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Pine Creek to Pine Creek Pass, Royce Lakes, and Merriam Peak

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Pine Creek to Pine Creek Pass, Royce Lakes, and Merriam Peak

Postby KathyW » Sun Sep 14, 2014 5:14 pm

We did Royce back in August 2007, but did not go on to Merriam because the wind was blowing really hard; so I decided to go back and do Merriam on Friday/Saturday. Back in 2007 we were able to skirt around the snow on the way to the Merriam-Royce Saddle, but yesterday I would have had to go out of my way to step on the little bit of icy snow that was still there. The rain over the last month has helped, but it is still dry out there.

Friday: I didn't get an early start and it was 9:37am when I started hiking up the Pine Creek Trail. Back in 2007 that was a nice trail, but they've installed tons of steps on the trail since then. It seems like there are even steps on the flat sections; so it's a tougher hike than it use to be. I thought I was going to overheat with such a late start, but it turned out to be beautiful weather with a nice breeze just when I needed it. I hiked to Pine Creek Pass on the trail and then headed over to Royce Lake 11656' to camp. I made it in time to set up my tent, get some water, and cook a little dinner before it got dark. Fall is in the air - the 30 degree bag was just warm enough with down booties on my feet and a lightweight down jacket on.

Saturday: I headed up to the Merriam-Royce Saddle and on to the summit of Merriam Peak. This was a relatively easy trek, but I always move very slow once I get above 10,000'; so it took a while. The views were very nice from the summit. After taking some photos at the summit, I headed back to camp, packed up, and headed back out to the trailhead.

I had given some thought to doing this as a day hike, but I'm glad I didn't because it was a lot more enjoyable as an overnighter. Besides, I probably would have spent a ton of time in the dark if I made it at all trying to day hike it.

Some photos and a map of my route: http://kathywing.smugmug.com/California ... eak-91314/



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KathyW
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Re: Pine Creek to Pine Creek Pass, Royce Lakes, and Merriam Peak

Postby sekihiker » Sat Sep 20, 2014 10:54 am

Great photos, as usual. It must feel good to be able to get out again.
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Re: Pine Creek to Pine Creek Pass, Royce Lakes, and Merriam Peak

Postby Herm » Sat Sep 20, 2014 3:52 pm

KathyW;

Thanks for sharing! I really enjoyed viewing your photos, showing off a beautiful area. Especially nice were the clouds to add depth and contrast.

Herm
I am not in a hurry, so don't be hasty.
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