Getting Away for a Bit on Pierce, 1.11.13

With a busy upcoming week, I needed a little time to organize my thoughts and get a plan of action together.  What better way to do that than to get out of the house and hike on a Friday morning?  I chose Pierce as I hadn’t been there in a couple of months, and the trail was bound to be pretty well-trodden.

I pulled into the lot on Mt. Clinton Road and no one was there, which surprised me, because it was almost 9:00a.  I got ready and headed across the Crawford Connector and onto the Crawford Path.  I knew the trail would be easy to moderately graded, so I put the hiking into cruise-control and decided to have a longer break at the Mizpah Cutoff junction.  My brain then went to work on several projects for the next week, solving the puzzles and figuring out a time schedule to get it all done.  Before long, I knew I was getting close to the junction and within a few more minutes, I was there.  I got myself a snack and then realized that I had company.  The grey jays had found me and knew I had food.

My friend the grey jay, looking carefully at me for a snack at the Mizpah Cutoff junction.

My friend the grey jay, looking carefully at me for a snack at the Mizpah Cutoff junction.

With snacks for everyone and a nice break, it was time to tackle the next mile to the summit.  This is a fun mile, because the nature of the forest changes and soon you realize that the treeline is near.  For the last little section, you can see out to the west before the junction with the Webster Cliff Trail.  At the junction, I added a jacket, as the wind had picked up just a little and I didn’t want to be too cold out where there was no tree cover.  I then went up to the summit to check out the views and a few pictures.  The light was pretty weak as the sky was full of high level clouds.  They were high enough not to obscure my view of the Washington and the other Presidentials, which were totally in the clear.  I could see darker sky to the west and from the weather reports, I knew a change in weather was on the way.  The summit area was crunchy windblown styrofoam under foot, and heavily rimed iced trees guarding the summit itself.

I found the pin at the summit area, but USGS markers were definitely buried under the snow and ice.

I found the pin at the summit area, but USGS markers were definitely buried under the snow and ice.

Heading back down to the junction with the Crawford Path, through the rime and snow covered trees.

Heading back down to the junction with the Crawford Path, through the rime and snow covered trees.

At the Crawford Path and Webster Cliff junction, with Washington in the background.

At the Crawford Path and Webster Cliff junction, with Washington in the background.

Photos done, it was time to descend back down to the Crawford Path and down to the car.  I moved quickly down the trail and saw my first person and dog of the day.  We exchanged greetings and kept moving.  I encountered quite a few other groups along the way, but kept a good pace and was back at the car having enjoyed a morning out and having had time to think and prepare for a new week.

Rime and snow covered trees on the Crawford path near the junction with the Webster Cliff Trail.

Rime and snow covered trees on the Crawford path near the junction with the Webster Cliff Trail.

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2 thoughts on “Getting Away for a Bit on Pierce, 1.11.13

  1. Hi Summerset,

    I can relate to your comments about putting your brain to work to think about projects, etc while hiking to your destination. It is truly amazing how quickly time can pass by. It sounds like we might share something in common, i.e. there’s never a dull moment, even when hiking solo! 🙂

    John

  2. John, no there’s never a dull moment hiking at all! Hiking solo definitely gives my brain the down time needed to sort through and process stuff. Thanks for stopping by!

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