Elk Meadows and I are best friends.
We see each other a few times a year, we catch up, and we appreciate each others quiet company. We take a few hours to reconnect, and I head back to my world and Elk Meadows resumes its quiet contentment on the side of a beautiful mountain. The rivers run, the snow deepens, and everything is right.
I don’t often camp out at Elk Meadows in the winter – I’d love to, don’t get me wrong, but unfortunately the trailhead is snowed in this time of year, and the only parking area nearby is day-use only… and it’s well frequented enough that I worry about getting towed instead of just ticketed. Day trips are the name of the game in the winter.
Which is a bit of a bummer… but it means that I don’t stay overnight, and drive home… which also means that I can get dinners on the drive back. At… ohh, say the Timberline Lodge, as a specific example relevant to tonight’s story.
I hiked Elk Meadows. And then had dinner at the Timberline Lodge.
That’s basically it. The rest, as they say, are just details.
One interesting detail, though… I ran into a guy backpacking! Right on the river… definitely an interesting spot, but it was neat to run into someone else snow camping. Not something I see particularly often, which made it a bit memorable.