So last summer we tried Princeton as our first 14er for the season. We had to turn around on the ridge not far from the summit due to weather. This year we decided to try it again as our first 14er of the summer and had better luck!
We drove in Tuesday evening and slept in the X to get some good rest without a 4AM wake up. The road was in great shape. You could drive up to the 1st switchback past the towers if you wanted.
some cool clouds we saw when getting to the 4wd road
part of the road with the most exposure
We woke up at 6:00 and got to the walking at 6:30
julie getting on the boots
After about ten minutes of walking the road you get your first view of Princeton for the day.
julie and the first view of Princeton
After walking the road for like 40 minutes we came to the trail cutoff. I don't think the real trail is accessible right now due to snow. Here is what the trail junction looks like right now.
trail junction as of 6-2-10
After leaving the road you get a short jaunt on nice trail...it only lasts for a little while though....then you get rocks, rocks, snow, more rocks, loose dirt, rocks and rocks.
the nice part of the trail
julie walking the good stuff
awesome views looking southeast from the trail
After leaving the good stuff, the majority of the trail will look something like this. It really slows down the pace of things. But its okay, your hiking!
There is still some snow to deal with. I think there were five snow fields to cross. Only 3 of those were sizable. The largest was maybe 200 yards long. The shortest was like 30 feet. We used hiking poles to balance across these....a fall on any of them would suck. There is pretty good boot pack through all of them.
Me crossing one of the 3 longer snow fields.
After getting across the snowfields we met up with the main trail as it switchbacks up a few times to gain the ridge.
view on the other side of the ridge
Along the ridge there are a bunch or trail fragments all over. Pick your poison and head toward the top. We tried to stay on bigger rocks when possible to gain elevation quicker and have ourselves a light and not really, but still kind of fun scramble.
view of the summit from where you gain the ridge
julie hiking on part of one trail
from near the summit looking back at the entire route all the way to the radio towers
We summited at 10:10 making our ascent time 3 hours 40 minutes. I was so pumped when we got up there. Such a fun time hiking with the wife. Not a bad first trip this year. It was a bit windy along the ridge, besides that we had a great day. We also shot some video updates along the way and put together a little edit of our day. We never have done this before...its okay for a first go at it. I think with more hiking footage it could be a pretty neat idea, we will probably do that next time. Here is the little video...
Anyhow, we were back to the car at 12:45. Never saw anybody the entire day until we got back to the road. Some group of out-of-towner young guys hiked to the trail junction. Awesome day...now lost creek wilderness this weekend. Good Week!
julie signing the register
Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):
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