Henry Coe Park: Frog Pond and Upper Camp

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Trip Mileage: approximately 12 miles

We started out from Coe Park Headquarters, this was pretty much our first backpacking trip with real gear. We took the flat frog trail and made our way to Frog Pond by crossing the Little Fork of Coyote Creek. We had lunch and Frog Pond and 'threw our lines' at the pond for a while, no returns of fish for our efforts. The water was likely too cold yet for jigs and spinners, we would have been better off tossing small flys or bait. We got back on the Hobbs Road, and hiked up the hill towards Middle Ridge Trail. Then we began our steep descent towards the Middle Fork of Coyote Creek. I kept thinking of the pain this descent would become on our return trip. We got to Upper Camp and we tired, in hindsight we had packed way way too much crap! My pack must have weighed 30 lbs, but you can't learn without trying. We spent the long cold night at upper camp, freezing our balls off in the "30 degree" bags we had purchased, even though it couldn't have been under 45. I thought that the 30 degree rating had to do with comfort, but it seems more of a 'sleep-less survival' rating. We tried our luck fishing in the creek, although now I think it was not legal as trout season was closed during the time we were on this trip. We hiked out the next day with our heavy packs causing sore shoulders and backs even on this short ~12 miles round-trip journey.

Some things I learned from this trip:

  • Sleeping bag rating is not for comfort
  • 14 hours of darkness is a long time for wishing you were sleeping, bring a book to read
  • Cheap 'self-inflating' sleeping matt is way too heavy to be useful for hiking trips
  • 8 lb tent is great for car camping, or when you have 3+ people to share the load but not for solo carrying

    Last updated: 03/27/05
    Copyright 2005, Greg Miller