The Beartooth mountains mean more to my husband and I than probably most people. As some of you might know, we got engaged there on a rock overlooking a lake tucked deep in the forest. To say my husband did a good job on the proposal is an understatement. Yes we were dirty from hiking, backpacking, and camping in the wild, but I wouldn’t have had it any other way. I joke that if Brady can ask me to marry him while I was looking like that, he has a heart of gold haha! We always knew that we would make it back to Lost lake, and this summer I had a weekend off from weddings and to my surprise Brady said we should go. He isn’t much of a planner, or committer for that matter, so this was huge haha! We packed up all our gear in our backpacking packs, this time bringing a little less. We hiked the five miles into Lost Lake via the Lake Fork Trail which is ten miles out and back.The trail is located in Custer Gallatin National Forest. The hike in follows a beautiful creek with rushing water backdropped by gorgeous mountains. The trails winds through a luscious forest and it’s pretty private without seeing a whole lot of people along the way. When we first arrived to the lake, we were one of the only campers there. After having been to many very populated national parks, there’s nothing Brady and I love more than being alone without tons of tourists around.

We set up camp near the side of the lake where we got engaged so we’d be close to catch the sunset. During the two day stay we hiked up the mountain above Lost Lake, and around the parameter of the lake. We lounged in our tree hammocks, sat around the fire, played cards, and caught sunset at our rock where Brady proposed. We noticed while trying to take a photo together on the rock, that it is shaped like a pelican, so we named is Pelican Rock. The sunset was spectacular and we got a beautiful cotton candy sky. I enjoyed laying in our hammocks watching the sun go down over the lake behind the mountains most. Since Lost Lake is not a designated campground, there is no fresh water or bathrooms. Brady and I enjoy truly being out the wild and having to experience no commodities such as cell service. There’s something about being detached from all the regular comforts we know, that really make you not only grateful for what you have everyday, but is also so peaceful. Since there’s no fresh water and it would be too heavy to carry it in beings you need it for drinking and cooking, we use a water purification filter that we put into the lake and then we can pump fresh water. We use a tiny gas stove for cooking and have collapsible pots, cups, bowls, and silverware. We also have a very light, compact backpacking tent, sleeping bags, and chairs. We bring in bagged food, dried fruit, granola bars, and nuts. I typically shower in the lake, although getting in is quite a challenge with mountain water being so cold.

Brady is a master at building fires and even built us a fire ring of boulders. He uses a manual hand saw to cut wood for the fires. We drank hot chocolate and just enjoyed being together. It was really special to come back to this place and to share it all over again with the one I love most.

 

9/15/19

BEARTOOTH MOUNTAINS // MONTANA

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PHOTOGRAPHY BY STACY BOHL WITH ILY STUDIOS