|Peak Summited||2019 San Bernardino Peak|
|Type of Hike||Day hike|
|Hiking Companions||Hiked with a group|
|Road Conditions||Road suitable for all vehicles|
|Bug Status||No bugs|
|Snow Conditions||Trail snow-covered at times - Gear and expertise recommended|
|Trail Conditions||Trail in good condition|
San Bernardino was my final peak to bag. Last Sunday I completed the NorCal Challenge and so this was Peak 12 for me.
I invited some friends who live in the area and planned for a fun snow day. We were a group of 5 and ready to take on the mountain. I left the Bay Area the evening before and arrived at the trailhead 6 hours later and had about 2 hours to rest before the rest of the crew arrived. We hit the trail at 6am and made our way up. The sun was rising and the sky was dark pink with a little clouds.
There were light patches of snow in the parking area and the snow coverage became more about 2 miles up. About 4 miles before Lumber Pines Bench, we all decided to head straight up the mountain since there was no visible trail and the snow was deep everywhere. We all used ice axes and crampons for the climb and also had some breaks to practice self arrest and glissading, partially because its fun but also because we need these skills to hike in these conditions.
We post holed to knee height often but all were prepared with proper gear. The route we took was fun as we made our way up through the trees toward the peak.
We finally arrived around 1p and enjoyed a nice lunch trying to stay out of the wind. My friend had a Birthday this week so I brought up a little chocolate cake for him that was shaped like a Teton Peak. We sang Happy Birthday and he ate that cake in a few seconds.
Summit photo sesh happened after the meal and then we made our way back down, following our footprints back. We ended up glissading down most of the top and weren't able to get too much speed and distance. It was fun and we all were having the time of our lives.
As sunset began, the sky and snow turned from pink to glowing orange and it was pretty magical. This night was also a full moon and it helped on our decent in the dark. Guided by headlamp we hike the last 4 miles at a meditative pace, only talking every 10-15 minutes or so, cracking a joke every once in a while. It wasn't too cold but we were ready to be back at our cars. I was ready for a change of socks and to put my slippers on.
Fun day playing on the mountain and happy to complete the challenge.