Monday, September 3, 2007

Labor Day Hike in the Wyoming Tetons

Table Rock is on the western side of the Teton Range, on far right. This was shot about nine or ten on the way up, facing the sun. Grand Teton is in the center right.

Looking down about two thousand feet below the summit--the flat farmlands of the Teton Valley below. The towns of Alta, Wyoming and Driggs, Idaho are just behind the mountain at center, about ten miles away.

Table Rock at center, above a rock field and a small but dazzling meadow of yellow grasses. Grand Teton just visible to the left of Table Rock. The summit is about fifty yards long and ten yards across. The last mile feels like it is straight up.

Today I went for a hike up Table Rock in the Grand Tetons. This 11,100 foot peak is accessed from the western side of the Tetons. It has a vertical gain of over 4,000 feet and when you get up to 11,000 feet I imagine people from the East or West coast are sucking serious air. The hike was over about 13.5 miles round-trip.

A small glacial lake several thousand feet below the summit. I think is is Solitude Lake.

I left Ammon, Idaho at 5:30 in the morning, started climbing a little after seven in the morning, summited about eleven or so, sat on top long enough to rest up, and went back down. Beautiful day, maybe a hundred people on the trail that I saw altogether in seven or eight hours. The oldest looked about eighty and the youngest less than one. And for the first time in three hikes, I did not see a bear, and this was just fine by me.

Even gimpy-kneed old guys can still make it to the top if they take their time.

Looking east, you can see the Jackson Hole Valley below the Tetons. This is from the summit.

A last look through the trees about four miles below. You can still see Table Rock in the center.

Table Rock looks like a giant doorknob. It is a little lower than the Grand Teton but so close you can see climbers on it. Below the summit I saw glacial lakes and craggy rocks. A good way to spend Labor Day. It took me almost as long to figure out my photo program after I got back, despite the fact that I've used it before. I must be losing my grip in my old age.
This flower had bloomed and was sending out parachute-like seeds into the sky.

1 comment:

Richard Havers said...

Now that's what I call hiking!