After getting shut down followed by a mellow walk in the rain, Lynn and I were both highly motivated to have a longer day out. We woke up early, maybe even before the sun was officially up and started caffeinating ourselves for the day. The start of this hike also happens to be a gated road that goes up a ski resort and it just so happened a couple of employees were driving up the hill, and as they unlocked the gate I ran over to their truck and asked if they would mind giving us a ride...ten minutes later we were at least 3 miles and 500ft higher...very auspicious way to begin our day.
Once we got dropped off we followed a very nice trail through the woods and then up above treeline. We actually hemmed and hawed a little before we decided to go up Mt. Richardson. Originally we thought of doing a 3 peak link up, but confronted with steep rock and new snow it wasn't happening...plus there was a cloud on the top of the mountain....I don't like clouds.
Lynn on Mt. Richardson
A couple thousand feet up off the valley floor the air was noticeably colder and we hit the snow line. Flowers on the ridge were covered in ice, I could see my breath, and put on my gloves.
Snow Line on Mt. Richardson
By the time Lynn and I got to the top of the mountain I had everything I brought on...a puffy, vest, gortex top and bottom, hat, gloves, buff, and walking uphill...it was freaking COLD. At least we could kind of see, the clouds were definitely in and out, but the peek-a-boo effect was very pleasant.
Lynn and I on Top of Mt. Richardson
The cold temps didn't really encourage a ton of lingering so when we were good and cold we headed back down. By the time we hit the valley floor the sun was out and we were back to shorts and t-shirts....and it was only about noon since we had gotten up early and caught the ride....to early to go back to the car so we decided to head up the valley and take a look around.
After convincing Lynn that Fossil Mountain was the equivalent in height to Flat top she jumped on board to go fossil hunting and maybe tag the peak. We found thousands of fossils, so many we really mostly moseyed our way up most of the mountain, stopping every few feet to look at fossils, it was pretty much amazing.
Fossil mountain is the peak at the far end of the lake in the picture below.
Shadows Looking Across to Fossil Mountain
We trotted most of the way back and at marveled how amazing it is that our feet can take us so far. Definitely a highlight of the trip.
Slide Show of Lynn and My Pics