Day 2 on the Routeburn Track: Routeburn Falls Hut to Lake Mackenzie Hut

Routeburn Track Day Two

Climbing has taken a big hold on my life in the past couple months. I freakin’ love climbing. I mean, I’ve always loved climbing, but with having regular-ish climbing partners and getting outdoors a bunch, I REALLY LOVE CLIMBING. There’s a reason why you shouldn’t let climbers into the backcountry, and that’s summarized by days like today. The agenda was fairly straightforward. AJ and I would hike up to Harris Saddle, then out to Lake Mackenzie Hut.

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Day 1 on the Routeburn Track: Routeburn Shelter to Routeburn Falls Hut

Hiking the Routeburn Track New Zealand

After making my way through Christchurch and Queenstown, I was finally heading out on the Routeburn Track! It had rained that night and my dreams of tramping this Great Walk were almost trampled by threats of high wind. I’d met my new backpacking friend, AJ, climbing the day prior and he asked if he could join me on the track. Though my whole mission was to wander around solo, I opted for some company.

Worst case scenario, we’d part ways. Best case scenario, it would be a blast. AJ and I woke up bright and early to a drizzly and gloomy morning. We were going to catch a TrackNet bus from Queenstown to the Routeburn Shelter where we would begin our tramping.

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Snowshoe to Huntoon Point

Snowshoe to Huntoon Point

If there’s one thing Washington’s Mt. Baker is famous for, it’s snow. In 2006, Baker set the world record for annual snowfall with nearly 96 feet of powder. Every winter, the mountain’s northeastern slopes are alive with powderhounds seeking out first tracks both inbounds and out. The best way to experience this iconic PNW volcano is to snowshoe or ski tour up to Artist and Huntoon Points for an overnight adventure.

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Backpacking Mildred Lake, Convict Canyon

Backpacking Mildred Lake, Convict Canyon

From Taylor Swift and Luke Bryan tickets booked months in advance to Outdoor Retailer, August was a pretty jam packed month for me. I took a look at my calendar, saw one free weekend and knew I had to capitalize on it or be sad forever. I texted my friend Bobby and put together a game plan. We were going to head to Mildred Lake up Convict Canyon for some epic and mellow backpacking.

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Backpacking Meiss Lake, Mokelumne Wilderness

Backpacking Meiss Lake, Mokelumne Wilderness Trip Report

My little brother just got back from a brief stint of backpacking through Europe. With his heart still full of adventure, he asked me to take him out somewhere, anywhere. He didn’t give me any criteria and said he was down for whatever, but the first time someone goes backpacking will obviously make or break their experience. After much hemming and hawing, Meiss Lake in Mokelumne Wilderness was my pick.

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