Thursday, June 19, 2014

My first trip up Mount McLoughlin in 2014

Yesterday I went out to summit Mt. Mcloughlin for my first time this year. To get to the summit you climb about 4,000 vertical feet in just over 5 miles. It's a great place to practice both technical uphill and downhill running. And the views don't suck either.Last year my PR from the trailhead to the summit was 01:12. But the trail has changed a a bit. There are more loose rocks and downed trees, plus my legs were a little tired from my 20 miler on the rogue the day before, so it took me 01:30 to summit. 
On the way down I did precisely what I thought only inexperienced hikers do on Mcloughlin; I got lost on the scree field to the right of the ridgeline  instead of following the ridgeline to the left. Luckily I'm smart enough to back track instead of continuing on in the wrong direction. I'm also in good enough shape to be able to run back up the mountain in a short amount of time. So that's what I did. I saw a few guys down the ridgeline on the actual trail and caught up with them until I got back on course. This added a little over an hour to my trip, but it was all well worth it. Another beautiful day on the trails!

McLoughlin from a distance

Loose rock on the trail

The snow is almost gone

Heading up the ridgeline towards the summit

The view

The last 100ft to the summit, steeper than it looks


Instead of following the ridgeline from whence I came, like a smart mountain runner, I took the scree field to the right.


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