Overnight at Gore Lake in the Eagles Nest Wilderness
The Gore Range, Vail, Colorado
For the second time this summer, I had actually set off to backpack into Booth Lake outside of Vail for the night, but when I got the the trailhead, there were ‘No Overnight Parking’ signs all over the parking lot. Not wanting a ticket, I called the forest service who had me call the Vail PD who told me leaving a note is useless and I would most likely be ticketed and possibly even towed if I parked there. My best option was to head back to town and park in the structure to take the in-town bus back out to the trail. At least he then ‘thanked’ me for the phone call…
With my camera-heavy pack and a leash-retarded dog, that sounded just terrible. Plan B: Gore Lake.
Six miles into the Gore Range and the Eagles Nest Wilderness, Gore Lake sits at 11,414′ at the base of Snow Peak (13,024′), Willow Peak (13,357′), and Red Peak (13,189′). Not only was I literally chasing mountain goats out of my camp, but as one of the more popular hikes in the Gores, it wasn’t exactly a secluded overnight with all the other backpackers (I was told the fishing was good…) up there. However, after coming face-to-face with a bear at 11pm a week before at Crater Lake and then death-marching it up to Deluge Lake earlier this year, the hike up to Gore Lake was a welcomed peaceful walk-in-the-park.