Page 13 - Walks In The Black Range, Vol. 4
P. 13

 3. Sawyers Peak Trail

Locally, the section of the Black Range Crest Trail which runs south from Emory Pass to Sawyer’s Peak is known as the Sawyers Peak Trail. The Trail is 3.9 miles long and has a net
elevation gain of 1,638 feet. It is generally considered a moderate walk. Note, however, that since the Silver Fire the exposure to the sun along this route is much more intense than it was in the past.
Trail condition as of June 2019: There are sections of blowdown along the trail, but the trail, see above, is generally easy to follow. The section of trail from Emory Pass to the Grandview Trail Junction was in very good condition. Above the junction there was a significant amount of blowdown for about a quarter of a mile. Further along, the blowdown decreased, and for the last mile or so the trail was in good condition. There is no longer a “trail” from the Crest Trail to the summit of Sawyers Peak. Route finding is easy, however. Once you get to the saddle at the base of the peak turn west and go up.
The natural history along this trail is typical of the Crest Trail generally. There are ladybugs found at the summit of Sawyers Peak in the summer.
The caption numbers for the following photographs are keyed to the route map at the end of this trail entry. We start at the peak and head north to Emory Pass in this description - it is easier that way since it is downhill. The first link (in red) in each caption links to our photo gallery of the species at the Black Range Website,
1. Convergent Lady Bettle, Hippodamia convergens. The “red stain” at the base of the tree (above) is a mass of ladybugs. (See next page and below.) The trees at the summit of Sawyers Peak are covered like this and it is not advisable to try to eat a picnic lunch at the summit - because the lady bugs are everywhere. This species generally has twelve spots, six on each elytron (the hard wing case which forms the “back” of the beetle). The prothorax (area behind the head) has distinctive white lines which converge near the elytrons.

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