Erika and Orion and I met at 4:30 at Erika's place in Kirkland on Wednesday morning. Fortified with caffeinated beverages, we drove to Leavenworth to pick up our camping permits and get some breakfast. After that, we made for the trailhead.
We booted up and hefted our massive packs, then started on the trail.
After a short descent to Icicle Creek, the switchbacks began.
Ocassionally, we encountered hikers heading down to the trailhead, who offered us words of encouragement, usually relating to how spectacular the destination would be when we got there.
We also met some mountain goats on the way.
After pausing to photograph the pair, we continued onward. We stopped for a light lunch at Nada Lake, and spent some time being entertained by the camp robbers, and photographing the mountains and the lake.
Looming over Nada Lake are the Temple and Prusik Peak. The more distant Prusik Peak marks the entrance to our destination. We have a long way to go yet.
The combination of the arduous and unrelenting climb, distance, and weight of our packs forced us to rest for the night at Upper Snow Lake.
So far, we have hiked 7.5 miles and gained approximately 4000 feet of elevation.
After enjoying the spectacle of the rising sun over Upper Snow Lake the following morning, we began the next stage of our journey.
To be continued...