Thursday, November 15, 2012

Once more in the High Country

Church Mountain trail 15 Nov 12
Al just couldn't stand it, giving up the High Country without one more attempt. Although we met lots of snow on our hike to Goat Mountain last month, and it was supposed to be the last High Country hike of the year, he reasoned that the weather has been mild during the last week, and the snow we encountered then is probably melted from all the rain, so let's blow off our scheduled hike and head for the Church Mountain meadows. And he was so right! Eleven of us Senior Trailblazers drove three cars through the fog to start our hike at the trailhead without a flake of snow or a drop of rain and plenty of sunshine!
We knew that we would hit snow, since this hike starts at about 2,500 feet elevation and climbs relentlessly for another 2,500 feet in three miles until we reach the meadows. There was no thought of going past the meadows toward the summit of Church Mountain, since it was almost noon by the time we got to today's destination. As we ascended, we met more and more snow, and before we came out of the trees to the meadow, we had plenty of snow, and lots of it that was hanging on the trees started falling on our heads as we passed under them.
Stream crossing on our way to the meadows
The weather was mild, with only an occasional breeze. We kept ourselves warm since we were moving uphill continually, and the sun poked out through the trees every once in awhile. Then we reached the meadows and came out into the sun, with this spectacular view.
There is Mt. Baker and our friends the Sisters behind the snow-laden trees. We trudged through knee-deep snow to a nice sunny place where we could enjoy our lunch before heading back down. It was around noon when we stopped to enjoy this view and plopped ourselves down in the snow. We took awhile before we started back, and I took this picture, which could be a Christmas card for next month, don't you think?
It was simply a wonderful day, one we didn't expect to have again this season. Next time I am in the wilderness, I will be on snowshoes, there is no doubt. But today eleven Trailblazers enjoyed a very special day together. Chuckanut Ridge will still be on the schedule for another day, but I am so glad I got to spend this day in the High Country with some of my very best friends.
Sun, snow-covered trees, light layers of clouds, and eleven Seniors in the very best of spirits. We told jokes and sang together, reminisced about things we did as youngsters, and once we got back to our respective homes, I think I can say for every one of us that it was a day to remember.
:-)

15 comments:

Red said...

When I think of my backpacking and hiking days I think about how few people enjoy mountain meadows, bright sunshine and plowing through knee deep snow. Sitting up high and watching the cars below is also quite a treat..

TexWisGirl said...

beautiful! glad you squeezed in one more this season! that last shot is rather heavenly, too.

Brian Miller said...

oh a def christmas card...or that last one..great capture of the light...wow...i am loving all your snow....

Hilary said...

That does sound and look like a perfect day. Your photos are just lovely and that would indeed make a great card.

Trish said...

Gorgeous photos.A perfect day. That is something to relish.

Fun60 said...

What a hike to finish on. You really should think about producing Christmas cards. With scenery like that you could make your fortune.

SaucyKod said...

Shoes before snow-shoes. Great that you got in one more wonderful hike with your friends. Even better with the fabulous photos DJan. I am sure that last photo is a winner on Christmas Card. I think if you checked it out, you could make quite a tidy sum submitting your photos for Greeting Cards. I use my photos all the time to make my own cards for everyone's Birthdays, Anniv. etc, etc. Makes them really personal and I feel my family and friends tend to enjoy that. I have produced some Dilly's, which stirred much laughter. Thank you for a wonderful post with another series of beautiful photos. Take Care

HOOTIN ANNI said...

That top photo and the last photo are astounding!!! Simply gorgeous. I'm glad you all went on a hike...so we could see the spectacular scenery like this. Makes life beautiful!!! And the photos in between are super too....lots of fun, exercise, knee deep snow?!!, and lunch on a snow bank. What could be better?

By the way, a lot of my sketches are linked on my side bar under the easel.

Have a glorious day...I know you made my day with this post. Gorgeous.

Linda Reeder said...

I think it can truly be said that you all did seize the day!

Star said...

Lovely snowy pictures D-Jan. I love how the red and pink hats stand out against the snow. So Christmassy looking today!

gigihawaii said...

Looks good to me!

Rita said...

Gorgeous view--but knee-deep snow! That stuff is exhausting to trudge through! Wow! You guys are all real troopers! :)

Linda Myers said...

Oh, beautiful!

Dee said...

Dear DJan, one of the things for which I'm grateful this Thanksgiving week of 2012 is that I have met you through your two blogs and that I have enjoyed--vicariously--hiking the trails on the mountains of Washington. Your trips and your enthusiasm have enriched my life. Thank you. Peace.

Heidrun Khokhar, KleinsteMotte said...

When I read the posts of your walks I think how foryunate you are that your body lets you. My vision is my biggest hurdle now. I can walk but then I hit things as I miss them:(