Back to Basics.
"The Mountains are Calling"...John Muir.
In today's day and age, it's easy to get lost in your cell phone and it's becoming increasingly difficult to "unplug". Recently, we traveled to the Eastern Sierras to take in the views near Mammoth Lakes, California. We were in search of the beauty of this area, which is usually covered by snow to most Southern Californian's who dart up from L.A in the wintertime to get some skiing or snowboarding in at Mammoth.
As in nature, things happen which are often unexpected. While we were at Lake Mary, we noticed a patch of dark smoke in the distance..
A fire had just broken out and we couldn't help but feel saddened to know that this beautiful landscape was being destroyed right at that moment. This also changed the course of our visit. Now, as the rascals that we all are, we wanted to see where this fire was taking place, and how bad was it?!...of course the creative part of me thought about the beautiful auburn sunset that was about to light up the sky..
While the fire was like a wild animal thrashing about, and knowing there was nothing we could do, we decided to to seek some tranquility in the natural hot springs and fresh cool mountain lakes. Our favorite lake was Convict Lake. The name alone is gangster so I knew we had to go. We learned of some interesting history that took place at that lake, including how it got it's name. We felt like we were visiting the scene of an old Wild West movie. Convict Lake and Convict Creek got their names after a shoot out by escaped convicts took place there in 1871.
This area is home to over 100 nearby glacier-formed lakes. Two scenic drives worth venturing out to are June Lake Loop and Lake Mary Loop. You can stop at any of these lakes and rent a boat and some fishing gear and enjoy the pleasure of going back in time to simpler days with no technology.
Having grown up near the Pacific Ocean, I had to slip into the fresh mountain waters. At Lake Mary, we slipped into the cool mountain lake with all the benefits of cold water therapy. On the way up we listened to Dr. Chris Ryan's podcast "Tangentially Speaking Podcast" with guest Wim Hoff who talked about the benefits to shocking your system by taking a dip in cold water. The immediate benefits were clear: skin pulls tight and the heart rate increases. Breathing as slowly and deeply as possible is the goal.
A morning dip into the cold fresh lake, a book, skin warming on a warm bedrock...these are all the makings of a great day.