Success...Say no more, but its up to you to read the report....
Started from Cranberry Lake at 3:30 AM for a High Peaks sunrise atop Cascade with Rachael and her cousin Jess. Too bad we didn't get out the door til 4:30, and as we drove down Route 3, I slowly watched the sun come up and my speed increase to 90. But it was no big deal when we reached Placid, as the sun broke the horizon over the Great Range and MacIntyres.
The morning had an Adirondack briskness to the morning air, and we were prepared for that. What I wasn't prepared for was the lethargy in my legs and endurance this morning. I was sweating miserably 200 ft past the trail head, huffing and puffing most of the hike up. It didn't help that I was behind Jess who continued polluting the air in front of me with the gas of a parade mule. I thought the trail was clear of travelers due to the early hour...in retrospect I know the truth. The hike up was very uneventful and I started feeling better by the time I reached the Porter junction. As I saw the rock leading to the Cascade summit, I felt fantastic and ran to the top, and that feeling didn't subside until coming back to Rochester 4 days later. Marking the geo marker with a 2 for Rachael and my 2nd of 46, we posed for pics and snacked on a few protein bars.
The morning couldn't have been a better summer solstice in the ADKs...pillowed clouds in a misty blue 7:30 AM sky with views for miles. Absolute perfection. Jess was ecstatic to reach her first High Peak, Rachael and I were elated to have finally reached the summit of the "easiest" peak of the 46, despite the previous two failures.
We quickly started heading down to nab Porter and work our way out for a breakfast celebratory beer before heading back to Cranberry Lake for a day of family events.
Porter was a bit of a let down, but the views were still pretty good, the hike to the summit was pretty uneventful. But for Jess's 2nd peak and mine and Rachaels third, it was easy and felt great to feel the list getting shorter. We hung out for a bit considering heading down to the Garden just for a longer hike, but figured we should just head back down so we didn't have to figure out a ride back to the 73 trailhead.
Coming down the trail we saw a lot of people calling us the "early risers." We briefly joked about making a run up Giant and Rocky Ridge, but Jess's shoulder was acting up from her messenger bag styled camera bag, and Rachaels' knee was a bit tender. We just figured another trip another day.
Placid has no place to get a beer before 11AM, so we went back to the Brewery later that evening for our drink.....