Day 5: Goodbye Sierras, Hello Carson Range

Monday September 23, 23.2mi/37.3km

Luther Pass Campground CA (87.3/7290ft) to Heavenly’s Galaxy Ski Lift NV (108.5/8087ft)

It was a warm night in the campground, and I had a relaxing breakfast, taking advantage of the amenities of picnic tables and privies.

It was another nice sunny day, though today was a bit more windy. I strolled along all morning thru alpine forests and meadows, and let my mind wander. I came to a junction, and while I really wanted to find out what “Mr Toads” is, I continued on the TRT.

Someone had fun with stickers at this junction too.

I crossed Freel Meadows, and then the wind really increased.

As I walked the ridge lines, it was fun to watch the clouds interact with the mountains.

A view of Lake Tahoe to the north:

And then, right when I was thinking about lunch, I found juniper trees! I love juniper trees.

They were like sentinels guarding the trail.

I ate lunch, saw my first hikers of the day, and then continued up to the junction with Freel Peak.

It’s only a mile side trip, and it’s the highest peak in the Carson Range, at 10,885ft/3318m. So why not?

Up, up, up, it was a tough climb. After 1100ft in a mile, I was on the summit.

There was a summit register and sign on top too.

The register was actually many small notebooks, all full. Darn. And I noticed the sticker for In-N-Out, and I dreamed about burgers and shakes.

It was cold on the summit, and there was heaps of wind, so I pushed on back down to mountain. I was pretty tired, but still had 9mi to go. Onward to Star Lake!

After a nice break at the lake, I enjoyed a warm afternoon of mostly flat walking. It was noticeably drier on this side of the mountains.

After awhile, I was walking on a ridge overlooking the Carson Valley, thousands of feet below.

A mile later, I came upon a huuuuge tree. I named it the Fuccillo tree, ha!

And soon after that, I crossed into Nevada. Goodbye California, I’ll be back in a couple of days.

I found a nice flat spot under a ski lift, and I setup there. Hanging a bear bag was easy!

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