After searching around on line to find out why this particular hike is called "Burnout Trail" or "Burnout Point," I was unsuccessful. We have done this hike before, but earlier this fall we were turned back from this particular trail because of logging activity in the area. We only had seven intrepid Trailblazers turn up for today's hike because the forecast indicated a 60% chance of rain or snow. The hike starts at the Clayton Beach trailhead and goes unrelentingly upward for the first few miles. There was no sun, but the mist made the cool and rather magical forest inviting and restful. There was no wind, and we chatted as we climbed.
By the time we reached around 1,400 feet of elevation, the snow that had fallen yesterday began to stick to the road and the surrounding vegetation. It was really lovely and peaceful, and we continued our upward climb while enjoying being outdoors without any rain. We had very little precipitation today, even though it obviously fell not long before.
Linda's red hat adds just enough color to make this picture a favorite. We saw the icicles on the side of the road, and they must have formed from runoff and freezing, because there is no stream in the area. They were really stunning as we approached them in the mist. I suspect after a day or two of sunshine, they will all be gone. We were in the right place at the right time!
We reached the logged area and looked for the viewpoint, which we didn't visit, since there was obviously no view at all. Usually there is a pretty spectacular view from Burnout Point, but as Peggy said, the fog and mist were a blessing, since we didn't have to see the devastation from the logging activity. From this point we headed down on the trail that leads to Lost Lake, and we saw that yesterday's snow had created some beautiful patterns on the mossy trees.
We stopped at Fragrance Lake for a quick lunch and then visited the viewpoint on our way back down, which added about a half mile to the trip on our way back to the Clayton Beach trailhead. There wasn't much of a view of Samish Bay, but the skies were beginning to show little patches of blue and the clouds were lifting.
This little side trip adds around an extra half-mile to our entire hike, so it was nice to visit it and hope for a view. Once we left and began to head back down to the cars, we had descended around a quarter mile when Linda, who was on the trail in front of me, stopped dead and said, "Uh-oh. I left my poles at the overlook!" She had had a nagging feeling that she had forgotten something and when she realized what it was, she said she would run back up to get them, not wanting us to have to wait too long for her. Mike then said, "You want to borrow mine?" Well, you guessed it: Mike had picked up Linda's poles and he and her husband Ward had been following behind, wondering when she would realize her mistake. (Mike doesn't usually use poles.) We all laughed and continued on down, but I warned Linda I would be forced to write about it. She agreed it was too good to pass up.
I asked Ward to take a picture of me as we were leaving the area, since I realized I'd forgotten to get one last week and we were almost back to the cars before remembering today. We covered a little more than nine miles and around 2,000 feet elevation gain and loss. It's been a really good day, and I'm happy I went and didn't stay home because of possible bad weather. The picture reminds me that I'm due for a haircut.