Hot Springs, Lakes, Rivers Oh My!!

We recently visited an amazing new place called Mono Hot Springs Resort, located in the south western Sierras.   We teamed up with another super mom Ashley and her 3 daughters.  We booked a  walk-in tent stocked with camp beds. This place also had a spa with baths and hot tubs fed by natural hot spring water.

Picture this, high sierra mountains, river,lakes and hot-springs, oh my!

We wake early for our 1st adventure. At 8:00am the heat is already super intense. Not your average heat but the kind you cant get away from, causing you to move slow mixed with high elevation. We left camp early to hike to the closest lake called Doris Lake. According to the map this lake is super close. We packed a bunch of water, snacks, and floaties, drove to the trail head to start. 

Their website states "Doris Lake is an easy one mile hike from the resort and a popular swimming hole for decades."  We figured it would be a perfect hike for the little ones. NOT!

It was extremely HOT so we had to go slow, especially with two 6 year olds. We were sweating faster than we could drink.  The trail started to get quite  obscure which was worrisome. When we saw the sign to Doris Lake telling us to go left, we went left. About 30 minutes later the kids were over it and us moms were questioning the route. We ran into another couple who informed us we were headed to Tule Lake, the wrong lake!

Taking a break in the shade
We did an about-face  to try to find the correct lake. At this point we were conserving our water, sweating bullets, and poor little Reagan fell down and was crying. We pretty much dragged the kids along until we got back on the correct trail and 15 minutes later made it to Doris Lake, hallelujah!

The lake was amazing, a true hidden Sierra mountain lake surrounded by large granite boulders, a cliff jumpers heaven.

After playing a bit in the water and having lunch, we start to hear thunder. We were warned by another hiker that it may be a good idea to head back before the storm comes in. Sadly, we cut our trip short and started packing up to make it back before the storm came in.

Sierra storms are unlike anything we experience in Santa Cruz, purely amazing. We hiked back in our bathing suites and it  started to dump, I'm talking huge fat raindrops, sheets of rain which was soon followed by hail and a ton of thunder and lightening.  What a change from 100 degree weather to freezing hail! Ashley and I are pulling little Willa and Reagan along while the bigger girls hurried ahead of the group to make it back to the car. 

Upon arriving at the car we see the windows were open and everything was soaked! Instead of heading back to camp we decided to go hang out in the hot tub fed by natural hot springs. That was a day of firsts for many of us, 1st grueling hike, 1st hike in a thunder storm, 1st hike in a hail storm. What an epic adventure, cant wait to go back next year!

Home Sweet Home
Made it to Doris Lake!

Hot Springs on the river
Mud Mask!
Natures Spa
Hot Springs

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