I have wanted to visit Fire Lake for quite some time now. What a better weekend to do so than for the Summer Solstice. I packed it up Friday morning and headed out to the Uintas. The drive in was pleasant and the weather just perfect. I arrived at the Crystal Lake trail head, put on the boots, and headed in. The was sort of a repeat hike for the first leg as I stayed at Long Lake last weekend. I made a push to get to Long Lake, then headed for Island Lake. Just past Long Lake the trail heads off into the woods, and descends into a basin overlooking Duck Lake. I then climbed a set of moderate switch backs that wrap through the forest with shade and flora to enjoy. The last switchback had Aspens growing in it, not something I see to often in the Uintas. Couple of short switchbacks and I found myself standing at Island Lake. The plan was to camp @ Fire Lake, so I made my stay short.
I kind of had to figure out how to get to Fire Lake, there is not a well marked trail. I just looked at the map and kind of drew a line and hiked for it. After passing a few ponds, I found myself standing on the north end of Fire Lake. This is a really glaciated basin, with excellent views. After taking a stroll around the lake, I settled on a spot that had epic views. I fished for a bit, but just could not land one. So I figured it best if I set up shop. As I was finishing my tent, my friend Jason showed up. As we were finishing unpacking, a line of clouds off to the east crept in over the heart of the Uintas. The view from camp was like having a porch to watch the sunset. The clouds were amazing! The moon climbed out of the clouds on fire, and it was breath taking to say the least. Darkness fell, and after a few shots, it was time to turn in. The overnight temps were upper 30's, so I was glad to have my down bag with me. Morning brought out the coffee and breakfast, as the sun climbed out of some slight overcast which kept the temps chilly. The clouds moved out and we decided to hike to Island Lake. It was very windy, and nearly impossible to fish with a fly rod. So I just took a stroll around the lake to check the place out. There were a ton of campers at Island, so we knew our choice at Fire was a good one.
After just getting pounded by the wind, we headed back up to Fire to fish and relax. Evening came and dinner was on the agenda. I fished some more, got a few bites, but skunked again on the fly rod. The moon came up and the night set in. After enjoying the sound of silence, I was off to bed. I was up early because I had 5 miles up and down to get to the car. The hike out was mild, sunny, and beautiful. This was a great trip, and it was nice to be in the mountains again. Enjoy the slideshow below.