It seems like every summer it gets warm in the valley, the snow disappears from the peaks, and I go running gleefully up into the mountains in shorts, memories of last September fresh in my head. And there I find … LOTS OF LINGERING SNOW. So it is again this year – it takes us something like four hours to posthole our way up Lake Peak. I don’t wear shorts, but Ann wears a skirt and it doesn’t trip any alarms for me. Sigh, perhaps we’ll never learn. Luckily we get supremely good spring weather. It’s so still there is not much sound beyond our feet crunching through the snow. Bird songs and fresh breezes seem to come one at a time, each entirely individual and distinct.
The traverse between Deception Peak and Lake Peak is one of those things you never get exactly right. We question one another and end up scrambling as it seems I always do. The best rule: either stay on top for the exposed 4th class traverse, or stay low on the best tread you can find.
We’re very thankful to be able to descend the ski area runs, which are somewhat free of snow since they have been freed of trees and shade. In all our outing takes over six hours for just over six miles, and I’m as tired as I’ve been on a hike covering twice that distance or more.