It's a beautiful, blustery morning up top. The high yesterday reached 44 degrees. The overnight 'low' was 34 degrees. It was 44 degrees and cloudy at 7am observation. The mountain received .37" of rain yesterday and there is no snow remaining up top. There is very little ice remaining on the trails... I had a relatively easy time coming up Alum in my trail runners yesterday with no traction. Yesterday was the busiest weekday I've seen in the Park all season, get out and enjoy it!
I had a wonderful time coming up yesterday afternoon. There is really nothing like this extended fall in the Park - it's just warm enough to wear running shorts and a t-shirt if you're moving consistently and the wet woods give off a new aroma with seemingly every step. With the warmers temperatures, there's no real risk of the immediate discomfort that comes with real winter conditions. While I miss the newness that a fresh coat of snow brings, there is no shortage of wonders if you keep your eyes open. There were Peregrines flying at Cliff Tops (I've only seen them on warm February days in the past)... and everyone was too distracted by their cell phones and companions to look up. I wanted to make a public service announcement and tell them that the fastest bird in North America was screaming 50 feet above their heads, but to each their own. The clouds and hemlocks kept me company for the rest of my hike.
In more somber news, two children lost their mother and the wilderness lost a great friend this week. Kayah fought for the places we love and if you have the means, I'd appreciate it if you folks would take a look at this website and make a contribution for Kayah's kids Caleb and River. Thanks in advance for your generosity.