On New Year's Eve we trekked out to the Gorge and hiked up Angel's Rest. This is the fifth year in a row for the Pentaquest either starting or ending with this hike. We've encountered everything from dangerously slick ice, brutal cold, extreme winds, and other inclement trail conditions since the tradition started. But not on this day. Although the temperature hovered around freezing and visibility was limited, the wind was almost nonexistent and most of the group had poles and traction devices to navigate through the ice patches.

Rather than write up a detailed trip report, here's a haiku:

No view? No problem.

We closed down 2016.

A great group of eight.

  Here's us on top of Angel's Rest. You can almost see Mt. Adams if you stare at the backdrop long enough.

Here's us on top of Angel's Rest. You can almost see Mt. Adams if you stare at the backdrop long enough.

The trail is one of the best places to reflect on the past year and think about what lies ahead. 2016 was a consequential year for many reasons. Speaking for myself, I can't think of a year with more contrast between the biggest win (birth of a child), and the worst loss (disastrous outcome of the November election). Regardless of what else is going on in the world, I gain strength spending time with great people on the trail.