This was a great hike with a few friends. We passed through some intense rain showers on the way to the trailhead, but it was calm when we arrived. About halfway up the mountain it started to precipitate in the form of small balls of ice. It got harder and harder the further up the mountain we got. At the top we were dissapointed to find the fire lookout locked, as we thought it would be a great place to eat lunch; out of the elements at least, even though there was no view to speak of. We found a semi-less-wet spot under some pine trees to eat lunch. We packed up when we started getting cold. I was surprised to see that the snow was really sticking to the ground; the amount of snow had nearly quadrupled in the short amount of time we spent on the top. The descent was slippery, but near the meadow, the sun came out and the snow started melting quickly. I was lolly-gagging behind everyone, taking pictures. My friends had been in the parking area for a half-hour by the time I got back. It was worth making them wait though. The fall colors were exploding against the backdrop of snow. None of us wanted to leave. What a beautiful fall hike, and a great precursor to what may be waiting for us this winter!
"I'm not a vegetarian because I love animals; I'm a vegetarian because I hate plants." A. Whitney Brown
A campfire must be extinguished by drowning it with water, stirring with a shovel, and repeating that process until the campfire is cold to the touch. A campfire is still a danger if it has any trace of heat, and must not be left or abandoned. Wildfires can begin by abandoned campfires that rebuild heat on windy days and then blowing embers ignite surrounding grasses and brush.