My mother is training for her first multi-night hike in a few weeks and was eager to test her fitness with a challenging hike in Jackson. Earlier in the week, Jessica and I trekked up into Garnet canyon with some friends. We chose Garnet because there was too much snow in many of the other canyons. Only a few days later, Jessica and I headed back to the trailhead to repeat the hike.
My mother was definitely a little nervous. Her overnight hike was only a few weeks away and she wanted to build some confidence, not ruin it! Based on past experience, though, Jessica and I were confident she could complete the hike. We woke up early to give ourselves plenty of time in the cooler part of the day.
Knowing what to expect always makes a hike a little easier, and this time we were more mentally prepared for the switchbacks. I enjoyed looking for features I had seen earlier like little streams and pockets of wildflowers.
Even having been there only a few days earlier, making the turn into Garnet Canyon was awesome. The views were incredible. I just a few days the snow had reduced dramatically starting farther up the trail. The depth of snow had also decreased a lot. Rocks that were either buried or barely exposed were now almost entirely visible.
The shallower snow was actually harder to cross because there were more little bridges for your feet to break through. We travelled about 100 yards before stopping on a large rock for some lunch. This time there was (thankfully) no thunderstorm chasing us down the trail, and we were able to enjoy the views for a longer period of time.
It was a wonderful trip back up to the higher elevations of Grand Teton National Park and gave my mother a much-needed confidence boost!