Laura and I took our first little mini backpacking adventure together last weekend to test out some new gear we've acquired. It was a short little hike, only just over two miles in from the trailhead to Barclay Lake. The weather was perfect for hiking, dry but not too hot. The lake was gorgeous with Bearing Mountain rising like a four thousand foot rock wall rising almost directly out of the water. It was early enough in the season for it not to be be overrun by other backpackers, there were a few day hikers and families through the afternoon, but once dusk started to settle it quieted down very nicely. We threw rocks, chilled out, tried out my new stove, ate some Mountain House brand backpacking food (the lasagna with meat sauce wasn't too bad at all), chilled out some more, relaxed on the beach, kicked the hacky sack, relaxed a little more, watched the sun set, did a little more chilling out, then crawled into our new MSR tent (which we named Mr. Saul Rosenberg). The whole experience was a complete success! We're looking forward to our next trip to Melakawa Lake next month. That should be a slightly more comprehensive trip with quite a bit more altitude gain then Barclay Lake. Bring on the summer!