This hike was a followup I had done with Cameron earlier on after the last snowfall back in May....
This time a lot less snow as most have melted, but still lots of snow patches left, including large cornice remnants.
Ziff, Blair, and I met at 7:45 am in the Bromley's parking lot, and from there drove to the Excelsior trailhead We geared up and started around 9:05 am and returned about 4:15 pm; our time included 1/2 hour for lunch plus a few other small breaks for drinks and snacks. Trip gps shows 21 km return with net elevation gain of 1250 meters
This was one of those days where we had to frequently adjust our clothing layers as temperatures varied from warm to cool and back to warm. A few rain showers and sunny periods added to the weather variety.
Time for the hike portion from trailhead to top of ridge where we found the trail cross roads was completed in about 2-1/4 hours for 7 km with 1050 meters of elevation gain.
From the trail cross roads, Blair used his ice-axe to get to gain Excelsior's Summit, while Ziff and and I started the ridge walk westward. Due to initial fog and very poor visibility was almost ended our trip after we gained the ridge; then the sun came out and encouraged us to proceed.
Heading from Trail Head to just before the ridge, and cross roads:
**Few minutes onto the trail
** Waterfall: water flowing down on flat rock
***Trail as we go on up..... through forest and through upper meadows...
Slope to the right, plateau area where Cameron and I ascended back in May.
The Cross Roads, all snowy and white: this is where trail follows the ridge, left or right, and also heads north and down to Damfino Lakes TH.
START of the West Ridge, west of Excelsior Summit.
Pretty flowery meadows to start...
Look back east to Excelsior Summit, note the snow patches...
Continue westward along ridge; flowery meadows and snow patches (include cornice remnants)
Steep slope up a ridge section involve a little scrambling, which was the end point and we turned back...
Full view of the ridge we hiked, plus flowers at this high point.
East side of Ridge Section we topped at:
Our walk back along the ridge........enjoying the flowers; and the length and breadth of the ridge. with its capping of snow banks and cornice remnants.
Flowers under the tree, and flocs closeup.
Bearpaw Mountain to the north......plan for 2018.
Yellow flowers closeup, and then lush meadow with views looking to the south.
Long ridge, views eastward as we hike back...
GPS Track on USD Topog map frame...