Granite Mountain Lookout – June 20, 2012

Posted on Wednesday, June 20th, 2012 at 11:37 pm

I finished early enough to close down my computer and make the most of the early afternoon.  I still had to be back by 5p to pick up my kids, so that meant staying close to I90 – as usual.  On a day like this, with azure blue skies scattering wispy white flames across every peak, I couldn’t think of a better bang for the buck than a trip up to the lookout.  I also knew the TNABers were going up tomorrow, so I could provide some reconnaissance.

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I was at the Pratt Lake TH by noon and on my way by 10 after.  I had to move fast because the traffic has been, well, horrendous.  I was at the first gully in under 30 minutes where I decided to go straight up the climbers path.  Once above the trees, I angled over to the right shoulder of the gully opposite a lingering snow finger.  Once on the shoulder, the climbers path is easy to follow, and I angled slightly left for some fun boulder hopping, and headed straight for the lookout.  I avoided the snow until I was literally 100 feet from the lookout, where I merged with the standard snow route, just to the right of the lookout.  It only took me another 40 minutes from where I entered the gully.  I was at the lookout around 1:20p, where I enjoyed a stiff breeze, which did a great job of cooling me down after a hard push.

I dawdled a bit, and even contemplated heading over to Tusk-O-Granite, but did not want to risk it due to time constraints.  This was fine with me as I whipped out the iPhone and took some pictures, and just relaxed.  I must have stayed up there an hour.  I took the standard snow route down the SE ridge on the way back, and enjoyed some fantastic glissades.  No punch-throughs to worry about, but be careful in the usual spots as the snow is melting quickly now.  The regular summer trail is visible around 4500 feet, just before it turns south…Enjoy…

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