It's an impressively stormy day up top. The high yesterday reached 52 degrees. The low only reached 46 degrees. It was 51 degrees and drizzling at 7am observation. The mountain received .81" of rain yesterday, starting in the afternoon and continuing overnight. I went up & down Alum yesterday and found the trails were in great shape. They'll be a bit wet today, but there's no ice. I was able to hike in sneakers the whole way.
The advancing rainstorm yesterday gave my hike a sense of urgency. Although I generally mosey along at a pace that could hardly be described as strenuous, it's a fun diversion to race myself up the mountain every once in a while. I never deliberately do it, but not getting drenched is as good a motivation as any. I read in the Hiking Trails to Mt. LeConte pamphlet that the record ascent is 45 minutes... which is truly humbling. If you acknowledge that a bit of vanity is involved with any 'race' and get over that, it produces a totally different kind of hike. You're more inwardly focused, noticing how your footfalls drop, how deep and efficient your breaths are, how to make your posture more ideal to avoid aches and pains. With that kind of focus, laser mode, whatever you want to call it, your brain definitely approaches a different plane. Time zips by and before you know it, you are where you began.
In other news, the Mt. LeConte shelter has been closed by the Park Service until further notice. This is due to an aggressive bear who was able to get food from hikers last Saturday night and is still active on the mountain. The hope is that once the mountain ash berries and temperatures drop, he'll den up for the season. This is a prudent decision made in the best interest of the bear. The less access he has to human food, the better for his long term health. Thank you for understanding.
Welcome to the official blog of LeConte Lodge. We hope you find the information provided here both helpful and enjoyable. Thank you for visiting the site, and we hope to see you on the mountain!