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Mesahchie Mark
Really Useful Engine



Joined: 10 May 2005
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Mesahchie Mark
Really Useful Engine
PostFri Jun 22, 2007 4:08 pm 
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Granite Mountain Solstice Hike
June 21st, 2007

The 2007 TNAB Summer Solstice Hike to Granite Mountain was huge - as in huge turnout.  23 hikers showed up to partake in the annual event.  As always, this hike was about the people:

Chris M, Chris S (CHR15), Dale, Damon, Dan, Darlene (with dad Jim and bro Trent), Dave, Don & Lynda (Mr & Mrs Constant), Jason (Coasty), Joseph, John (Moosefish), Larry & Jason, Monty (puzzlr), Russ, Steve (Yukon222), Schmidt Altitudes (Jeremy and Tisha), Yet and Yours Truly.  WOW!

It was great to have a vet like Russ show up.  Darlene made the trip all the way from New York just to be a part of the fun (she's got connections).  And newbie Monty helped round out the (quite literal) crowd.

The group began arriving at the trailhead well before 6:00 PM and started up the trail in small increments, so the total size of the group was unknown until we all gathered on the summit.  The weather turned out to be great, despite the threat of rain.  The trail is in good condition, up to final approach to the lookout where it becomes alternating snow slog and large talus scramble.  Fun stuff!

The group began gathering before 8 PM and stayed until after 9 PM.  It was a bit chilly, but the food and good cheer kept spirits high.  The large group was a bit much for the ranger on hand to monitor the festivities - we may have to come up with a different plan next year.  smile.gif

The return trip down was a kick, as folks took turns glissading into the small basin east of the summit under a half-full moon.  (I understand there is some video, hehe).  It took a while, but eventually we all trickled back to the trailhead, tired but elated.  What a cool way to usher in the summer season!

--------------
Cheers,

Mesahchie Mark
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Yet
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Joined: 23 Apr 2005
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PostFri Jun 22, 2007 4:33 pm 
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"Ooops...I did it again!"

As soon as everyone passed me, I was cruising along the trail, which was relatively easy to follow. Every so often, I would glance at my surroundings...which would take my breath away each time...or whatever was left of it.

Then came snow. Which thus far has stumped me. I was following a bootpath, when suddenly I found myself in the midst of boulders the size of Goliath as if I were David. I spent about 15-20 minutes trying to figure how to get out and back on the snow. Once I did, I congratulated myself (since nobody else was around to do it).  embarassedlaugh.gif Later, I found out that just a few feet to the left of the giant boulders was a nice little snow-free trail. Of course, I completely missed it; hence the Britney Spears reference above - reminiscent of P^3, but only that part. Because after that little detour, I was back on the trail. Yeah!

Mark, being the saint that he is, came back from almost being at the top to meet me at the talus field. He asked me if I wanted to do the snow or rocks. Without hesitation I pointed at the rocks.

My first scramble of this sort. Oh. What. Fun! Thank you Mark for guiding, assisting, and cheering me on. smile.gif

Made it to the top. And lo and behold, there were people! And food! Altidude had a nice margarita waiting for me.

And since I apparently looked famished and wasted from that loooong journey, people started shoving cookies in my mouth. embarassedlaugh.gif

Jen's cookies (lovely wife of Chris the "the shirt changer") were AMAZING!!!

Altidude and Altidudette, yukon222, Joseph, Chris M, and I waited while Mark wrapped up some business with the ranger, and we all headed down together.

The trip down was OMG so much fun! My first glissading experience. Yeah!

Daylight held out as long as it could, but eventually twilight faded, covering us in darkness...making the hike out that much sweeter...under the watchful eye of the moon, the twinkling of the stars, in the company of friends.

Life is so good.  smile.gif
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yukon222
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Joined: 12 Mar 2007
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PostFri Jun 22, 2007 6:41 pm 
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The weather forecast was wrong, again.  Imagine that!!  Never a rain drop up there, instead we had low 60's and mostly sunny skies.  Quite the spread of refreshments layed out on top of the granite.  Hopefully, someone remembered to shoot a picture of it as I was too busy enjoying the food and scenery to snap a picture.

