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Tag Archives: North Cascades

My friend Cindy came to visit from Grant County and she really likes to hike the Maple Pass trail so on Monday, that’s what we did. Us and over 100 other hikers. The place has become overrun with visitors. The restrooms were strewn with trash from the weekend. It was pretty appalling. I heard that someone else estimated 500 hikers on a weekend day. Egads. While this place is over-the-top beautiful, I may take it off of my list of places to hike. Cindy agreed and said she is ready to explore new trails next time.

This hike at this time of the year is nearly irresistible. How can you NOT do this? Just the drive to the trailhead is enough to make you stop and pay attention.

But it was stunningly beautiful. Easy Pass. It’s another great hike right off of highway 20 through the North Cascades. It starts out in a green, moist forest, something we don’t get to experience very often. That is because it is west of the Cascade Crest where there is more precipitation and it’s not as hot. Much of the trail goes in and out of the forest giving some respite from the sunshine. We had a fair amount of off and on cloud cover in addition to somewhat hazy skies as a result of wildfires. At a certain point the trail really gets to work – sending you up and over seemingly never ending talus slopes. Ok, I’m not in very good shape and the steepness was pretty hard on me, both going up and going down. Even Luna and Sky were pretty tired. But the views were worth it. And there were creeks most of the way so the dogs had plenty of chances to cool themselves.

Wildflowers, vistas, butterflies, dogs, clean cool creeks. What more could I want?

I’ve spent much of the first half of January right here. Staring at this screen. Rebuilding my website. It was a painful process – mentally and physically. Now it’s done. More or less. There’s always something more that could be done. And goodness knows, restoring all of those blog posts is on my ‘to do’ list. But for now it will have to wait. Take a look at Reflected Light Images if you are interested to see what I do when I’m not doing this other stuff.

There have been a few brilliantly sunny days but in general it’s been gray. There has been some new snow so skiing conditions are generally good whether for cross country or downhill. Ken and I made a trip to the Loup Loup Ski Bowl last weekend. It was a long ago gift from him to me and I was pleasantly surprised to find out I could still do it. Tomorrow I have a wedding to photograph at the Loup and I am feeling confident about my downhill skills and looking forward to another fun day.

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