On hot days in the middle of summer, those oases we retreat to in search of reprieve can fill up quicker than we’d like. It’s days like these, when you’re shoulder to shoulder on a sandstone bench with your feet paddling in waters occupied by more floaties than hiking boots, that make you wonder if there might be a better solution.
There is: take a walk. Heat makes us crazy, and in times like these we resort to the most readily available option. If you can tolerate the heat for an hour or two and hike to your cold-water salvation, you may find indeed a quieter, cooler pool without the chaos of crowds. Here are a few suggestions to get your backcountry excursion going in the right direction.