Chris organized a care package for Ranger Kelly who was staying overnight in the tower.  Kelly came out one last time to check up on us as we were heading down and to give Joseph one last goodbye hug.  I can't believe he left her up there!   shakehead.gif

Much better glissading down the snowfields in the twilight rather than dropping down thru the large boulders.  Here's a video link to Schmidt-ette heading down one of the stretches:


gathering-begins.jpg
gathering-begins.jpg
chris-delivers-the-goodies.jpg
chris-delivers-the-goodies.jpg
top-of-the-world.jpg
top-of-the-world.jpg
solstice-sunset.jpg
solstice-sunset.jpg
Schmidt-ette-&-Kaleetan.jpg
Schmidt-ette-&-Kaleetan.jpg
ranger-kelly.jpg
ranger-kelly.jpg
descent-from-granite-mtn.jpg
descent-from-granite-mtn.jpg
yet-glissade-debate.jpg
yet-glissade-debate.jpg
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Yet
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PostFri Jun 22, 2007 7:02 pm 
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OMG, watching that video of Tish is both fun and scary. Has she no fear??  crazy.gif
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yukon222
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PostFri Jun 22, 2007 7:06 pm 
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Yet wrote:
OMG, watching that video of Tish is both fun and scary. Has she no fear??  crazy.gif

Don't tell me you've already forgotten that this was the same jagged dangerous mountain face that you glissaded down just a few minutes later.  I'm pretty sure T was shooting video of you from down below while I took a couple of pictures of you.  Of course, you did it when it was even darker and more difficult to see!!   up.gif
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Huron
Custom title



Joined: 13 Sep 2004
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Huron
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PostFri Jun 22, 2007 7:22 pm 
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Great hike and great company!

TNAB Solstice on Granite Mountain
TNAB Solstice on Granite Mountain
TNAB Solstice on Granite Mountain
TNAB Solstice on Granite Mountain
TNAB Solstice on Granite Mountain
TNAB Solstice on Granite Mountain
TNAB Solstice on Granite Mountain
TNAB Solstice on Granite Mountain
TNAB Solstice on Granite Mountain
TNAB Solstice on Granite Mountain
Marmot
Marmot
TNAB Solstice on Granite Mountain
TNAB Solstice on Granite Mountain
Bear grass in bloom.
Bear grass in bloom.
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Schmidt Altitude
Whippet Entourage



Joined: 28 Mar 2007
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Schmidt Altitude
Whippet Entourage
PostFri Jun 22, 2007 7:30 pm 
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CHR15 wrote:
TNAB Solstice on Granite Mountain
TNAB Solstice on Granite Mountain

New Caption: "Ranger Kelly is up there and I'm coming for her!"

--------------
"Forest 101: These big wood stick things are called trees.  The big rocks are called mountains, and the little rocks are their babies."  Elliott from Open Season
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Yet
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PostFri Jun 22, 2007 7:32 pm 
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embarassedlaugh.gif...poor Joseph.

yukon, I must have deleted that part of the evening from my memory. Excitement overload! wink.gif
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Tread Well
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Tread Well
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PostFri Jun 22, 2007 8:43 pm 
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Think we had enough liquor?
The Granite Mountain Route
The Granite Mountain Route
The gangs all here
The gangs all here
Just another shity sunset
Just another shity sunset
Roughing it - NOT
Roughing it - NOT
High Class Operation
High Class Operation
I'd be smilling too
I'd be smilling too

I'm glad the snow slopes were there. Much easier to slide down the snow on my ass on than to stumble down the bolders on my knees.

Tread Well
Dave

--------------
Let's go for a walk.
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WildCelticRose
Oooh ! Shiny !



Joined: 06 Apr 2007
Posts: 242 | TRs
Location: Tacoma
WildCelticRose
Oooh ! Shiny !
PostFri Jun 22, 2007 8:56 pm 
The Butt Claw !!!
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That video is AWESOME !!!

That's the way to get down a mountain.

THIS is awesome.  It not only works as a snow shovel, but is great for quick, snowy descents...

I present to you, the "Butt Claw"  It will give you the fastest tush in the west...


Available of course, from REI...

http://www.rei.com/product/650213

I'm still bummed I can't make the TNAB hikes...

Maybe that will change....

~L

--------------
In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks.
John Muir
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Yet
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PostFri Jun 22, 2007 8:58 pm 
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Butt and claw in the same sentence sounds...wrong?
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WildCelticRose
Oooh ! Shiny !



