The weeks before ski season always leave me in an uncomfortable state of limbo. The days are too short – and cold – for any long mountain bike rides, and hiking requires more layers and planning. Add to that a stupid injury (mine), the start of a bad cold (N) and unusual arctic temps, and we realized our options were limited this weekend. In the end we headed to Fallen Leaf Lake, an area neither of us had been to recently.
It had been awhile since I’d explored the north side of the lake, where little treasures await, including an abandoned boathouse and the stone foundation of what might have been a grand lake house. The vantage point from this side of the lake is unfamiliar, and we both stared at Freel Peak for a second or two before we realized what it was.
The trail on this side of the lake eventually meets up with an enclave of summer homes located in the shadow of Mt. Tallac. While not as extravagant as some of the homes at the end of Fallen Leaf Lake, these were still a far cry from a Forest Service cabin. I’m pretty sure that the paved road out there isn’t plowed in the winter, but as there was nobody around, I couldn’t confirm. We both agreed that having a snowmobile and stockpiled supplies in one of the lakefront properties would make for an awesome winter, considering the backcountry skiing possibilities nearby.