Hiking 6:00:00  14.4 mi (25:00 / mi) +1305m 19:30 / mi
shoes: Saucony Peregine 2
Backpacking with Sam and Presto in the Trinity Alps! It was super cold this morning and difficult to extract ourselves from our sleeping bags, but we managed and there was only a small amount of ice on my Nalgene, so not *too* cold, I guess? We packed up camp and started back.
We decided to hit up Echo Lake on the way back, which we'd skipped on the way out because we were worried about getting to camp after dark. It was a very nice place for a snack with a really nice cirque and some great views of the surrounding cliffy mountains. Then we were just backtracking until Red Mountain Meadow, where we dropped our packs and took the trail up to Granite Peak.
We'd tried Granite Peak a year or so ago on Memorial Day Weekend when there was still snow and had to turn around because it was too sketchy with the snow. Wow, was that a good decision. The Granite Peak trail made the Seven Up Peak trail look like a sidewalk. In places it was the width of a single shoe, on an angle on sandy dirt that was sliding down the mountain. The slope felt like it was somewhere in the 60-80 degree range, so it was probably around 35-45 degrees. It was INSANE. I was displeased, but we made it to the top. Presto immediately flopped down and went to sleep as though to say, you people are CRAZY!! I am going to pretend this isn't happening.
The views from the top were awesome, but it was hard to relax knowing that we had to go back down the same trail we'd come up. After some lunch we headed back down. Knowing what was coming somehow made it worse, but we all made it down without mishap. We put our packs back on and started the super long descent to the car, where we arrived just at sunset.
Awesome, awesome trip! This very well may be our last California backpacking trip for the foreseeable future, so I'm glad we made it a good one!