Joined: 06 Apr 2007
Posts: 242 | TRs
Location: Tacoma
WildCelticRose
Oooh ! Shiny !
PostFri Jun 22, 2007 8:59 pm 
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I named it that.

It makes me giggle.

I dug my freind's car out with it and then used it to sled.

It's PERFECT !!!

--------------
In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks.
John Muir
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Schmidt Altitude
Whippet Entourage



Joined: 28 Mar 2007
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Schmidt Altitude
Whippet Entourage
PostFri Jun 22, 2007 9:52 pm 
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So very glad we didn't miss out on what had to be the funnest TNAB yet, Yet...?   clown.gif  It was hard to say what was the best part....the grueling climb up (to Tisha whose calves and bum were angry with her after Ruth  smackbum.gif), the smorgasbord of food, the outstanding variety of libations, terrific views, whippets trying to steal everyone's food, wonderful company, or the way down.....our vote for the glissade back down - hands down!!

View from the trail
View from the trail
Waterfall on trail
Waterfall on trail
Bear grass in bloom
Bear grass in bloom
Kiefer waits for Jeremy
Kiefer waits for Jeremy
Rowena's show pose
Rowena's show pose
Melawka valley (Kaleetan, Chair, and Bryant?)
Melawka valley (Kaleetan, Chair, and Bryant?)
Granite Mtn View
Granite Mtn View
Big Snow (?)
Big Snow (?)
Overcoat and Lemahs in the clouds, Mt Thompson in foreground
Overcoat and Lemahs in the clouds, Mt Thompson in foreground
Granite Mtn Lookout - home of Kelly's Butte
Granite Mtn Lookout - home of Kelly's Butte
Mt Rainier floats over the clouds
Mt Rainier floats over the clouds
Crystal, Cad, and Upper Tuscohatchie (Jeremy thinks Denny?)
Crystal, Cad, and Upper Tuscohatchie (Jeremy thinks Denny?)
Dig in, guys!
Dig in, guys!
Rowzilla about to destroy the lookout tower!!  Oh no, Kelly!!
Rowzilla about to destroy the lookout tower!!  Oh no, Kelly!!
Bombay advertisement (they should pay us for this! :lol::)
Bombay advertisement (they should pay us for this! lol.gif)
Sophisticated TNAB-er
Sophisticated TNAB-er
Group shot (minus Mark, Yet, and Tish)
Group shot (minus Mark, Yet, and Tish)
Kiefer applied eyeliner just for the solstice!
Kiefer applied eyeliner just for the solstice!
I call this one - "Blue Steel."
I call this one - "Blue Steel."
Yet's Margarita motivation
Yet's Margarita motivation
Was it worth it?
Was it worth it?
Yes, it was!
Yes, it was!
Mark double fists it!
Mark double fists it!
Who is daddy's little whippet?
Who is daddy's little whippet?
Packing up to head home
Packing up to head home
Sunset on Granite
Sunset on Granite
So ends the longest day of the year...
So ends the longest day of the year...

Now for the glissading fun.....

Yet's First Glissade of the Evening
End of Yukon's Glissade

Yet glissades
Yet glissades

Mark and Chris - not quite a glissade!

Yet heads down
Yet heads down
Yet glissading
Yet glissading
Watch out, Yet!
Watch out, Yet!
Yukon and Tish wipe out!
Yukon and Tish wipe out!

The best glissade of the evening:

Jeremy and Joseph Glissade
Yukon's Glissade
Chris M's Glissade
Yet's Outstanding Glissade!

--------------
"Forest 101: These big wood stick things are called trees.  The big rocks are called mountains, and the little rocks are their babies."  Elliott from Open Season
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Magellan
Brutally Handsome



Joined: 26 Jul 2006
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Magellan
Brutally Handsome
PostFri Jun 22, 2007 9:58 pm 
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Yet congratulations on your first glissade.  They only get better.  You guys are the bomb! up.gif
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Coasty
I like Salmon!



Joined: 02 Apr 2006
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Location: Kodiak, AK
Coasty
I like Salmon!
PostFri Jun 22, 2007 10:56 pm 
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I had a great trip with the you guys!!!!  Thanks for the warm welcome!  Too bad you couldn't make it Magellan.

Jason

--------------
http://www.BackpackGearTest.org
The Most Comprehensive Interactive Gear Reviews and Tests on the Planet!
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