So yesterday (Saturday) I did basically nothing.
And it was glorious.
But this was a long weekend… and while lazy days are definitely acceptable and recommended, they shouldn’t become the standard. So I packed up my little mini camel-back, got in the car, and tore down I-84 with the top down toward something I’d been looking at doing…
Nesmith Point, a training hike for alpinists. It’s been in use for years, and all the guidebooks rank is as an ideal training hike, due to the elevation and length of the hike. It’s pretty unique in the Gorge, as far as I can tell, since most of the hikes I’ve done there are high elevation gain but short.
Distance – 10.6 miles round trip, trail head and back.
Elevation – Starts at 72ft, gains 3,800ft
So… steep and long, but not high elevation, so altitude wasn’t an issue to battle with for once… too many hikes on Mt. Hood!
The hike itself was… sustained. Honestly, I didn’t have any really breathtaking vistas, which was kind of a bummer. You’d think that, with all the elevation, there’d be at least a few good views… right? But not so much – trees were thick, and while they did lead me to some interesting little partial viewpoints, there weren’t any of the huge ones that I’ve gotten used to in the gorge.
But it was a really good training hike, so I can’t fault the guidebook, can I? And it was a pleasant training hike – it was sustained elevation gain, instead of the usual “Ohh my god how many switchbacks can I do? And how is this trail still going up?”, so it’s definitely got that going for it.
Score: 10/10, if you’re looking for an alpine training hike. Toss on your Mt. Hood backpack, lace up your boots, and get up there!