26 July 2011

Granite Mountain

Saturday was just about the most spectacular day of the year. We tried our best to get an early start, but when the sun is shining everyone else in Seattle has the same idea. We decide to attempt Granite Mountain on this gorgeous day. We tried to climb it last year, one evening after work and then earlier this year, but each time we turned back early for different reasons. Last year, we turned back because we were quickly loosing light and there was rumor of bear sightings. Earlier this year, we turned back because of all late snowfall still covering a significant portion of the trail. This weekend the berries have yet to ripen and the snow has slowly made its way off the mountain for the most part.
Standing tall at an elevation of 5600 feet, there are spectacular views in every direction. Visible are alpine lakes both frozen over and uncovered, snow capped mountains, and peaks galore.

An old fire lookout with Mt. Rainier in the background.

The last quarter of a mile is a scramble up these large boulders. One false move and you are plummeting hundreds of feet below. Cameron's long appendages make tasks like this a cake walk, I envy him in such moments.
Despite all the people on this trail, it is steep enough and long enough to space you out. The entire day, we were lucky enough to never have others hiking around us. As a result, we had no one to take our photo, so we used a rock as our tripod and struck a pose.

The beargrass was in full bloom dotting the mountainside.

Making my way back down the trail.

Weekends like this are rare, so when we have them they must be seized. Granite Mountain was the perfect way to spend a spectacular sun drenched day in Seattle.

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