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Topics - Big Steve

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Eastern Sierra Forum / August 27 through Sept 2 trip
« on: August 22, 2017, 05:41:01 PM »
I'm getting all my gear ready to load up and head for Rock Creek on Saturday. Actually spending the night Saturday in Bishop then heading to Big Meadow Sunday morning. I have never looked so forward to a trip as I am to this one. My sister's driving down from Utah, her best friend is driving down from Portland towing her 30 foot 5th wheel, and one of my best friends is driving down from Denver. I feel guilty because all I have to do is drive up from Riverside. Anyone else going to be in the canyon next week? I'll have cold beer if you stop by! :camping:

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Eastern Sierra Forum / Parking in the campgrounds
« on: March 02, 2017, 05:03:01 PM »
After not being able to make my annual pilgrimage to Rock Creek last year, we have our plans ready for our trip this year in late August. I'm coming up from Riverside, my sister is coming down from Salt Lake City, and her best friend is driving down from Portland with her 5th wheel (no tent this year - yay!) But we'll obviously have three vehicles plus the 5th wheel. As I recall, you're normally allowed two vehicles per site, but it seems I remember a notice that if you have a third car, you can pay an extra fee to park in the site. Am I hallucinating, or does that sound right? At least we're now past the threshold to use a Golden Adventure pass  (probably the only benefit to becoming a "senior citizen) We may end up having to get two sites, one just for parking. Our vehicles aren't small (an F250 diesel, a Suburban, and a minivan)

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Eastern Sierra Forum / Trip report 8/30-9/4
« on: September 05, 2015, 10:50:56 PM »
I got home this afternoon from the annual trip to Rock Creek that my Sister and I have made into a family tradition. Her family doesn't care to camp and neither does mine, so for the last eight years we have gone just the two of us, always the week before Labor Day. The crowds are gone, there's nary a bug to be seen, and the weather isn't hot, just pleasant. I live in Riverside, and she just moved a couple of months ago to Spanish Fork, Utah. But she wasn't about to let a 570 mile drive prevent her from her annual visit to The Creek. So we met in Bishop and spent the night at the Best Western Bishop Lodge and had Mexican food at La Casita as usual. I was real worried as I drove up 395, the smoke from the fires was very heavy and Bishop was enveloped in an orange, ashy haze. We got up Sunday morning and it wasn't as bad, but still oppressive. But we'd come so far we had to press on and take our chances, so0 we left Bishop at about 8:30 and headed for the hills. We have found that the best chance to get a prime spot occurs when we get to the campground around 9:00 or 9:30 on Sunday morning. years of trial and error have led to this finding. We prefer to stay in Big Meadow because it has only 11 sites and is very peaceful and quiet, so that's where we stay every year. We prefer campsite #8 because it's at the end of the camp road so there's not much traffic, it's a real big site with room for our 13 X 9 tent, and you can step out of the tent, take 3 steps, and be in the creek. It gets morning sun and afternoon shade, so my sis prays for it every year. We had #8 last year and the year before and guess what? It was available when we arrived, so we snagged it three years in a row! About half the campsites were occupied, but by Tuesday morning we had the entire campground to ourselves. We were the only people in the whole place! The campground hosts, Robert and Cathy Spencer (super great people by the way) were pretty surprised that there was no one else there, but we all agreed that it would fill up during the week leading up to Labor Day. They recognized us from years past, which is kind of cool. We had the run of the place from Tuesday morning until Thursday afternoon. It was very surreal. On Tuesday night just as we were finishing up eating dinner we received a visit from Mrs Yogi and her little BooBoo. She was just about to climb into the bed of my truck when I gave her a blast from the air horn that I had brought specifically for that purpose. That got her off my truck and she and BooBoo disappeared into the bushes by campsite #7. About 20 seconds later she came crashing through the bushes with her mouth wide open looking somewhat displeased. Another blast from the air horn convinced her that she might be better served looking elsewhere and that was the last we saw of her. I got a picture of her, but it's hard to take a good picture when your heart rate is about 200 beats per minutes and you're trying not to drop the air horn.
  Stephanie and I were first brought to Rock Creek in probably 1957 or '58, I have pictures of myself in diapers at Iris Meadow. Our Dad, who passed in 1997 loved The Creek, and wanted to retire to Bishop so he could be close to his beloved Sierras. Sadly, he never made it, so we call this our Mom and Dad Memorial Camping Trip, because Mom (who we also lost in '97) Truly loved the outdoors and took us camping at least two weeks ever year growing up. We know they were both smiling down on us as we carry forward their love of nature. It's funny how surprised people are when  we tell them we are brother and sister and that we do this together every year. I consider my sis to be my best friend and I treasure the chance to spend a week with her every year. Today a new arrival and I were talking and she asked me how long we had been married. I said "well she's been married 41 years and I've been married for 30". She looked at me like I had two heads until I explained that we are brother and sister.
  The weather was perfect all week, but as the week went on it started to get rather brisk at night. When we woke up at 7:00 this morning it was 35 degrees, We saw highs early in the week in the mid to upper 70's but Friday the high was 63. By last night the campground was completely full. They are still stocking the creek, in talking to the guy with the scoop, he tells me they are stocking up to five pounders since the season is drawing to a close. I didn't see for myself, but a guy who had been there for a few days before we arrived said that someone caught a four and a half pounder on Saturday. I did watch a guy catch one that I would estimate at about two+ pounds right at our campsite (did I mention that #8 is also where they dump in the stockers?) They stock on Tuesday and we were watching them swim around the rest of the week (no campers = no fishermen)
  In my pictures You can see Mrs Yogi just after climbing down from my truck, and little BooBoo is at the far left.  I took Stephanie up to Mosquito Flat, because in all these years she had never been up there. She was overwhelmed with the beauty and the large number of people heading off to the back country. I would love to take her up to LLV, which I hiked to several years ago, but the bones don't appreciate hiking like they used to, so she has my pictures to look at.You had to wait for a pilot car whether going up or down, but in 4 different excursions, the longest we had to wait was 5 minutes, so I wouldn't even consider the road construction to be an issue. You're at Rock Creek, what's the hurry? They have built a very attractive natural stone retaining wall just above the first bridge, it looks real nice. And the new road is smoother than a baby's butt.
  I've been back for about 6 hours and am already pining for my trip next year. But I have to admit it's kind of nice not to be freezing cold and to have hot water come out of the faucet instead of a pail over the campfire! If anyone is going next year around this time, just remember to save us #8!

