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Trap Dike with my Son (and
some other stuff) Trap Dike with my Son (and some other stuff)  by Autoxfil

This has been a very special summer for me. My oldest (Noah) is now 7, and he’s turning into quite the outdoors enthusiast. We’ve done a bunch of day trips, but this was the first summer that I took him up to our place in the Daks for a weekend without his mom coming along as well. When he was 5, our whole family went for the week, and Noah and I did the Kilburn/Monument slide. Then in 2015 I stuck with local day trips. But 2016 was our summer for the Daks.

Our first trip was Chapel Pond Slab. We took his uncle, to provide me with a belay, and I allotted all day. We got an early start to miss the chance of afternoon storms, but I didn’t need to worry – Noah literally ran up the slab and we were back at the car by 10am.

to Sill Traverse 2016 Thunderbolt to Sill Traverse 2016  by Greenman

It has been suggested that this route can be done in a car-to-car day trip. Beware the sandbagger. In truth, a car-to-car attempt at T-bolt to Sill is only for extremely talented and über-fit athletes who have no problem soloing 5th-class. Even those climbers who attempt the traverse in a day from a base camp high up next to the Palisade Glacier often have to exit the ridge before completing the whole traverse. The trip reports tell the real story. I knew that the traverse-in-a-day style was out of reach for me, so I sought an alternative. I got some good beta by checking out what the guide services offer: a four-day trek with two nights at base camp and one night at 14,000 feet below the summit of North Pal. (Sierra Mountain Guides website: (http://www.sierramtnguides.com/program/palisades-traverse-thunderbolt-to-sill/). This is the slow-but-steady approach; one which requires a larger climbing pack but carries a greater chance of success.

Kings Peak Day Hike 2016 Kings Peak Day Hike 2016  by Diesel

I didn't think to be of much help writing a trip report about this hike until I finished it. My research for hiking Kings Peak (13,528 ft/ 4,123 m elevation) resulted in a lot of very worrisome information about the difficulty, route finding and temperamental weather. What I came to discover myself was that most of the info I read about the hike was mostly written by hikers that had some kind of difficulty hiking it. I reckon that the folks that hiked Kings Peak without incident didn't really bother to document their hike.

I had only one wish: to hike car to car under 11 hours. I fulfilled my wish; I hiked car to car in 10 hours and 41 minutes. The total distance was exactly 25 miles. My initial target was to finish the hike under 12 hours. However, once I read here on Summit Post a trip report of someone bragging of finishing the hike in 11 hours and 15 minutes, I really wanted to beat that guy's time. A little self-inflicted motivation is always good.

Land O'Lakes - Northeast
Ridge Land O'Lakes - Northeast Ridge  by Rocky Alps

The end of summer snuck up on me quickly, so the first significant snowfall of the season forced me to make some changes to my original hiking plans. David and I were finally able to settle on a day for a summit hike in the Tetons, but a larger-than expected early season snow storm prompted us to look farther south. Hayden Peak in the Uintas seemed the obvious choice for a fun day hike scramble that we had not yet done, but with mountain-forecast.com predicting unmelted snow there as well and us not wanting to scramble over icy terrain, we decided that Mount Watson would have to suffice as the back-up to our back-up plan if Hayden still looked iced over on the morning of our hike.

Matterhorn (Solo) Hornli
Ridge Matterhorn (Solo) Hornli Ridge  by hunterslee

Returning to Zermatt to climb the Matterhorn had been in the back of my mind since my first trip to Europe in 2010. On that occasion we had good luck in France and Italy, but unfortunately when we rolled into Zermatt the Matterhorn had just received a sizeable dumping of snow- thus a side trip up the Briethorn and a couple nights of drinking ensued in Zermatt before leaving town with thoughts of what could have been.

After that first trip to Europe I'll admit my desires to go back and climb there were mixed- the terrain and views are great, as is the selection of classic climbs, but the crowded routes and sometimes overstepping guides on them didn't cast a friendly vibe in the alpine. Knowing full well that this route was busy I mentally prepared myself for what might be a gong show once the door opened up at 5:20AM at the Horlni hut.

