As I topped out at Ten Lakes Pass this past weekend, I was sweating and cursing the hot sun and heat. The exposed landscape and high altitude meant the sun was super intense, and very little breeze was blowing to help cool off. Half of my group was ahead and half behind, so I decided to drop my pack, hydrate, and wait for the rest of the group to catch up.
Instead, I was attacked by a wild napping rock. (When NAPS ATTACK!)
After a brief snooze under the sun, I awoke and eyed a nearby snow patch. It’s been a dry year but there is still a bit of snow above 10k. I rolled a snowball and rubbed it on the back of my hot neck. Yep, that felt good. I was tempted to make a snow angel.
Instead, I rolled another snowball.
Then, I took my OmniFreeze Zero gaiter (don’t leave home without it!)…
…and stuck that sucker inside.
I put it back around my neck.
And for the next mile it gradually melted, dripping refreshing freezing cold water.
I intend to use this technique liberally throughout the summer. I always thought one advantage to hiking above 10k was access to snow for margaritas, but this is really what it’s good for!