April Mary’s Peak Ramble

Hiking season started today with a quick trip to Mary’s Peak for another test of the new backpack. Weather was suggesting temperatures above 70. Driving toward the trailhead, the sunrise over the valley farms and hills …

Past this farm and much nearer to the foothills of the coast range, per my car, outdoor temperature was 35. At the trailhead (around 2500 ft elevation), the temp was 50. The air was perfectly layered by temperature, cold on the bottom as there was absolutely 0 wind. A house burning wood highlights same

The hike started at Conners Trailhead and up the East Ridge trail to the summit. At the TH, sunrise with one other car

At the top the first time, another party had been up at a picnic table for an hour watching sunrise. The views were not that spectacular with some haze. A bit of snow hung in the north side shadows as well. The first / large pic shows a swath of clear-cut forest. This area has been farmed, and is continued to be farmed, in a most destructive manner it seems … isn’t there a better way to provide building materials and paper?

After leaving the top, I went down the East Ridge trail to the Tie Trail and back up to the top via the East Ridge like earlier. After a quick snack on the top, where I shared the top with a person who walked bare-foot the entire North Ridge trail to the top, I headed down North Ridge until my time-box boundary. Turned around at some random spot and used the Tie Trail back to Conners TH.

The new wildflowers at the lower elevations were just starting to pop but at higher elevations nothing yet.

I was back to the car around 2pm after starting at 7am. Backpack weighed 29.2 lbs without camera, containing gear for wet weather and 4 nights of food. Weather was perfect, people few and following good trail etiquette. Mary’s Peak is one of those weird hills like Mt Washington in NH with parking lots at or near the top – avoid on weekends or summer, but …

… A good early or late season hike for above valley elevation hiking – several options for loops / rambles but can be crowded at top with non-hikers.

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