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Alright Randito no need to be a dick about it. I completely get that beautiful places are going to be crowded over LDW (I've been backpacking and hiking for 20 years). My point was more that it was absolutely, ridiculously crowded and there seems to be A LOT more people out because of COVID leading to way more crowding than usual.
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JonnyQuest
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PostTue Sep 08, 2020 9:09 am 
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On Sunday there were 20+ cars at the Little Q trailhead.  I've probably hiked the Little Q approach to Mt. T 15 times and I'm not sure I've ever seen over 10 other vehicles at the Trailhead.  And we usually find maybe 3 or 4 at most.
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Hutch
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PostTue Sep 08, 2020 11:04 am 
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I'd imagine that having funding and staff to do enforcement is a hurdle, but it feels like this is one of those spots that should have a permit system to preserve flora/fauna like the Enchantments. It's been overcrowded on weekends for years; adding COVID, social media, general increase in hiking population = bad news. Crowds are one thing on popular dayhikes, but when ~100+ people a night are setting up tents and pooping without digging holes every weekend, it's more than just an aesthetic problem.

One of those gorgeous places that is on my "only visit on weekdays" list.
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fyodorova
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PostTue Sep 08, 2020 12:30 pm 
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This area has always been crowded but it is more so this summer. Robin and Tuck Lakes is certainly a "weekday-only" destination.

It's still possible to find solitude up the Cle Elum River road. A few weeks ago, we parked alongside the road where the line of cars ended 1/3 of a mile from the Cathedral Pass trailhead. We hiked up to Peggy's Pond, passing a few groups of climbers on the way. We camped all alone at Circle Lake. You never would have guessed there were hundreds of cars at the trailhead. You just have to know where to avoid.

The ranger on duty resupplying permits said, "It's been like this every day since July."
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pushkarwallah
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PostWed Sep 09, 2020 10:17 am 
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My lady friend had the pleasure of telling the 2 tent owners that camped on the shore of Peggy's to "move it".

Crazy that anyone would even bother to put a tent there, especially since there were spots throughout the basin available.
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Randito
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PostWed Sep 09, 2020 10:58 am 
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The last time I was up at Robin Lakes there were about 20 parties camped along the lake shores and along the stream between the two lakes when I arrived around 2PM -- there were a couple of rangers talking to the dingbat with his tent two feet from the shore of the lower Robin Lake.

I had a couple of Nalageen Canteens in my pack in addition to my regular water bottles and after loading up with water from the upper lake,  I walked a little farther and over small rise to an exisiting dry campsite with a great view of Mt Daniel and nobody else in sight.
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neek
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PostWed Sep 09, 2020 11:07 am 
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Took the kid there a few Wednesdays ago and there were only a couple other tents, near the outlet of the upper lake.  Like Randito, camped high and dry, but with a nearby puddle for water.  Tons of people coming in when we left on Friday, with cars lined up way down the road.  I imagine the other famous lake out that way has been a mess on weekends as well.
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Downhill
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PostWed Sep 09, 2020 5:52 pm 
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olderthanIusedtobe wrote:
Sigh.  It seems like a lot of places are pretty much ruined now.  At least I got to visit some of them while they were still okay.

Of the overnight backcountry trips I have made this summer, I have shared a destination with another (one) party just once - all other destinations I have had totally to myself.  Several times I have not seen another person car-to-car.  Solitude is important to me, although I don't mind sharing a location with a nice party or two.  I plan my trips for locations, routes, and days that give me the greatest probability of avoiding crowds.

It's harder to do, especially if you are new to the region, but some planning and thought can get you to amazing places where not only do you have solitude, it can be difficult to even find traces of prior travelers.

Like Yogi Berra said, "no one goes there anymore, it's too crowded"
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Secret Agent Man
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PostWed Sep 09, 2020 11:28 pm 
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If you’re going to a place and finding it to be crowded, remember that you are part of the crowd too.
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Chief Joseph
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PostThu Sep 10, 2020 8:52 am 
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Secret Agent Man wrote:
If you’re going to a place and finding it to be crowded, remember that you are part of the crowd too.

Yogi?

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Go placidly amid the noise and waste, and remember what comfort there may be in owning a piece thereof.
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rbuzby
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PostThu Sep 10, 2020 9:37 am 
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Chief Joseph wrote:
Yogi?


"Nobody goes there anymore, it's too crowded."
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pula58
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PostThu Sep 10, 2020 10:22 am 
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For labor day I have found that one must pick oddball/remote places to avoid the crowds. Even before covid this was true. Sadly, going to Tuck and Robin on a 3-day holiday weekend is almost guaranteed to be a major bummer in every way. We have to work a little harder, hike a little farther, and possibly (probably) have to go off trail to have non-crowded experiences.
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Foist
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PostThu Sep 10, 2020 1:52 pm 
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Did you go beyond/above Robin Lakes?  Or did you just find no camping right around Robin Lakes themselves, and then turned around and camped back down in the forest?  Don't think I would ever venture up that way on a weekend anyway, but just curious how far the mobs have extended.
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water
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PostSun Sep 13, 2020 1:13 am 
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one small caveat I can offer with the 'unprecedented' use I've seen is that going past places or arriving at trailheads - yes things are busier. But for myself and other I know what would have been a 1 or 2 vehicle trip is now 2, 3, 4, 5 vehicles for the same sized party due to people driving separate.

that massive 'line' of cars at previously less busy trailheads has not always translated to as equal 'crowding' on the trails as I'd have expected given the vehicle traffic. Just seeing the vehicle overflow from places can be demoralizing and make it seem like there are radically more people than usual when in fact it may be a modest uptick (at some places).

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feel free to feel free
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Dr. T
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PostSun Sep 13, 2020 8:53 am 
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Also early season is a great choice.  Not a soul up there.

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