Goat Rocks - Peak Bagging
and Goats (Of Course) Goat Rocks - Peak Bagging and Goats (Of Course)  by awilsondc

It had been over a decade since I last went backpacking with my Dad. After nine years living on a sailboat he was back on the main land and wanted to spend a couple nights in the wilderness. Looking for some relatively easier options I came up with a trip to the Goat Rocks. It had also been over a decade since I last visited the Goat Rocks so it seemed be fitting to take my Dad there for his first night in the back-country in many years. We originally planned the trip around Labor Day, but the forecast deteriorated rapidly as the time drew near so we decided to delay the trip two weeks. It couldn't have worked out much better. We had nearly perfect weather forecast and on the morning of September 15th, 2016 I met my Dad at the Berry Patch trailhead at around 7:50. By 8am we were hiking up the Goat Ridge trail!

President and Vice President The President and Vice President  by connoryoung

I could not have asked for a better objective, better weather, or better company for my final trip in the Canadian Rockies. The climbing was easy and incredibly aesthetic, but required quite a bit of terrain management, the weather was bluebird with just a few clouds at night to make for a gorgeous sunset, and many laughs were shared with the whole group. Cameron, Thomas and Tiffany have been some of my most reliable and capable partners all season, so getting to introduce them all to each other and to have them all join me for this last climb was a real treat. The President Glacier is quite broken up with some enormous crevasses lurking around. After last week's snow, the cool overnight temperatures, and warm days, I figured the Presidents would be in fantastic shape. I had seen a report from a friend from a week prior when it was snowing and after talking to him, I settled on these two peaks as my final objective. Thomas, Cameron and Tiff were very easy to convince to join. We all knew the weather was supposed to be fantastic and we had plenty of time to slow down and enjoy this one. This was especially important to me on this trip because it feels like all my big objectives this summer have been somewhat rushed. The typical scenario is hiking hard and fast to a bivy site, getting there just before dark, sleeping for 3 hours, then climbing, packing, deproaching and driving home all on the second day. The Presidents on the other hand, have an easy approach and could be done in one day push but we were giving ourselves two.

Pool Hike and My Pinnacle Pool Hike and My "Discovery" of a Rock Glacier  by nader

The 12810 ft (3904 m) high Howard Mountain sits in the Never Summer Range in the western parts of Colorado’s Rocky Mountain National Park. It is usually climbed either from the northeast or via a ridge-top hike in combination with the peaks to the north and south of it. I approached Howard Mountain from the southeast by whacking my way through a forest to reach a 11300 ft high lake known as Pinnacle Pool. Above the pool I entered a large boulder filled valley where the boulders made small ridgelines/hills at the bottom of the valley. These features led me to believe that I was walking on a rock glacier. The bushwhack and boulder hopping became very time consuming so I gave up on reaching the summit of Howard Mountain and turned back at an elevation of 11500 ft. I was unhappy that I did not make it to the top but was happy that I had “discovered” a rock glacier.

Fear and Loathing Back West:
Pain & Glory Fear and Loathing Back West: Pain & Glory  by Castlereagh

After three long years out west I came home. I spent some time back in Massachusetts, catching up with family and friends, getting (way too) reacquainted with sleeping in, did some freelance jobs for a paycheck, enjoyed the holidays, and turned 30 (that last part really sucked). Around that unfortunate birthday I finally finished my freelance projects and started looking for a job in Jersey so I could move in with my roommate by the time his lease ended in April. Job found and started, my thoughts eventually turned back towards summer and making a trip back west. My body, which felt great after two plus months of rehabbing a car/pedestrian incident via crippled peakbagging, seemed to collapse shortly after I came home. I threw out my back through merely the act of sleep, my hips, glutes and groin constantly felt like s***, and my body felt creaky as hell even just taking my friends' dog out for an hour long walk. My pedestrian/auto collision in Savannah probably had a bit to do with it, as did my unconventional rehab climbing off the MCL sprain/contusion for the next few months...

Four Gables via Desolation
Lake Four Gables via Desolation Lake  by Ambret

After a few nights at Four Jeffrey Campground and a warm-up hike circumnavigating and summiting Chocolate Peak off of the Bishop Pass trail, our group—Ruvicha, Brian, Steve2 and I—prepared to head for Desolation Lake via the Piute Pass, with the goal of climbing Four Gables Peak. Three of us previously had camped at Horton Lake; Four Gables, along with Mt Tom and Basin Mountain, forms something of a triangle around the lake. From our lakeside campsite, we enjoyed the early morning alpenglow on Four Gables and wanted the view from its summit. Visiting Desolation Lake on the way seemed an added bonus.

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