Antelope Lake


Riley's Human
Jan 12, 2007
Just got back from my annual trip to Antelope Lake. I don't normally do a trip report unless something interesting happened. I came up 395 to Janesville because of the construction on Highway 70. Just about the time I hit the top of the grade I met the Mormon crickets. Not quite enough to make the road slippery but close. Also found them along the paved 28N03. Kind of odd I didn't find many along the dirt roads and none at the lake or North of the lake. I should have tried fishing with them because worms sure weren't doing the trick :) I had heard the Rainbow gathering was going to be held in the Plumas NF but not until July. One of my favorite things is going out the lookouts, visiting Taylor Lake and just exploring the Forest. So of course I accidentally ran across the gathering on forest road 28N15 near Red Rock lookout. In my opinion a really poor place to hold an event. Narrow loose dirt road on the side of the mountain. I can't see how it won't leave lasting damage. Where the Mormons hold their gathering would have been a much better choice. Even this early there must have been 500 or more spread out along the road. They were very nice. Waved and gave me the peace sign, thanked me for driving slow. Antelope Lake - Craig Ruth A single FS guy was watching. That was to change! I had some great dashcam footage but by the time I realized I should save it it was already overwritten :( A couple days late I decided to head up to Thompson Peak only to find the gate closed. A tiny sign on the gate said it was closed due to vandalism. /Grrrr
The road to the peak hits the road to Janesville and the 28N15. I nearly got run off the road by of FS Law Enforcement vehicles headed to the gathering. I also heard some radio traffic where they were running licenses etc. On the way home I passed more FS law enforcement vehicles heading up 395. Not to mention the local Sherriff hanging out at the Chevron station and the CHP cruising the paved roads. I really think they plan on making it so unpleasant they'll camp in some other state next time.
Craig, yes you had many interesting happenings. I don't believe we've encountered Mormon crickets in the northern Sierra. We're glad you did not slide on the ruby slime. And, oh boy, the Rainbow Gathering is on. They were not able to recruit you and Riley into joining? A little tie dyed for both of you might have looked pretty dandy. It is sad they continue with these monstrously huge gatherings - and try to claim leave no trace. And, law enforcement is usually needed. Several years backs hundreds gathered in the Grizzly Flat area on the Eldorado National Forest. It was peace and love until, unfortunately, the Hells Angels showed up to take advantage of the event. It turned into mayhem.

On a much happier note the lookouts looked great and it is great fun to be out exploring. We're glad you and Riley had a good time and thanks for sharing.
Craig. Thanks for this. I am all for freedom and people enjoying the outdoors. I am opposed to vandalism, screwing up habitats and human waste scattered everywhere. Too bad some rich jerk that owns too much prime western forest land does not provide these overgrown children a place to make a mess, then go in afterwards to cut what is valuable followed by a full replant and native habitat restoration. There are enough over-rich absentee landowners around to take turns hosting these folks once every 20 or 30 years.
I have no problem with hippies but any event that large needs a permit to assure the proper resources will be in place, cleanup, security etc.

The crickets are interesting. In all the years I've been going up there I've never seen them before. I did run into a swarm of flying bugs once which was pretty annoying in a open top Jeep :)
I'm glad I drove that area when I did. That's quite a large closure. I heard a rumor they're just going to move the gathering to another location. Probably not on the Plumas :)
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