Black lake sits in a cirque below McHenrys Peak.
At one point the trail disappears onto an exposed stretch of granite. I continue to walk for few minutes across the rock and come to the other side. The giant slab ends at a steep drop-off. The slope below is thick with trees. I have lost the trail. I backtrack to where I was before but I’m confused, I’ve turned several times and have lost my sight of the trail. When I find it, I am all turned around, which way should I go? I can’t be bothered to dig the map and compass out of my backpack so I just start walking, trying to read the terrain.
After a few minutes, a couple walks past me going in the opposite direction. I recognize them. They were sitting at Black Lake a half hour ago when I left. They should be following behind me, or perhaps ahead of me, anything but walking towards me. I let them pass. I pause for a moment and turn around to follow. I find the stretch of trail that I had missed earlier. I am relieved but wonder if I’m getting giddy from exhaustion and altitude.