Thursday, September 12, 2019

Tahoe Rim Trail/PCT and Iron Maiden

Continuing my circumnavigation of Lake Tahoe on the Tahoe Rim Trail, this weekend I went in at Bayview TH above Emerald Bay, and came out at Glen Alpine. I hadn't done a piece since last summer when I went from Kingsbury North to Spooner Summit. This was the most spectacular piece I've hiked so far, granite and forests and meadows and lakes and wildflowers - unsurprisingly, since the second best segment is immediately adjacent. It also featured the maturely named Dick's Lake, Dick's Pass, and Dick's Peak. (Not to be confused with Bloody Dick Peak in Montana.) Read on for pictures of Dick's Peak thrusting skyward. After this past big winter, no surprise that there is still some snow at the higher elevations even in September.

Emerald Bay below with Lake Tahoe in the background.

Far to the northeast I could just barely make out a smoke layer from the fires burning near Red Bluff.

Snow plant, appearing quite late this year.

Above: tee hee! Below, the climb up to the pass begins.

Come on guys.

Above: it's not a real weekend unless you get to the snowline, or at least 10,000'. Next few pictures: Dick's Pass probably just melted out as of early September, hence the barrenness, and just two days after I was up there, it got its first snow of the new season.

Above: a closeup reveals the clarity of - I think Dick's Lake, but there are so many lakes back there. Below, I had been telling myself there would be few wildflowers this late in the year, but descending from Dick's Pass toward Glen Alpine I discovered that I was quite wrong. The meadows were just breathtaking, like the way children draw pictures of heaven. I have the feeling I've used that metaphor before, but there are many places in the Sierras where it applies.

Above: I believe this is Pyramid Peak, which is approached by an unofficial trail that comes up from the 50, is not fun at all, and is an ugly rubble pile at the summit. Not recommended. Looking at it from far away like this is the best way to experience it.

On the way back I saw Iron Maiden with Mr. Black* in Sacramento - the second time I've seen them, and for a bunch of sixty-plus year olds they show absolutely no sign of slowing down.

*Why do I have to be Mr. Pink?