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Eastern Sierra Trip Reports / Our trip 8/24 - 8/30
« on: September 04, 2014, 05:43:18 PM »
My sister and I had a great week at the creek last week, we camped at Big Meadow from Sunday through Saturday. We have found that arriving Sunday morning around 9:00 is perfect for getting a good campsite. We drove up from Riverside on Saturday and spent the night at the Best Western Bishop Lodge, which was very nice and quiet. Once we arrived at Big Meadow, we were delighted to find that campsite #8 was available (we had it last year too). It's a nice big site with room for our 13 X 9 foot tent, and gets great morning sun. Once the sun appears over the eastern mountain ridge the temperature inside the tent goes up 20 degrees. That's when I crawl out of my sleeping bag. From Sunday until Thursday afternoon, there were only three campsites occupied, so we had the campground mostly to ourselves. By Friday morning it was full with all the Labor Day campers. The weather was beautiful the whole week the warmest we saw was 78 and one night it dropped down to 41, and we got no rain. The creek was pretty low, but was flowing nicely. Campsite #8 is right on the creek, I could take 4 steps out of my tent and get my feet wet. I didn't do any fishing but the creek is stocked right there at our campsite and they put in two scoopfuls on Tuesday. All told I saw probably 10 or 12 fish get caught right there by the end of the week. We went up to the lodge on Thursday to take showers (whether we needed them or not) and the road construction caused about a 10 minute delay. They take groups of cars up with a pilot car, but it wasn't bad. The first bridge was having new utility cables installed, so it was extremely narrow (only one lane) and there was a guy with a stop/go sign directing traffic one at a time.
  It was just a nice peaceful, relaxing week, I can't think of any place I'd rather be. That's why my sister and I come back year after year. Our parents (now both gone) started bringing us to Rock Creek in 1958, so we have very fond memories. Her family doesn't care to camp, nor does my family, so we have an annual brother/sister tradition of our own that we've followed for about 8 years now. People were shocked to see that a brother and sister of our age (I'm 58, she's 60) still getting along so well and tent camping. Ever since I invested in a Teton Sports XXL cot, I sleep better at the creek than I do at home! Now I have to endure another year's wait until it's time to go again! Or I may try to make it to the next "club meeting" in July.

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Eastern Sierra Trip Reports / 8/25 through 8/31
« on: September 04, 2013, 09:32:39 AM »
  We spent last week at campsite #8 in Big Meadow. We had always coveted this site since it's right on the creek, and is a fairly large site. We have a 13 X 9 foot tent so we need the space. We felt real blessed when we saw that it was open. We drive up to Bishop from Riverside on Saturday and stay at the Vagabond Inn every year, and go to dinner at La Casita Mexican restaurant (good margaritas and Super Burrito!). Then we get up early on Sunday, stop at Schat's for Sheepherder bread, and then head up the hill. We got to Big Meadow about 9:00 AM, and got the site we wanted. We've experimented with different arrival days and times and have found that early Sunday works best.
  The weather was spectacular all week, there was about a 5 minute slight rain shower on  saw was 76 degrees, and one night it dipped to 39. But the average low was about 43. The creek was as low as I've seen it, but it was stocked on both Monday and Tuesday. A lot of fish were pulled out the rest of the week. I didn't fish this year, for several reasons, but I brought four books to read, so I laid in my hammock and read and listened to the wind blow through the trees. The blue jays were very vocal begging for peanuts, and we had a pair of chipmunks that thought our campsite was a race track. It was pretty funny watching them chase each other back and forth, back and forth.
  It was a spectacular trip for my sister and I (her husband doesn't camp and neither does my wife). We first came to Rock Creek in about 1957 with our parents, and the love of it has stayed with us all these years (we come up every August for the last many years). I'm already anticipating next year's trip, I'm not sure how I'll manage to wait!  :camping:

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Eastern Sierra Forum / Heading up in two weeks
« on: August 03, 2012, 08:47:28 AM »
Hello everyone: I have posted here in the past but seem to have forgotten my original username and login (must be old age setting in!) So now I'm back. I've been coming to Rock Creek since my parents brought my sister and I up in the late 50's. She and I are coming up for a week from 8/19 through 8/25 and I can't wait. We try to come up every year, and we spent a week in Big Meadow last year. Just the chance to lay in my hammock and listen to the wind blow through the trees is heaven to me. She doesn't fish, but I do. If I catch some that's just icing on the cake. Just the chance to be away from phones and TV's for a week is good enough for me. I enjoy reading everyone's posts, and I get more charged p every time I visit. I usually log on in the weeks and months prior to a trip, but during the winter I sometimes need my RC fix and I'll log in just to see what's going on. If anyone will be at the Creek while we're there, I'd be happy to share a cold one. We're going to try for Big Meadow again. We've got a system/schedule that we've developed over the years that pretty much guarantees us a good spot. Last year when we arrived there were only 3 occupied spaces at Big Meadow. That's why we like it there, there aren't tons of sites, so it feels kind of isolated. Anyhow, save me some fish, I'll be there in two weeks!

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