|Fred and Mike on the way to Huntoon Point|
The Senior Trailblazers have decided to add a twice-monthly Monday or Tuesday hike to the High Country for the 2011 season, and today four of us set out to see how the conditions actually are up there. The Bellingham Herald
featured an article this weekend stating "Plenty of Snow in Cascades Means Shorter Hiking Season
." This definitely was NOT what we have been hoping to hear. If you read the article, you'll find that the cool and wet spring, along with lots of late-season snow, means that Artist Point, a very popular place to begin our hikes, will possibly not open for the season -- at all.
This is the road to Artist Point, which stops at the ski area parking lot. We made jokes along the lines of "just gun it, Al, let's see how far we can plow through." Um-hmm. Not very far. We slapped on our snowshoes at the ski area parking lot and set out for Huntoon Point, two miles away from here and a little higher in elevation than Artist Point. The snow was slushy, a little like sno-cone consistency, but it was in the fifties, even without any sign of the sun.
As you can see from our clothing and the sunglasses, it was actually quite toasty and the reflected light off the snow caused me to come home with a sunburned face, and summer's sunlight at 5,000 feet warmed us through the heavy clouds. There is usually an astounding vista here, but we didn't see it at all. This was the best I saw, and I had to capture quickly before it disappeared again.
It almost looks like a black-and-white picture, the colors were so washed out with the sky being almost the same color as the snow. The day was calm and relatively warm, so once we reached Huntoon Point we had lunch and then headed back down to the car. The feeling of the day was a little surreal, with such a monochrome landscape. It was only broken by the colors we added ourselves.
Although it's hard to believe, you are looking at both sky and snow as Mike and Fred make their way across the snowy terrain. Snowshoes make a four-mile hike feel like we went twice as far, but it was still a lovely day, with the four of us deciding to check out Hannegan Road on our way back down to Bellingham. Once we left the High Country and got down below 3,000 feet, the greenery exploded and I just had to take this picture of a trillium almost past its peak. The three petals and three leaves show why this flower and its beautiful leaves celebrate THREE in its name.
So all in all, it was a good day, and I'm looking for something to put on my pink cheeks to help them recover from all that indirect sunshine!
the trillium is beautiful...and all that snow intimidating...wow...it was in the 90s here today...err...ReplyDelete
The snow is amazing. It looks like summer might not ever make it there.ReplyDelete
For a person who very rarely sees snow this was a truly exotic and beautiful post. Thank you lots.ReplyDelete
Hiking across snow in the spring is a very pleasant activity even if it is a lot of work.ReplyDelete
Sadly, I sold my snowshoes this spring. I haven't used them for years.
I guess the spring skiing is still in full force in some areas. and we won't need to worry about a water shortage. I wonder when the wild flower meadows at Paradise on Mt Rainier will be bloominmg. Not by my July 17th birthday, I'm thinking.ReplyDelete
You are totally, definitely amazing! At first I thought you were out in Yellowstone too since I saw Artists Point there and trilliums. So glad you all had such a great time.ReplyDelete
Even with no views it sounds like everyone had a great time. I like the misty, snowy photos. The trillium is beautiful.ReplyDelete
Watch out for avalanches up there.
Walking in snowshoes and viewing trilliums in the same outing... that has never happened here, although a hillside covered with trilliums may look like a dusting of snow has fallen.ReplyDelete
My goodness, that sounds unusual for the end of June, the official summer solstice. It sounds like a neat experience anyway.ReplyDelete
Wow. Surreal, indeed. Love it. It's fun to be in the snow when the temps aren't bad. It must have been a good time.ReplyDelete
I meant to tell you: I love your title. It brought chuckles immediately.ReplyDelete
The snow over the road reminded me of our lava hike on the Big Island. The road was just consumed by it. But at least the snow will melt!ReplyDelete
Great photos. I like them all, but the one of the two guys in the distance has an etheric quality to it.ReplyDelete
That wall of snow is stunning to a Floridian!
Yes, the flowers were from this year. Judging from the snow pack I would say you are going to have to wait a few more weeks to see any blooming hollyhocks.ReplyDelete
I love your photography, DJan! How weird to see hikers dressed so scantily with snow in the background! Wow, incredible!ReplyDelete
Snow? Seriously...this just cooled me right off...it's like almost 95 here this morning already. The snow sure looks good right now. Funny...when we have snow we want summer...summer we want snow.ReplyDelete
Give you geezers a lot of credit for being so adventurous. Seems to me it might be a bit more appealing if there was at least a blue sky above all that snow.
The trillium makes up for all the white stuff!
It's so amazing to me to go from snow to green plants in one day. When we were kids we traveled to Glacier National Park and I remember that feeling well. Touching a glacier in my shorts--chilly--and walking back down and being hot. You live the most fascinating life!! :)ReplyDelete
Yes, you have to be careful at high altitudes! It is the same here with hiking - snow still in the high mountains and many of the favorite hikes are still under snow. I'm surprised you didn't get sunburned legs! You reminded me of all the spring skiiers - often in bikinis.ReplyDelete
Beautiful Trillium..what a snowy hike. It is hard to imagine that the snow will not melt this summer..unreal!ReplyDelete
Sometimes I feel like that in the spring..but it always melts:)
Snow and mist - just fabulous!ReplyDelete
what a gorgeous hike though a bit weird weather wise.ReplyDelete