Yesterday after a great conference call with a client Molly and I decided to celebrate with a quick afternoon hike up to the Loch in RMNP. The weather here has been pretty fantastic. Yesterday it was sunny, calm and in the low 60's. Perfect weather for a little hike.
We busted out after lunch and left the TH around 12:45. We didn't know what the trail would be like so we packed our ice axes and crampons. I was secretly hoping to find a nice snow gully to climb but it did not come to pass.
Here is a shot of Molly gearing up at the Glacier Gorge TH. It was strange to see this lot so empty on a nice afternoon. To get a spot here during the summer you either have to be lucky or early.
The trail was about 80% snow covered. Unfortunately, the snow was hard packed and slick, making progress somewhat slow. This was also my first hike of the season in actual boots. I have been wearing my Inov8 trail running shoes almost exclusively while hiking. But because of the possibility of deep snow and/or strapping on crampons we had to switch to heavy stiff boots. Oh how my feet longed for the soft comfort of my tennies!
We quickly passed Albera Falls, which was nearly completely frozen and silent, and made it to the Loch by about 2:30. I think we only met 5 other people out there.
We walked down to the far end of the Loch and shot some pics. We considered hiking up to Andrews Glacier but ended up heading down because it was getting close to our turn-around time of 3. Here are some shots around the Loch.
The hike out took a little over an hour. By the end my feet were aching and I was tired of slipping on hard snow. Plus the temps were falling. By the time we got to the truck, it was probably in the 30's.