I just retired from "that airplane company" after 35 years. What better way to celebrate than with great weather and a beautiful climbing trail with a view. I left the Jennifer Dunn Trailhead about 7:15 am (only car there) and began climbing in the clear, 34 degree, morning. Just after the Meadow Drainage crossing, there is a large chainsaw job to clear two, two foot diameter trunks that block the switchbacks and need removal. A little bit later, soon after, there is another easier job too. Those pics are in my GPS link. After the first road to trail switchback, the raised frost from the wet soils and freezing overnight developed and added a crunchy sound to alert animals or make the descent and cornering a little interesting. It almost felt like the sandy volcanic soils. There was no significant snow until the meadow but some of the trail has residual sections of snow but the traction was good. Traversing the meadow was difficult since the ruts from one or two others was all frozen and hard to track in. I just walked to the meadow high point, took my photos, put on the rain pants and coat for the cold/wet descent and came down smiling. It was a little wet in spots but the actual trail is draining real well except where the drainage follows the trail fall line. It was a beautiful day. Here is a panoramic photo from the high point of the meadow.
The view up there is so memorable, and with the best weather, it just can't get much better. GPS track and pictures are here. The only bummer is you have to drive on that road to highway two once you get back to the car. :-( Oh well, you can't have everything but at least I don't have to go to work on weekdays anymore! :-)