Duck Lake and Duck Peak

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We visit what Dad calls "Other Ducker".

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Although I had climbed Duck Peak (with 'the Little Woman', Tom, and Susan), I had not been to Duck Lake. And we were looking for something short due to the oppressive smoke in the area. So after a 50-minute drive, we were on our feet.

After a short wander through the woods, we found a pretty good cow trail. There are lots of cows here, so these trails braid and disappear, but eventually get you to a saddle.

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With more of the same taking you down to the lake.

Smoky. Theme for the day.

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Ruby doesn't mind. She was having a blast.

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We followed cow trails past the lake, then into the upper meadows.

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This photo was trying to capture the sparkle of frost on the grass. Yes, FROST. It may still be August, but up high some of the plants are already turning colors.

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Instead of hiking up to the saddle, we saw a more direct route. Steep.

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Looking back down the valley we had just climbed.

Note: we'll return down the left-hand ridge.
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Again, today's theme: smoky. That's the high peaks of the Lick Creek range.

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Summit shot.

Ruby knows how to drink from a bike water bottle or the camelback, so her tongue isn't out because of thirst. It's because she does about 6 miles for every 1 of mine.

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She's studying the valley for any sign of ground squirrels that need to be chased. Approach
On our way down the ridge, I didn't see a single footprint. But there were a whole lot of empty beer cans laying around. I suspect the trash was left by a certain group of "winter sports" enthusiasts, whom I generally credit with no respect for the outdoors. Approach

Note: There are cattle grazing all over this area. Ruby did really well until a couple of them started running.... so she finished our hike on the leash.

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