Thursday, June 26, 2014

No Name Loop CW - 6/26/14

Bristlecone Forest on No Name Trail

No Name Trail

 Seventeen friends came out on this overcast morning for a hike in the Spring Mountains NRA. The trail du jour was the tried and true No Name Loop that we would do in a clockwise direction. We all looked forward to a cool morning on a familiar trail as we parked at the Upper Bristlecone trailhead at the end of the Lee Canyon Road and started hiking. With the exception of a small group of hikers that we passed at the beginning, we had the trail to ourselves until we were on the way down.

Hiking Through Aspens on Upper Bristlecone Trail
 Everywhere that there was an open slope, there were wildflowers. Red, yellow and purple ... but mostly white.

Climbing No Name Trail

 At one mile up the trail, we junctioned with the No Name Trail. Over the past few years, this trail has become very clear. It isn't difficult to follow it up next to a wash and ending on a saddle area. What is difficult is the climb! This next half mile is where most of the 1300 feet of elevation is gained. We moved up the trail slowly but surely. The forest was beautiful in the diffused light!

Regrouping at the No Name Saddle
 We all reached the saddle within the same five minutes. This was our second regrouping.

Hiking into the No Name Enchanted Forest

 The next part of the hike is one mile through an enchanted forest of old bristlecone pines. The trail does not gain too much altitude here as we walked just below the ridge up to our right. To our left was a deep canyon of trees. Except for a lagging photographer, the group enjoyed the mile together then found a log seat at the junction of No Name and Bonanza Trails.

View from the No Name Trail
 We sat here for our break and received the "full effect" of the cold June wind! When we started down the Bonanza Trail switchbacks, the wind disappeared.

Snacking at the No Name / Bonanza Junction

 We dropped down the four Bonanza switchbacks and turned right on the Upper Bristlecone Trail. From here on out, the group stayed together on a somewhat leisurely descent to the trailhead and cars. We wished that the cool morning could have gone on a bit longer but ....

Less than 6 miles; 1300 feet elevation gain; 2.5 hours

Hiking Out the Upper Bristlecone Trail

The Upper Bristlecone Trail

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