Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Snuck up to Tahoe again... Twin Peaks!

Monday - rest day

Tuesday - Track workout with the Folsom Trail Runners.  It was hot out... 99 degrees at ~6:15 PM when we started.  Ran a couple of warm-up miles, then intervals of 60s/90s/30s, with 90s recovery breaks.

Wednesday - Another hot run!  Met up with a friend for ~6.75 miles on the Folsom Lake trails.

Thursday - Morning hill repeats.  Ran a quick warm-up mile followed by 3 hill repeats on the "Billy Goat Climb" (+400 ft, ~0.8 miles)

Friday - rest day

Saturday - Headed up the hill to the Lake Tahoe area to explore some new trails and hopefully summit Twin Peaks.  Heading north on HWY 89, past Emerald Bay and Meeks Bay, to Barker Pass Rd.  After a few miles, BP Rd. makes a sharp left, and I continued straight onto Blackwood Canyon Rd (4WD recommended) and continued for a few miles, at which point I felt I needed more truck to continue.

I ran up BC Rd. for a couple of miles and found myself at Barker Pass and an intersection to the Pacific Crest and Tahoe Rim Trails (PCT/TRT).  A map at the trail-head showed Twin Peaks to be roughly 5 miles, to the north, on the trail.  It was after 3:00 PM, so I hurried off.  This section of trail was much more scenic than I anticipated.  Wildflowers and sweeping views of countless valleys, mountain peaks, and Lake Tahoe were a constant presence.

After a few miles, I saw what at the time, I believed to be the Twin Peaks summit and was prepared to start scrambling upwards, but a few hundred yards later, the trail turned a corner and revealed that Twin Peaks were another mile or so away.  Next thing you know, I was right in line with the summit and was looking for a clear way towards the top.  I ended up passing to the east of the summit and then cut back, doing a bit of bushwhacking before I found somewhat of a worn route.  Within a short time, I was scrambling up the boulders, directly towards the summit.  The northern side of the peak drops off sharply, maybe 500-1000 ft., so I made sure to stay aware of my line.  A few minutes later and I had the summit to myself... well, almost to myself.  I'm assuming an osprey must have had a nest nearby, because one shot off of the cliff face and began screeching as it circled off to my right, floating effortlessly above the massive cliff and valley below.

Not Twin Peaks
Final push to the summit.
The angle seen here is the same angle of the approach to the summit.
Partial panorama from the summit.
Twin Peaks Summit video

It was 5:30 and I had 7 miles to cover in order to get back to my truck, so I scrambled back down and got my run on.  I reached my truck around 6:00 PM or so, making for a 14.2 mile, +3,200 ft., 3.5 - 4 hour outing.  Fantastic afternoon!

Beautiful little chunk of trail.
Shaky running video...
The high point of the Twin Peaks summit is on the right.
~halfway back to my truck.

Sunday - 9.3 miles + ~1k ft.  Ran the first 5 miles with Lucy, dropped her off (due to heat), and headed back out for 4 more miles.

Weekly Totals: 42.91 miles;  5,994 ft.

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