I’m a very experienced hiker and camper so it’s damn near embarrassing that a bear just ate my backpack. I’m normally that annoying nitpicky camper in the group who shoves everything in the bear box at night and tells everyone to take all those smelly items out of your cars, yes even your Chapstick. You can’t mess around when it comes to California’s black bears and yes, Yogi will break into your car for that Bath and Body Works Apple lotion.
It was a super a busy afternoon and early morning in the eastern Sierras with the strenuous yet gorgeous hike past Clark’s Lakes almost killing me. I did, however, find the time to shove delicious wholesome snacks into my face just above Thousand Island Lakes. That, however, was just a few hours before having to chase off Yogi before he ate my digital camera, that was in my delicious backpack.
This hike almost to the Thousand Islands Lakes was very exhausting as it began going up the Rush Creek Trail, gaining 1,300 feet in altitude in just over two miles. Super buggy and yet absolutely gorgeous Clark’s Lakes was the reward along the way for a crazy four-hour hike almost straight uphill up more switchbacks then I could count while panting, wheezing and sweating in the hot eastern Sierras sunshine. At least at the top of those switchbacks, I discovered the green and lush Spooky Meadows along the gorgeous trail.
Does a bear shit in the woods after eating a digital camera?
So after spending six hours on the trail hiking thirteen miles round trip and gaining 3,600 feet in altitude total, I might have been a bit tired when I rolled into camp and threw my mostly empty pack on our campsites picnic table. It was mostly full of the food smelling trash from all the snacks I inhaled on the hike, and maybe an extra Stinger honey and dark chocolate cracker bar cashew butter bars I cherish (as I have to drive to the closest REI sixty miles from my home to purchase them) So basically not a very delicious looking backpack, that probably really smelled like Deet, armpits and dirty campers. But Yogi Bear must have been a fan of my lavender natural deodorant after hike odor, as he had no issue gnawing through my pack for the treasures located inside.
Or my digital camera. Which seems like it would be much too crunchy for a bear or any creature to find a real culinary delight.
Our campsite in the eastern Sierras is just chock full of California’s black bears and every afternoon around two p.m. Yogi and Blondie go out looking for gullible forgetful hikers and campers.
Well, yesterday they found one at campsite number seventy-seven located two hundred miles from the nearest Whole Foods, I lost a few delicious healthy trail snacks, a Camelbak bladder that now has bear bites in it, and what used to be a backpack. I really am quite angry with myself for forgetting my backpack on our picnic table for literally not very long at all. I have to say this was day six of camping at New Shady Rest. In that six days, we saw many adorable chipmunks but neither Alvin or Simon or Theodore warned us that two delightful, cute and mischievous bears roamed this campsite at two every afternoon preying on forgetful exhausted dirty campers. The first six days of camping at New Shady Rest, we didn’t even see any deer in our camp; I was not expecting the Bernstein Bears to throw in an appearance and treat my backpack like an appetizer!
My first impression when I saw a bear inhaling my backpack was to lay on the horn in the RV but other campers said,
“Oh no. We have to alert the camp host and he will deal with the bear” Which meant the camp host drove over in his golf cart five minutes later and whistled extremely loud at Yogi. Which worked for the pretty bear… Until an hour later when an extremely ugly blond bear wandered through camp. Blondie has the kind of bedraggled blonde locks like she had just wandered out of a nearby trailer park and was also very hungry. And didn’t give a hot damn how many times the camp host whistled at her. Until she finally climbed a tree next to our camp to get away from the constant whistling like any hassled blonde. It was for sure, a very interesting evening in campsite seventy-seven after an exhausting and super fulfilling and challenging hike. So what kinds of tasty treats and snacks should you fill your pre-hike backpack full of before hitting the bear-y beautiful trails of the eastern Sierras?
Do you love homemade granola? You must try this delicious and easy Candied Ginger Granola. This is seriously my favorite granola ever but I’m kind of a sucker for anything with candied ginger in it. Hiking at high elevations over 10,000 feet? Ginger is great to settle your stomach if you are suffering from altitude sickness! Every hiker loves trail mix, right? I love to make my own, as so many store-bought ones have chocolate in them that melts trailside. These are some of my favorite tastiest homemade trail mixes
Interested in store-bought snacks?
If it’s summertime and it’s just too hot to turn on your oven, dude I’ve got you covered. If you actually live in the vicinity of a Whole Foods or Sprouts fill your daypack with these healthy snacks.
So you just hiked fifteen miles in one day. Fuck the beef jerky and almond butter. You deserve a delicious baked good while chilling at an alpine lake! These candied ginger studded cookies are so fantastic; You won’t just bake them one time and you might find yourself throwing them in your Nathan runners backpack every time you trek up Morgan Pass or Mono Pass. They taste amazing while relaxing on the shores of the Sherwin Lakes, I swear.
Whether you hike to challenging Clark’s Lakes or the easier Crystal Lake just outside of Mammoth this summer, fueling your body is so important and having the right delicious snacks once you reach that alpine lake can make or break your hike. Be prepared with some delicious options and whatever you do; Don’t leave your backpack laying around for Yogi or Blondie to munch on!