Rattlesnake Mountain

East Peak

8.8 miles roundtrip - 2590' elevation gain

APRIL 15, 2007  - A solo hike on Rattlesnake Mountain.  It was a great day to hike a trail with views, and this trail was a perfect choice.  The trail to Rattlesnake Ledge is 2.2 miles and heavily traveled.  I stopped on the ledge for a snack and a sun break before continuing on towards the East Peak.  This portion of the trail is more primitive and less used, and it led me ever up through some of the darkest woods I have hiked through.  I didn't see another person for almost an hour, and I nearly turned back several times because I found the darkness of the woods intimidating.  The temperature dropped steadily, and I soon found myself on a stretch of trail through deep woods that still had snow, though it was melting fast.  Just when I thought I would never reach the peak, I saw the tower in the distance, and shortly afterwards found myself out of the woods and overlooking spectacular Mount Si.  Two gray jays--aptly named camp robbers--quickly joined me and teased me for food.  One nearly ransacked my pack when none was forthcoming.