Continued from the previous page.
HIKING BACK NORTH ON RENDEZVOUS RIDGE
The two miles in reverse along the ridge to the saddle between Little
Teton and Rendezvous Peaks was the same roller-coaster in reverse. Here
are some photos I took going back:
White snow (foreground), white lichens beyond
Little Teton to left, Rendezvous Peak beyond in
What's left of the snow bank that gave me problems
in June; Rendezvous Peak dead ahead
From the place I turned around
I climbed back up to 3,892 feet, went down again to about 3,600 feet,
then reached a fourth high point just east of the saddle at 3,963 feet
before descending Rendezvous Peak on the more gradual east and north
The next photo shows
the trail going up the south side of Rendezvous Peak. I hiked up there
June 23 but not today. Instead, I took the trail to the right along the
SE flank of the peak, aiming for the saddle between Rendezvous and Mt.
This is a view of the ridge from that trail:
A young female hiker took a picture of Cody and me from that trail,
showing the view behind me toward one of the ski lifts on Little Teton:
She was facing the sun so my hair is "glowing."
I went down to the saddle between Rendezvous and Gordon-Lyon on a secondary
trail about the same way I did last time,
avoiding the very steep grade on the primary trail on that side:
Mt. Gordon-Lyon is ahead (north); I aimed toward
the left side of the saddle (left arrow below).
The right arrow points to the much steeper trail.
That was a drop from 3,963 feet to 2,645 feet = 1,318 feet in 1.55
At the saddle I turned left onto the main trail and descended in a
generally westerly direction to the parking area:
I've got more photos of that trail in the June 23 and June 30 entries,
and I'll show a couple more below with less snow than there was in June.
My total GPS distance was 6.77 miles in 3 hr. 40 min.
I actually went a little farther in less time than that. I forgot to
turn my watch back on once for a little distance and I didnít turn it
off several times when I stopped to talk to people, give Cody water,
WHAT WAS DIFFERENT THIS TIME
Although the sky was a little hazy today I had great views of nearby
mountains from the ridge. I couldnít see the volcanoes in the Alaska
Range very well, however.
Iím very disappointed in my photos today. They aren't as good as the
ones I took June 23. Apparently the camera lens was
smudged enough to affect most of the pictures I took today, almost like
what happened when I was up on the ridge the last time. I used the same
settings that I usually do but the quality of the pictures is generally
lousy, in my opinion. I'm still not completely comfortable with my new
Eagle and Symphony, two glacial lakes at the end of the South Fork of the
Eagle River valley
A lot of snow has melted since I was up here on June 30, less than three
The trails were much drier today and there was only one short
patch of snow to walk over -- the same treacherous one on the
east side of Little Teton. I avoided it going outbound and stepped
carefully through it on the way back:
The angle of that picture doesn't make it look problematic but it was
still a literal "slippery slope."
Cody was happy to still have some patches of snow off-trail where he could dig, eat,
and roll around.
The long trail up and down the north side of Rendezvous was much less
muddy than it was in June. There was still one place about 100 feet long
that was a muddy mess and people were still trampling through the alpine
shrubs and other plants to avoid getting dirty or falling down.
a few new kinds of flowers blooming today. I especially liked these little
blue harebells on the ridge:
The next two flowers I saw on June 30 but photographed again:
There were many more tiny pink mountain cranberries than before,
carpeting the northeast side of Rendezvous above 3,500 feet.
WHERE IS EVERYONE??
There were only a few vehicles and people in the parking lot when we got there at
10:20 AM. I didnít see anyone on the trails on my ascent or along the ridge until I was
coming back, about two hours into my hike. There were three folks on the
ridge, three near the saddle,
and about a dozen in the last half mile as I descended the main trail.
I thought there would be more folks out there on a pretty day like this. Maybe they were
all down at Kenai dipnetting!!
Looking back up the main trail as I descended; Gordon-Lyon is L.,
Seriously Ė I read an article this evening on the Alaska Dispatch
website that said the Kenai River was packed with people netting sockeye
salmon today. A family of four can take up to 55 sockeyes. I think
thatís their annual limit, not daily.
Apparently the Seward Hwy. was one long line of traffic from Anchorage
to Kenai today, with many folks headed to the mouth of the river (where
we observed dipnetters from a ridge last weekend). One reporter
sarcastically called it combat fishing and described the bloody carnage
(of the fish, not people!) in nauseating detail.
The sockeyes are coming through in droves. The silver salmon arenít, so
all silver salmon harvesting has come to a halt this week. The few that
do come in must be allowed to swim upstream to spawn.
Above and below: more pretty flowers now on the
lower part of the main trail
We need to find a reasonably-priced source of fresh salmon filets in
Anchorage. Samís Club was out of them. Maybe Safeway? We got some good
fresh salmon at Safeway in Seward at a much better price than at the
retail outlets run by the fishing companies.
JIM'S BIKE RIDE
Jim had a fun ride downhill on dirt/gravel Arctic Valley Road for about seven
miles, then pretty easy going on pavement the last five miles on more flat
terrain. He had enough energy left to ride four more miles to/from the
library after supper.
Ready to go
The upper seven miles were very dusty but at 10:30
to 11 AM when he was riding down only four or five vehicles raised dust
going past him. When I came down at 2:30 PM there were a couple dozen
vehicles. Jim's timing was good.
He didn't take any
pictures during his ride. This is one I took as he began his descent on
Arctic Valley Road at the beginning of his ride:
Once again we paid $5 to park at the Arctic Valley trailhead.
Although I was hiking on trails in Chugach State Park, even folks who have
annual park passes are supposed to pay that fee because the
trailhead parking area is on ski resort property.
Sometimes I think I should have purchased an annual Chugach State Park pass
for $25 when we first got here but it wouldn't do us any good at
this trailhead. So far it would have covered the $5 we paid to
park at the Glen Alps trailhead for Flattop Mountain and the $5
we'll have to pay to park at Lake Eklutna tomorrow.
Since we don't know how many times we'll be using parking areas
where the pass is valid, we're probably better off not getting
one. We enjoy this immense state park (half a million acres!)
so much that an occasional $5 parking fee is a small price to
pay for the privilege of using it.
Next entry: cycling on the shore of Lake Eklutna north of
"Runtrails & Company" - Sue Norwood, Jim O'Neil,
and Cody the ultra Lab
© 2012 Sue Norwood and Jim O'Neil