Thursday, April 8, 2010

Not one raindrop

Very few Senior Trailblazers (seven to be exact) came out today for our regular Thursday hike. It had something to do with the weather forecast: it was awful. All last night the wind blew hard, and more than a half inch of rain fell. The forecast for today:
Windy...occasional showers. Precipitation may mix with wet snow in heavier showers. Highs 45 to 50. Northwest wind 15 to 30 mph. Local gusts to 45 mph this morning. 
When I woke to find the sun shining, I figured it would end soon. I packed my new backpack with all the rain gear near the top, and since it was going to be windy and rainy, I took lots of warm clothes. That picture above shows the beginning of our hike today, up what we call "Cub Creek." Isn't it an inviting trail? We meandered up the trail in perfect hiking weather. We covered eight miles in total and 1,500 feet in elevation.
As we climbed higher, though, this is what we saw: snow. Apparently last night while it was raining in Bellingham, at the higher elevations snow was falling. This is Al, who led our trek up past the Cub Creek trail to the Stewart Mountain road. The rain never came, and the only precipitation we had were the big plops of snow falling off the trees onto us, like on Al's arm. (Click to enlarge.)
When we got to our lunch spot, we looked at the temperature and noticed that it wasn't exactly warm, right around freezing. But the wind never blew, other than an occasional gust (just enough to let the snow on the trees give us a nice shower). Here's how much snow was on the logs when we brushed them off to have lunch:
I would say it's about five or six inches, and walking in the snow was a bit tiring. By the time we had gone four miles and stopped for lunch, we discussed whether to go on longer or start back. The consensus was not to push our luck, so although our total miles were just under eight, several of them were in snow, which takes a little more effort to walk through. I'm tired but not terribly so.
I just had to show you my new pack: it's an REI Ventura 30, which gives me the room to carry everything I need. That's my nifty inflatable REI seat cushion, much nicer to sit on than that cold snow, my sparkly hat, and my trekking poles. We did get a view now and then.
This picture looks out past the snow-covered trees to Lake Whatcom, where we started out. It was a truly wonderful day, and although I'm feeling well exercised, I'm not hobbling around like I was a week ago. This was much more fun, although one of our more enthusiastic hikers thought it was a "wimpy" hike. Not! And not one raindrop.


  1. 83 and sunny here yesterday; 60's and cloudy today. No more snow, and hopefully no more for the rest of the season!!!

  2. I was going to say that I admired your stamina, then thought that this might not be the correct word, so I looked it up. Stamina: enduring energy, strength, and resilience. Exactly! That is you, and you have got a lot of it. That last photo is so beautiful – it does look cold though.

  3. Gorgeous shot looking down on the snow covered trees and lakes below! Love your hiking bag and color coordinated are a hiking fashionista!

  4. The first photo was really inviting DJ, I can almost smell the green leaves but OMG that thick ice! Weather is really unpredictable!

  5. Beautiful....of course, snow and mountains always get my heart racing. I'm also your hikes.

  6. I love the untouched snow; it's so serenely beautiful. I am surprised you're not more worn out because it is quite a bit harder to walk in the snow. I love your equipment! You are so stylish:) How much does it weigh by the time you've gotten it packed? Also, is it tough to hike with the extra weight?

    The last photo, did you edit it somehow or is that the way the picture looked? It almost looks like you've added some sort of filter. Either way, the lighting is awesome!

  7. Our weather has been so unpredictable. In your case, it was a good thing!

  8. Beautiful pics, DJan...I'm living vicariously thru you and these treks...

    I really miss the west coast.

  9. Absolutely not a wimpy hike! We had a snowfall like that last week, but today the sun was out and all of the icicles, some from our roof down two stories, came crashing down and scaring poor Lucy.

  10. Sparkly hat?? What happened to those lovely warm hats you knitted for yourself? Nice backpack, though.

    As usual, beautiful pictures. You live in a very nice place. Lucky you!!

  11. Gorgeous shots!!! And I'm jealous about your REI equipment... trekking equipment in Spain is hard to find, not much selection, and expensive! I had the perfect REI daypack I bought (well, my parents, lol!) in Denver in 1991 and once it finally died almost a decade later, well... lets just say I've got a collection of backpacks and none of them is "just right". argh!!!

    Your trekking posts are making me "insanely" jealous!!! I'm going to Mallorca next weekend for family fun (a twin first communion and then a baptism) and part of my plan was to escape to the gorgeous mountains on the island with my two co-conspirators (the summer of '76 produced some wacky individuals! 3 cousins the same summer? danger alert!!!)... but my stupid ankle is keeping me off the trails!!! My physio told me yesterday "sure you can go for a hike... if you want to come back looking like Big Foot!" snif!!!

    anyhow, I actually stopped by to TAG you!!!

    pretty please?


  12. My hikes in my woods are wimpy, but not yours, DJann! Loved the picnic in the snow and the beautiful view. The hike was rejuevenating, I'm sure.♥...Wanda

  13. Lovely variety of scenery in these pictures today. I loved the snowy ones best.
    Blessings, Star

  14. The trail head does look very inviting, I always like to see the lush greens of your area. As usual I was thinking about you and your group on Thursday. We were getting hit with strong winds and some rain with a little hail mixed in to keep things exciting. I'm glad it had moved out of your area in time for the hike.

    Your sparkly hat is cool.

  15. Looks like a great hike..your new backpack is trimmed in your colors!! I got used to wearing a backpack when I went back to college..and I still have one, and I still use it, much better than a purse!
    Eight miles..that is a hike! Loved the wintry views! :)


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