Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Training for Mt. Baker Climb 7/11/2009

Burroughs Mountain is without question one of my favorite areas in Mt. Rainier NP. Ever since the first time I followed the trail to Second Burroughs few years ago, engulfed in fog with no views of Rainier whatsoever, there was something about this rocky, windswept route that stayed deeply etched in my heart.

Perhaps it was the feel of being able to escape far away from the rushed city life that this trail conveys so beautifully despite the fact the parking loot is only 3 miles away, perhaps it was beauty of tiny wildflowers scattered among the stone, trying to survive in this harsh environment, or perhaps it was something completely different that made me feel so strongly about this place but from the very first moment I knew I will return here often.

When our Mt. Baker climb got postponed due forecasted T-storms, we hardly could find better alternative destination for the day.

We started from Sunrise Trailhead at around 10:00 a.m. The sun was out, air carried scent of blooming wildflowers, and Rainier, majestically sited in front of us, watched over every step we took.

It did not take long before the trail led us between first and second Burroughs. From there we followed the rocky winding path as it rolled down some 400 ft, passed intersection with Glacier Basin trail, and than regained all the elevation on approach to the third Burroughs.

We arrived just in time for lunch. And what better lunch spot could we find than one that provides first class seats to a view of a giant volcano;so beautiful, so powerful, so mesmerizing.

From this spot we could clearly follow the Emmons Glacier climbing Route from Camp Shurman to the top, and looking really closely, we could even spot few climbers on their way down which reminded us of the purpose of today’s outing, which was to do some self arrest practice and glacier crevasse rescue training, including Z-Pulley.

We must have had a good time practising. Before we knew it, 7 hours flew by. The sun started to set and filled the air with a magical golden glow. The park got quiet as most of the visitors were gone for the day. The resident mountain goats roamed the meadows, enjoying the solitude as much as we did. Amazing day outside!

No comments: