@cake.hikes and I got up before dawn and made our way up to Hurricane Pass for sunrise. We timed it perfectly, and an explosion of flaming sky greeted us as we arrived at the 10,500ft pass. With Grand Teton in the foreground, this sunrise was even better than I expected and one for the memory banks.
As the sun rose, we plunged down into the canyon. I had a couple of great wildlife encounters. The first was a big bull moose just standing there. It was my first big one I’ve ever seen and I was a little excited.
The second was a rather unique encounter with a bear cub. It was 15ft off the trail and pawing at a log. I stopped at the sound before spotting the little thing. It looked up at Cake and I and then unexpectedly went back to pawing the log.
I looked around for the mother to no avail. Where was she? Was the cub just old enough to have left her? Either way, we did not hang around very long. It is best to make like a tree and leave.
After that excitement, we began the climb up a different canyon to Lake Solitude. This has to be one of the most impressive canyons I have ever been in. A glacially carved valley with vertical crags on either side. And best yet, it is bookended at the bottom by the majestic Grand Teton.
It was then time for the second pass of the day that delivered even more stunning views at the top. This trail has been seriously non stop excitement!
As we approached the third pass of the day we stopped for lunch. After looking at our maps, we decided to change things up and get off the Crest Trail as the crest appears to peter out, while some of the side canyons are vertical cliffs.
We went down one and came out at the bottom of Jackson Lake. We walked south to Leigh Lake, had a refreshing swim with a spectacular backdrop before continuing onto the top of Jenny Lake.
From here we started walking the road and try to hitch back to our car. It took a long time but eventually we completed the loop and started the drive towards Borah Peak, Idaho’s highest point and tomorrow’s mission.