Our recent 8-mile (round trip) hike to the lookout station on Granite Mountain was perhaps a bit more intense than I planned for. I may have grumbled my way through a snow field and some steep switchbacks, but the view from the lookout was well worth it. The hike was on the south-facing slope, which meant that once we climbed above the forest line and entered the alpine meadows we were in the sun for a solid 3-4 hours. There was also an unexpected amount of snow in the last leg of the hike. We overheard another hiker comment that this Granite Lookout hike is rated a difficulty of 4 (on a 1-5 scale). Thankfully this fact was revealed only after we reached the summit. In total the hike has a 3800-foot elevation gain, topping out at ~5600 feet.