I got out for a solo hike into Indian Heaven. I wanted to check how dry it was and what the bugs were like. This is the earliest in the season I have hiked this route but I figured with the year we have been having it would be pretty dried up and bug free. So it was dried up, almost no mosquitoes but the horse and black fly were still going strong. So no stopping, just keep moving to keep the bugs away. The lakes and stream levels look more like September then July. If the weather continues like this some of the lakes that never dry up will this year.
I did my usual route of coming in at Placid Lake trailhead then follow trail 29a to where it ends and then follow abandon trail 29a to the abandon Cascade Crest Trail. In some small areas there is nothing left of abandon 29a trail. I then took the CCT to Bear Lake. It turned out to be hotter and buggier then I like so I finished the loop on the easy to follow PCT and Placid Like trail. I got in some off trail exploring around Big Meadows. I found some new meadows and hiked up a bit of Rush Creek for the first time. On sections of the trail I had to watch my steps as little tree fogs were all over the trail. On two occasions I had the thrill of spooking some elk. Nothing the sound of large wild animal crashing through the woods in an unknown direction to get your heart racing.