At last! I have returned to hiking with the Senior Trailblazers after having missed two pretty wonderful hikes. All my energy went into the move, but today I feel that I have begun the next phase to returning to my normal life. This morning, twelve Senior Trailblazers hit the trail at Schreiber's Meadow to hike up to Park Butte on a brilliantly sunny day. The trail to the Park Butte Lookout is filled with many views of Mt. Baker. We only had to hike four miles to get to the lookout, so we got a few geology lessons from Al on the way.
As we climbed, we saw Mt. Baker and the two glaciers that reside on this side of the mountain, as well as the Black Buttes (to the left of snow-covered Baker). The higher we climbed, the more magnificent the view became. We were headed to the Lookout on Park Butte. Here's one of the first views we got of it:
We passed a group that spent the night up there last night. It's a first-come first-served situation, and the six of them witnessed the sunset from there last night, as well as the sunrise this morning, and they said it was simply wonderful. As we climbed we saw lots of other people already up there at the lookout, but they must have seen the twelve of us coming; by the time we got there, they had begun their descent and the lookout was empty. Here's a picture of me on that deck.
The view was amazing, with a 360-degree panorama showing the mountains all around us. Since it was lunchtime, we stopped here to replenish and get ready for the return trip. There was a light breeze; the temperature was in the low 70s, and the brilliant sunshine just wouldn't quit. It was perfect. Linda and Ward had lunch on their favorite rock, and I asked for a picture, which they were glad to allow once they stopped eating for a moment.
After our lunch, we began our descent to the cars. It was simply a beautiful, perfect day, with an 8-mile round trip hike in perfect weather, ascending and descending a mere 2,000 feet (rather than our regular hike of more than twice that elevation). The night before, Wednesday, we had attended a soiree at Jonelle's magnificent condo. She had asked the Trailblazers to come to her place for some libations and a wonderful spread of cheeses and dips (and other wonderful treats) that were to die for. The only hitch was that we were to dress up a bit. Anything but hiking clothes, she said. Most of us wore slightly dressy clothes, as seen here.
Gina, me, Noriko, Peggy, and Norm
Jonelle suggested to Norm that he might be able to dress a bit more formally next time (he's in the orange shirt), and when he showed up for the hike this morning, he was wearing those same shorts BUT with a shirt and tie! Jonelle could hardly stop laughing. The rest of the crowd dressed up more formally last night. Here you can see the most formal.
Our fearless leader Al, our hostess Jonelle, and Steve
We had such a good time last night at her party, and today we had a most wonderful hike. I am feeling incredibly blessed to be a part of this amazing group of people, who not only have a sense of humor, but arrange for us to be outside in the wilderness together. This has been a wonderful day, and now as I finish my post, I am settling in for a nice relaxing evening. Blessings to you!