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Monday, July 20, 2015

Mount Ralston

Yesterday I got an early start on my annual jaunt up Mt. Ralston.  I wanted to beat the afternoon thunder storms that have been occurring almost daily, but little did I know that I would completely avoid the crowds as well.  Just an hour from El Dorado Hills, you pick up the trail head across HWY 50 from Camp Sacramento.

The trail begins with a moderate climb but quickly transitions into a steep ascent with rewarding views of Sierra at Tahoe and Lover's Leap in Strawberry.



After resting to take in the views and tank up, I began the more challenging second segment to the peak.  The trail has a fork, so make sure to stay right for the most direct route to the summit.  The wild flowers were still in bloom but definitely a little past peak.  Nearing the top, you have to cross a boulder field so pick your way carefully as rocks can move.  I find my trekking poles an absolute necessity both going up and down the rocks and steep pitches.

2 hours exactly from bottom to top, the views are unmistakably Tahoe, with 360 views into Desolation Wilderness and Pyramid Peak


Echo Lake, Freel and Heavenly


...and of course Lake Tahoe, Fallen Leaf Lake and Mt. Tallac


After a strenuous 2 hour climb up, I was lucky enough to have this experience all to myself. Although it was only 1.5 hours down, my legs found it more difficult and I did run across multiple groups headed up.

I'll take the solitude and climb any day.  You too?, then get an early start!

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