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Eastern Cayoosh: Ridges upon Ridges # 1880

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Date: 1996.10.04
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Caption: From the Gott Peak ridge complex, looking north, there is a seemingly endless set of ridges advancing through the central and eastern Cayoosh Range. Most of the scene is alpine, with dry ridgetops common throughout the summer and fall. While the ridgetops are generally easy to travel, there are a number of good scrambling objectives mixed in to make the country interesting.

PhotoDescr: It may take a lifetime or two to walk all the ridges of the Cayoosh and surrounding areas, but it is on days like the one in the photo that it is possible to see how the many ridges link up so well to make long hiking routes.

As the eastern Cayoosh Range has an abundance of large ungulates, there are generally well-established game trails accessing and traversing the ridgecrests. All one has to do is to take advantage of one of the many fine access points and then walk on. As this photograph does reveal, however, water is usually difficult to find on the ridgetops during the late summer and fall of the year. Game trails do tend to descend to reliable water sources where feasible.

Below the ridgecrests, depending upon aspect, one can find well-developed meadow complexes. There are some south-facing slopes in the range which have incredibly abundant flower displays, and the long hours of sunshine and good soils on some aspects allow for rather lush and large subalpine flora. Sometimes, this makes for interesting routefinding when descending from the ridgetops, as slide alder and willow thickets may be enough to test the hardiest mountain folk.

Many who hike often in the area carry ski poles and wear sturdy boots for descents from these routes. When the flowers are waist deep, it's good to know that a strong supportive boot will keep you going no matter what is under foot.

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