| Slogging up Yale - standard route
Long day on Yale. 11 hours up & back… The trail and mountain are doable – just expect a slog. (at least 5 folks summitted this day)
Lesson 1 – if post holing with boots is not fun, post holing with snow shoes is even less fun!
Lesson 2 – if there is snow, go early and go cold.
Weather – very good. Partly cloudy, but strong wind from west. (No precip all day!)
Left trailhead at 7pm – to the summit at 1:30 – back to car at 6pm. (Granted we are slow (and good be in better shape!), but still – it was tough.)
Thick and mushy snow and combined with windy condition.
From trail head - the trail was dry (for those planning to, there's lots of room to camp.) We put on snow shoes well before the creek crossing, and since we had them it that was probably too late. (Two other hikers were snowshoe-less, so it’s not necessary.)
Soon before Tree Line, we hiked / scrambled up a smaller hill which was very tough, but harbinger of things to come. Out of tree line we got hit with mighty wind – fortunately was at our backs. From there, searching for a trail or way to the top, we followed tracks in snow that went right.
We came very close to turning around below “the grassy shoulder” - we had had a tough hike to that point, and couldn't see summitt yet - but chose one more push, straight up….ended up persevering along same path – straight up. Twas a balance of snow, bouldering, and scree. Reaching the ridge was a relief! Wierldy, the wind died down at the summit.
The descent took 4 ˝ hours. Glissading was tough due to mushy snow. We veere - too far to the right of the tracks / trail which was tough to correct - be sure to stay on your line!
All in all – a nice mountain, but a tough day to hike it.
Thumbnails for uploaded photos (click to open slideshow):