2011/5/30 – Mount Teneriffe III / 坦納利弗山之三

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Kodak moment on Mount Teneriffe
Kodak moment on Mount Teneriffe

Photos from this trip can be found here.

Today marked the one-year anniversary of my goal to hike once a week, so it was a special hike. The journey began a year ago on the hike to Mount Washington  with the black pup. I look forward to another year of onehikeaweek!

The boys had since been on every hike with me, except the ones I thought were too strenuous or technical to bring them. So far they’ve enjoyed the freedom of hiking and running around carefreely.

Original plan for today was Green Mountain, since I had already done Teneriffe twice, including one unsuccessful attempt. However, I wasn’t able to find recent reports on Green Mountain.

So instead I followed Google Maps to the trailhead by taking Middle Fork Road (NF-5060), going counterclockwise, and connecting with 9010-1. I wonder why Google Maps didn’t show Mount Si Road as an alternate route option.

Anyhow, the gate at the 5060/9010-1 junction, five miles beyond the Mailbox Peak trailhead, was closed. Unless I was willing to bushwhack after crossing the bridge past Granite Creek, I saw no other ways of crossing the Middle Fork Snoqualmie River.

I scratched the plan and turned around to Mount Teneriffe trailhead. A trip report posted the day before indicated that the snow was fairly packed, no need for flotation device. I left snowshoes in the car and packed just the microspikes.

I didn’t realize how unpredictable weather west of the Cascades could be until I started hiking three years ago. Forecast was mostly cloudy, which meant the sun would maybe show up at some point.

It ended up being mostly cloudy with a high precipitation rate, so I did not expect to see the sun at all during our hike. There were five other vehicles when I pulled into the parking area.

The service road was uneventful as per usual, we walked and took pictures whenever possible. It had started to drizzle soon after we started hiking and it stayed like that the entire way.

Snow finally showed up at around 3,300’, just before the Mount Si/Mount Teneriffe trail junction. Quarter of a mile after passing the junction, a group of three were just getting ready to head back down after turning around half a mile ahead in fear of post holing to the top. We spoke for a few minutes and the dogs and I continued on.

Five minutes later I met another party of two who had gone to the top and back. They said it was totally doable without snowshoes and that got me pretty psyched about finishing the hike.

There was a clear footpath on the ridge, all the way through the dense forest and to the top. There was no need to look for red flagging like I did the time before minus the snow, and that made the climb much easier and more enjoyable.

We didn’t stay at the top long because there was nothing to see with the mountain submerged in thick clouds. The dogs ate and I took some pictures, then we headed back down. We didn’t see anyone else on the trail until a biker passing us about one mile in from the trailhead.

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