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Kaleetan Peak Turn Around – 8/12/18

Another interesting day in the mountains! Super fun to get out with Mary, Nataliya, and Peter, as always. With another marginal weather weekend, we decided to go for Kaleetan peak, out of Snoqualmie pass. This is one that I’ve wanted for a while, and had come up in conversation several times. I was very happy to give it a go. I think Mary can claim credit for the idea, so, thanks Mary 🙂

The trip was off to an auspicious start when we arrived at the Denny Creek trailhead to find honest-to-goodness rain. The forecasts had called for 20% of showers until 11am. Well, we were in the 20%. Optimistic that the weather would clear up, and looking forward to getting some exercise we carried on and started up the trail.

Denny creek water slide on our way up to Melkawa.
Rain on the Denny Creek trail, just above Denny Creek falls.

We made quick time to Melakwa and then upper Melakwa lakes. The rain abated quickly, but the clouds remained, so we hung out at upper Melakwa for about 30 minutes. With a potential of clearing, we decided to head up the climbers’ trail toward the summit.

Upper Melakwa lake, waiting for some of the weather to clear out.
Upper Melakwa Lake

I just wasn’t feeling it. This is odd for me to admit, but I decided I really just didn’t want to be there. It wasn’t for lack of good company, skill, or even objective hazards. My head wasn’t in the game and every step forward felt like I was committing myself to something I really didn’t want to do. So about 50′ into the descent to the summit push I called it for myself. The group decided to turn around with me.

I’m not a fan of feeling that way in the mountains. I understand there are off days, but this was my first mental off day in recent memory. I think it was some combination of climbing season fatigue, and mental fatigue from the recent long runs, and physical fatigue from my long run on Saturday. It’s useful to be humbled, and I’ve been thinking about it some and the true lesson here is unclear to me so far.

Kaleetan, obscured by clouds.
Kaleetan, shrouded in clouds. Right when I got the message from Sarah wishing me good fortune that I would have better views than her. Nope.

Anyways, this just means I get to go back. I’m not going to dwell on this, except to live with my gut.

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