Yesterday, I told my wife this was the most physically and mentally challenging thing I've ever done. What a difference a day makes. Yes, it was hard and could have turned epic( I only think of it in a bad way) but it turned out .
The hike started walking up FR 552 to Lockette Meadow. A little while later, I was sinking in snow so I donned my snowshoes. My 35pd pack was now lighter but still felt like I was carrying a condo. I do plan on doing some backpacking so that should be good practice. Second time up Rees but this time I look a longer route. First time wearing boots in 6 years and I was constantly adjusting them.
The descent off Rees was a little scary at first but the spice factor ended pretty quickly. Looking up at Abineau was pretty intimidating but that was the goal for today. Abineau was tough and definitely an earned peak. It wasn't fun grabbing branches with one hand and ice axe in the other to stay in place. Sometimes crawling but mostly bootin it. I adjusted my route upon seeing some fractures and cornice but stayed pretty true to the ridge. Great views especially seeing the Humphreys ridgeline.
Humphreys ridgeline was the highlight but it also had a suck factor. The winds picked up and I got really .
I was pretty drained and was dragging. Cold hands and feet had to be taken care of so I stopped and sat in the fierce wind and made clothing adjustments. Once on top of Humphreys, it was like a whole new weather pattern. The sun was shining and I needed to shed layers.
Once the sun set, things went bad for awhile. My glasses never changed back from sunglasses. This was a problem along with post holing up to my waist. I put my snowshoes back on and that helped until I broke one of the binding straps. Finally found the packed down trail and was at my meetup spot an hour late . I wanted to nap on the way to pick up my vehicle but I was overtired and slap happy. I decided to spend the night in Flagstaff and drove home in the morning.