Wednesday, June 30, 2004

Cradle Lake 6.30.04

I was hoping for a epic overnight trip, I wanted to camp at Cradle Lake and return over Highchair and Bootjack Mts.. I, as usual arrived at the Jack Creek trailhead much later than I would have liked. I pushed off a little after one and made good time to the crossing of Jack Creek. I passed one man on the way with very little idea of where he was or where he was going. It is quite amazing the lack of planning most people use when in the mountains. The Jack Creek crossing was manageable but great care was needed. I first crossed with the Beagle and then returned for my pack. I had to laugh when I picked up my pack and the Beagle was already there. I was so focused on the crossing I didn't have a clue how he had crossed. I figured since he made it one way he should be able to make again. What a trooper! watching him tempt the rapids with those little legs made the whole trip worthwhile. I rebooted and was off, unlucky for me the trail crosses Meadow Creek contrary to my map. This crossing was deeper and much swifter so I again carried the Beagle to the other side. I found the Cradle Lake trail without any problems. Since I had got such a late start, all day I was planning on camping here. I had good legs today and enough time to make the 20000ft climb to Cradle Lake. The trail was in great shape and easy to follow. I passed a junction at 5400ft that connects with the Blackjack Ridge trail and another junction at 5900ft which must go to Highchair mt. Both these trails were not on my map either. I made it to camp at 6:20 and enjoyed some very nice views. Later I scrambled up Pt 6623 and was rewarded with a beautiful sunset behind The Cradle. The moon was out and shining bright until it was obscured by rain clouds. I got a slight drizzle to help put me to sleep. I abandoned any other climbing due to lack of time. I returned to the truck in a little less than 4 hours

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