Our campsite at 6100′ was pretty cold the next morning. I woke up a few times before I conjured the willpower to exit my sleeping bag and brave the elements. But the sun was out and once it hit our site, the temperature warmed quickly.

The plan for the day was to hike the Meysan Lake trail, a shorter and much less trafficked trail very near the popular Whitney Portal trail. The Meysan Lake trail is 11.2 miles round trip, topping out at 11,400′. Not bad.

We hit the trailhead at 1045hrs. The sun was out but depending on where we were in the canyon, we went through pretty sizable patches of shade. The trail was in great condition, with only about an inch or two of snow in places. The snow became more frequent the higher we hiked, but never really became a factor, fortunately. We made it to Grass Lake, which is located on the shelf below Meysan Lake, at 1400hrs. With the short winter days and an impending storm blowing toward us over the Sierras, we set 2pm as our turn around time. Meysan Lake itself will have to wait for another time, but Grass Lake was a picturesque reward. A frozen tarn nestled amongst giant granite peaks certainly did not disappoint.

We began our descent and were chased down the mountain by the storm blowing at our backs. About halfway down, snow began falling around us and Titus was noticeably tired. Seven miles of hiking on decomposed granite and snow was beginning to take its toll. We were able to encourage him to keep going, and to his credit, he completed the whole lap under his own power. Which was good, because I was really not looking forward to packing him out at 85 lbs.

Back at the trucks, we buzzed into town as sun set to grab firewood and regroup. Because of the storm, we opted to stay down in Alabama Hills proper (4300′) which turned out to be a great choice.

We found a killer spot with a large half-cave shelter that protected the fire pit. We arranged the trucks in front to protect our fire from the winds and settled down to dinner and relaxation.

Coming soon because I shot film. Will update when photos come back.