The hike starts easy enough and builds to an ass-kicking crescendo.
Clocking in at 7 miles round trip with only 1800' of elevation gain, the trail seemed like it was going to provide smooth sailing. Unfortunately though, the bulk of elevation gain comes in the final half mile push to the summit. I took a few "photo breaks" to check out the flowers, and also catch my breath, but the views at the top are totally worth the struggle.
After reaching the top we headed down to cool off in the snow melt waters of Lake Valhalla.