May 15, 2009 at 9:47 am #1236333
I got one of the Monday thru Wednesday slots early this week for the Backcountry area of the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge. The backcountry area is specifically called Charons Garden. It was very rainy, windy, and cloudy all day Monday and into Tuesday afternoon.
I arrived at the parking area around noon and headed up to Twin Rocks Mountain.
The trail was cut off by this guy, who I had about a half hour conversation with trying to convince him of my sincerity that I offered him no harm. Each step I would take off my protected highpoint he would either turn in my direction or even take a step towards me.
Once he was a safe enough distance I sprinted to a rock across the trail to another safe rock high enough to be protected.
After a quick scramble up the weather cleared a little while upon on top Twin Rocks.
After an hour or so up top I found a sheltered campsite among the calf high wet grass and buffalo sh*&.
Cooked dinner on my stove and promptly fell asleep when the sun set. Woke up late due to rain and the fly left open, wiped off my quilt and tent floor and fell right back to sleep.
In the AM followed the unnamed stream (river with all the rainfall) south down to Treasure Lake.
Had breakfast and then head back north from the Treasure Lake trail into the Boulder Fields.
The trail follows the drainage into Treasure lake back uphill slightly.
Back to the parking area again I hiked up Elk Mountain.
Temps hit about 90 around 4PM, got bored and forgot my book, pulled 2 ticks off of me, wussed out and headed home.May 15, 2009 at 10:23 am #1501491
@funnymoLocale: Sunshine State
How beautiful IS that place?!!
I haven't heard of it until now. Lucky you…..and who hasn't bailed before!!??
Great pics.May 15, 2009 at 11:25 am #1501507
Nice pics Chris. I still have yet to get up there. Missed a trip a couple months ago out there.May 16, 2009 at 11:12 am #1501655
Chris, thanks for the pics. I've been by the WMLR many times. But I've never made that hike. Now, I'll be waiting for the fall to come and have those trails on my list of places to explore.May 19, 2009 at 1:59 pm #1502215
@akajutLocale: Central Oklahoma
The Wichitas have some great rock gardens. I just wish the park was larger. You can't really get away from everyone else. Me and some friends did a day hike up to Twin Rocks (a.k.a. "The Crab Eyes"). There are some great views of the plains from on top.
There is also some rocks that have formed a cave by Elk Mountain. Trip Report for that scrambleMay 19, 2009 at 4:29 pm #1502232
@dondoLocale: Colorado Rockies
Wow, Chris! That is beautiful country. Thanks for sharing the photos. I can relate to your encounter with the bison because I had a similar situation with a moose. When I got back to town I told a friend that I was changing my trail name to "Dances with Moose". She replied that "Runs from Moose" would be more appropriate.May 22, 2009 at 11:52 am #1503027
@tomclarkLocale: East Coast
Chris, you go to lots of very cool places. Thanks for posting!
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