Rockfall danger was bad. We dodged several falling boulders. I watched one tombstone at my friend. I yelled a warning and John quickly dodged it. It rolled between his legs! Freaky!
The summit push was tough, steep and somewhat exposed. We had to climb on all fours, clawing and crawling our way up a loose pumice gravel field that slowly avalanched as we moved. Fernie, the Swedish hound dog, had the advantage here going straight up on all fours. But we had to carry her up some steep boulder fields. Twelve year old dog. She made it, no problem. And she ate my Cliff Bar when my back was turned!
It was so windy at the summit. Blasting lava dust in our eyes. Almost unbearable, but so awesome to be there. To shoot photos, hold steady on a rock. It was cold, my hands were numb. I was getting drilled in the face by dust. Impressed the photos came out so good, but it’s true, film cameras are tough. The night was coming and we had to hustle, but the windy sunset skies were so spectacular we kept stopping and awe-ing. The brilliant alpenglow lasted a few minutes. Pink, orange and red glowed off the summit.
Darkness fell and we nearly lost the trail. Two more hours we swiftly walked under fragrant pines and twinkling stars. It was so much warmer and drier down here at the bottom. The trail was never ending; are we lost?
No, the trail opened up and we were home.
What an amazing day!