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Trying to get in one hike per week is not always easy. Everyday life and work gets in the way, of course, and then there’s the weather. Friday I was planning a mountain outing and the weather forecast was for extreme thunderstorms and lots of rain. I cancelled my plans and was glad of it. We were lucky to have lots of rain, thunder and lightning and wind. Other places also had flash flooding and 80 mph winds that pushed down trees and knocked out power.

I managed to get some work done on Friday and changee my hike to the other side of the valley and headed for Tiffany Mountain, elevation 8242′. It’s a long drive up Boulder Creek from the East Chewuch Road, 22 miles from Winthrop to the trailhead. The valley had scattered fog from the rain the day before and puffy white clouds appeared up high. The Freezeout trail to Tiffany is three miles, one way, with a steep part to start, then a gradual grade and finishing with another steep part to get to the top. The elevation gain is 1740′. This area is great for wildflowers but Luna and I were a couple weeks early for the main part of the bloom. We may have to do it again!

Looking up at the mountain I could always see white clouds behind it. At the top, looking down the other side towards Tiffany Lake, all I could see was cloud – no view of the lakes or even towards the Okanogan. The clouds were piled up against the ridge. It was mostly sunny for us with a few sun blocks off and on. The temperature was comfortable and I needed my windbreaker at the top where it was breezy and cool.

Fog in the river valley before I left home.

This area is part of the Tripod fire from 2006.

I have to confess – I saw this piece of wood from a long ways away and was convinced it was a grouse.

 

I think these are dead whitebark pines. Whitebark pines are in decline around the west for a variety of reasons. You can learn more about them here.

 

The ‘easy’ part of the trail, with the summit in view. In a couple of weeks, the meadow will be ablaze with wildflowers.

 

From the top, looking south along the ridge. The Okanogan and Conconcully are on the other side that is covered in clouds.

 

And looking northwest; down to the right in the mist, way down, is Tiffany Lake. I did get a glimpse of a pika in the rocks and heard their high-pitched calls

 

Ladybugs clustered on lichen covered rocks near the summit.

 

Good Luna – look at the camera!

 

Even with several tries, I never did get her to look at the camera with me!

 

Heather is just starting to come in to bloom

 

Close-up of a whitebark pine

 

I learned a long time ago from a botanist that flowers like this are commonly referred to as DYC’s – darned yellow composites.

 

Asters – another member of the composite family

 

Sedum lanceolatum, maybe. Definitely a sedum.

 

Luna and I took a side trip to look at First Butte Lookout. Only five miles the sign said. Five rough miles. Now I’ve seen it and don’t have to wonder about it anymore.

 

Always have to remember to cool my feet after a good hike.

 

And the reason I picked a hike on that side of the valley? Ken was playing music with his friend Bill at the Methow Valley Ciderhouse! A cold glass of Howling Wolf Cider really hit the spot!

24 Comments

  1. Don’t you just love wildflowers? They’re so surprising sometimes…absolutely beautiful. And so is that last picture, by the way… 🙂

  2. Hi there 🙂 the word – Mindblowing is not enough to express the beauty you have captured here!! All of them are amazing,yet my fav pics- the ridge, the mist above tiffany lake, the cold feet, the asters..

    Beautiful… Thanks for all that 🙂

    Cheers,
    Shraddha

  3. Awesome! Great day hike with your buddy! I’ve only been to Washington State once and I hiked part of the Hoh rain forest in the Olympics. Been wanting to get back ever since. Your in a mountain hiking paradise. I wish I could hike in the mtns once a week. Very jealous! 🙂

  4. that looks like a great time all around! I understand the frustration of trying to get a dog to look at the camera at the right time… some days you just can’t get it.

  5. Nice post. A friend and I were once cooling our heels in the Cheewach when a rattler swam by. I had no idea they would enter a river like that. Do you like the Pasayten? Love that area.

  6. LOVE the shot of all the ladybugs – how strange!

    You also have a very beautiful dog. And a keen eye for good photos! Really enjoyed your post. 🙂

  7. So cool! Love this series, and your choice of subjects. That cider does look good-

  8. Absolutely fantastic pictures!

  9. Impressive place and beautiful pictures.

  10. Beautiful. I miss Washington.

  11. Beautiful hike ! Congratulations on being fresh pressed.

  12. These pictures are enchanting. Where exactly is this–the names of places you gave aren’t familiar to me.

  13. One of my favorite things is to go hiking along the Pacific coast out here in the San Francisco Bay Area – from San Francisco down to Big Sur – just gorgeous. Really enjoyed your photos, you took me on that hike with you. Thanks!
    -Martie

  14. Nice photos! Grats on being Freshly Pressed!

  15. really nice i like it ..

  16. Loved the last picture….the grand finale! Good pictures!

  17. Beautiful pic’s like it very much…

  18. Beautiful pics – thanks for the reminder of the grandeur of nature’s unspoiled places. I’d love to take my dog on a nature hike – for now we settle with exploring urban space, and the shore of Lake Michigan. Congrats on being FP

  19. Thank you for bringing a wonderful piece of Washington state to the world. I lived in Seattle many, many years ago as a young teenager but never got to see any of the rest of the state. Being an ” East Coaster” I was forever looking to the horizon. Puget Sound and the mountains in the distance. Beautiful, to this day I can still see them in my minds eye.

  20. This is the beauty of blogging — now I can experience what its like to go up that mountain. We’re all really experiencing the world through other people’s eye —

  21. What a beautiful place!

  22. Nice pictures! The reference to Freezeout Ridge caught my eye. I used to live in northern Idaho (a place near and dear to my heart) and we had a Freezeout Ridge nearby. I thought it may be the same place and I was so looking forward to some nostalgia. But alas, it’s somewhere other than my beloved Idaho…but that’s okay, because what you’ve captured is spectacular!!


3 Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. By The blogs that make my day!! | ibelivetoday on 03 Aug 2012 at 1:08 pm

    […] to hit on follow!! Especially the Summer Scenes & Hiking on the Pacific Crest Trail. Also the Tiffany Mountain actually. This blogsite is just too […]

  2. […] Mountain again. You may recall that Luna and I walked that trail back in July. Pictures are here. This time, my friend Marcy and her dog Guthrie went along. It started out fairly chilly with Marcy […]

  3. By Tiffany Mountain in July | My Everyday Photos on 23 Jul 2015 at 8:19 pm

    […] Here is a post from exactly three years ago about the same hike! […]

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