Sunday, June 17, 2012

Second 10K-foot Peak

The second mountain that was over 10,000 feet in elevation that I climbed was Mount Washburn in Yellowstone National Park. Following is a simple photo essay of my hike to the summit via one trail and down the other side by a different trail.

It was a very nice hike and I was pretty sure by this time that I was not one of those people who is strongly affected by altitude. I know that 10,000 feet isn't much by mountaineering standards, but I've met people who get sick climbing peaks at around that elevation. I definitely am not one of them.

And, of course, I didn't see the warning signs about not hiking alone due to grizzly bear activity until I got to the end of the hike. This was because they didn't have the warnings posted where I started the hike. Only where I ended up!

This is just past the paved parking lot where Carole dropped me off for my hike.

The two main trails to the top were originally created for wheeled traffic. This one was made for automobiles and is still used for that purpose by the Park Service and other official folk.

Looking around at the real mountains. I was really stunned at the damage to the forests by the pine beetle that has reached nasty levels due to global warming.

That was my goal. The ranger station on the summit of Mount Washburn. A long way to go.

Vast wilderness.

As you can see, this "trail" is mainly for official vehicles. One maintenance truck passed me at one point. That was a buzz kill.

This was my first view of the trail that I would be taking for the way down. It was originally intended as a wagon road for visitors to access the summit.

Another view of the old wagon road.

Bob at the summit sign.

10,243 feet. To date, the second highest mountain I've ever hiked.

Looking off toward the other side of the park, toward Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone.

Not sure why they put this pile of stones here. Stored for later stonework? Or to block the trail?

Washburn has topography unlike any eastern peak.

I could have soaked up the scenery and not moved an inch.

Looking back toward the ranger station where I had been.

Obligatory self-portrait.

Trail road back toward the parking area where Carole would pick me up.

Another view of the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone off in the distance.

Bighorn sheep. Ewes and calf.

Looking back toward the massif.

Almost down to the main road! (I really wanted to climb that peak just beyond, but we had other plans.)

I think this one is called Dunraven Peak. I want to hike up to the summit next time I'm there.

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