Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Middle and Main Tiger 1.14.13

  I didn't have alot of time so I stayed close to home with the intent of getting some elevation and miles in. I have been up both of these peaks numerous times in the last few months but with the conditions ever changing it was still a worthy trip. I parked on Tiger Mountain Road and made my way up the West Tiger Road until I reached the Middle Tiger Trailhead about a mile in. The trail was mostly snow free on it's lower reaches. I think this trail is my favorite of all the West side trails because it really doesn't mess around with the elevation gain. Soon the snow got deeper but the track was worn... mostly my steps from my 3 other recent visits. Once cresting Middle Tiger the snow deepened consiiderably. It also seemed 10 degrees warmer than it was when I started. I am guessing with the recent weather we will soon see some strong inversions and poor quality air in the lowlands. The trail down was a bit slick with a dusting of snow over mostly packed snow. In short order I reached the end of the trail than connects with a spur road that reaches the Main Tiger Mt. Road.
   This portion was very annoying. I was able to see my bootprints from last week but the wind and filled my tracks with snow. I found easier going to stay on the untracked snow. The trees all laden with snow were bent over the road making for tedious travel. Once I thankfully reached the mainline the road was packed. I had intended on continuing on to Weat Tiger and West Tiger 2 before closing my loop. I instead headed towards the East Tiger ( main summit). The going was much quicker on the packed road.  I reached the mountain biking trail that meanders it's way to East Tiger. I grew weary of this trail so I left for an initially more direct line to the summit. I did spend some time wandering through a minelfield of blowdowns covered with snow.  Once again I rejoined  a road and decided to stay on this to the summit instead of staying on the trail.
   After a brief stay I retraced my steps. I didn't have enough time to continue on my planned loop so I continued on back towards Middle Tiger. Again going through this portion was not exactly fun but soon I found myself on the Middle Tiger Trail for the short climb back to the summit. The balance of the descent went quickly and I did make it back home in time for my appointment.
Approx 10 miles 3000' of climb 4:15 car to car.
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