Friday, August 26, 2016


 "God never made an ugly landscape. All that the sun shines on is beautiful, so long as it is wild." John Muir

It is not easy to get to Loon Lake.  Two highways of mountain turn and switchbacks meandering up into the Sierra leading to a Y in the road with one pointing the way to the lake. On my first trip, I wondered where are we going?  On my last,  when I knew the roads, I counted down the miles with anticipation.

In the late afternoon, the lake glistens in the background the of silhouetted pines. There is a lot more water in it than the year before. California's ongoing drought that has been plaguing the state for the last five years has eased up a bit in its northern region this past winter, that it now seems like a distant memory. Some patches of snow can even be seen on the horizon of mountains, while the cobalt waters of the lake are brimming up against its rugged boulder-lined shore.

"This is true freedom, a good practical sort of immortality."

"Another glorious Sierra day," naturalist, John Muir wrote,  "In which one seems to be dissolved and absorbed and sent pulsing onward we know not where. Life seems neither long nor short, and we take no more heed to save time or make haste than do the trees and stars. This is true freedom, a good practical sort of immortality."

At 6,378 feet, Muir's spirit haunts this alpine lake cradled by rocky spires. The lake pools across some 76,000 acres in the northern section of the Crystal Basin Recreation Area in the Eldorado National Forest along the western slopes of the Sierra Nevada Mountains.

Nestled up close to the federally protected Desolation Wilderness, the recreation area is capped by the majestic granite peaks and traversed by lakes, reservoirs and streams spanning over 85,000 acres of forested rugged terrain along the Crystal Range. The lake was created in the 1960s by the Sacramento Metropolitan Utility District as part of a network of mountain hydropower plants. The nearby is Loon Lake Chalet, a popular winter recreation destination. While in the summer, three campgrounds and the boat ramp provide areas perfect for camping, hiking and kayaking.

Current Adventures Kayak School and Trips has been hosting kayaking campers for the for the annual Perseid Meteor Shower during its peak in August for nearly a dozen of years. All the meals, camping equipment and kayaks provided, paddlers and first-time campers enjoy a cozy "roughing it" in-style camp-out. Here are some photo highlights of our past trip they're with Current Adventures as we explore the lake's many sapphire colored coves and bays and textured granite islands.

 “Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out that going to the mountains is going home;" wrote Muir  "That wildness is a necessity; and that mountain parks and reservations are useful not only as fountains of timber and irrigating rivers but as fountains of life.”
It's so true of Loon Lake because, after each visit, I leave with tired muscles but recharged soul and spirit.

 If you want to go
Current Adventures Kayak School and Trips 
PHONE: 530-333-9115 or Toll-Free: 888-452-9254
FAX: 530-333-1291
USPS: Current Adventures, P.O. Box 828, Lotus, CA 95651
owner Dan Crandall