Off Grid: Camping Sierra’s Highland Lakes

Take a right off California Hwy 4/Ebbetts Pass Highland Lakes exit, follow the unpaved road for 5 miles and find yourself in scenic splendor.

I must be honest, I’ve never considered myself an “outdoors” kinda girl.

I grew up around manicured gated communities and the aquamarine colored swimming pools of Palm Springs, California.

So after about three days of camping, I’m usually past expiration. The combination of dirt, sweat and Deet has me clamoring for a shower.

But once I checked myself before I wrecked myself, I surrendered to the beauty and solitude of the forest.

Our annual family camping trip took us to Highland Lakes after reading Kevin Gong’s epic hiking blog. Kevin is amazing. Dude’s got serious stamina and hiking insight.

When I go camping, I get all fired up for the gear.  It will be my home-away-from-home and I need to like what I am looking at.  Ah—h just look at those beauties.

Our first hike lead us through Gardner Meadow with the wildflowers in full bloom. It felt like walking through a Monet painting.  Surreal.

After the hike, it was time for a little lake action. Highland Lakes has two lakes adjacent to the campsite and Asa Lake is within a days hike.

Our days ended with the sunset from Upper Highland Lake and a glass of delicious Russian River Pinot. After all you got to have a lil’ creature comfort from home.

And before bedtime, I would read this little monster his favorite bedtime story. He just loved this tent.


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  1. Elaine Taylor says

    What a fabulous entry, you are so gifted Danielle, you even make me want to go hiking. The very bottom picture reminds me a little of Kenny when he was little (he hung with me a lot) ~ I think it is the smile. xo

    • Elaine Taylor says

      That was you even make me want to go camping :-) ~ which if anyone knows me ~ well, they would have not thought they would ever hear that from me! xo

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