Thursday, June 28, 2018

Chanterelle trail and beyond

Today's group, me behind the camera
Based on the forecast, today's fourteen Senior Trailblazers opted to stay in the Chuckanuts instead of heading up the Mt. Baker Highway to hike in the rain. As Al put it, "it's one thing to hike in the rain, but to do it while also hiking in snow is just no fun." The chance of rain in the lowlands was much less, and while we hiked today, we didn't have any rain OR snow.
Lake Whatcom from the Chanterelle Overlook
 From here, we headed up some steep trails that took us to the old logging road that heads up the mountain toward some good views (if it hadn't been overcast). All along the road we saw plenty of daisies and foxglove.
Al and Jim, lots of flowers
It stayed overcast for the entire day, with only a few times we cast a shadow. But, as I said, no rain. We went up the road until we got tired and found a nice place to have lunch.
Melanie, Al, Tom settling in for lunch
When we stop after exercise, we tend to get a little cool, so everyone donned extra clothes as we snuggled into our chosen spots for a quick lunch. It wasn't too cold, but we didn't tarry for too long before heading back down the way we had come.
Heading back to the cars
While we hiked back down to the cars, which was mostly downhill after having trudged upwards around 2,000 feet in total, we discussed some of the Pacific Northwest wildlife we deal with every day: slugs. There are several varieties, but the biggest and most interesting (to me) is the banana slug. We saw lots and lots of them today.
Banana slug
This guy is big! If you look carefully you can see his antennae on his (her?) front end and the skirt on the other end that is used for navigation. We discussed whether or not they might be good to eat, and a conversation started about how we could advertise a Slug Cafe, touting the fact that they are free range and cage free. We cracked ourselves up, laughing at our own jokes, and we didn't even have any wine.
Mysterious mushroom
Finally, I saw this lovely mushroom on the way back, and after looking on line I suspect it might be a "shaggy parasol" mushroom, or a false parasol. One is delicious, and the other highly poisonous. It hasn't got a bite on it from any critters. Do you know what it might be? It looks a bit like an alien to me.

When we returned to the cars, it began to rain lightly, but not a drop until then. we covered more than nine miles and 2,000 feet up and down, and we congratulated ourselves on having made the right choice for the day. It was fun, safe, and as always, great to be with such fine friends.


  1. Splendid views from the high ground!

  2. Another wonderful hike Jan. Enjoy that glass of wine!

  3. I won't be eating at any restaurant you open!

  4. Those Foxgloves are amazing, I would have been stuck there for a long time. I hear slugs are just protein...they eat them on Naked and Afraid and don't die. I don't like I would not be tempted to eat any of the ones in nature...remember that Clint Eastwood movie...where he eats poisonous mushrooms? Looks like a great hike ..especially the flowers:)

  5. Just think if you'd chosen the other hike you wouldn't have seen all the slugs and would have missed all the good jokes.

  6. Love the foxgloves and daisies. My vegetarian status means the banana slug is safe from me. Funghi are a different question. I do love them - but am careful.
    Enjoy your wine.

  7. That slug! Talk about camouflage! And that mushroom is one of the oddest things I've ever seen...

  8. Yes, I remember the old joke: "The Pacific Northwest. Two millions slugs can't be wrong." LOL

  9. Goodness that slug looks like a child's musical toy. Wonder if they are edible?

  10. I have never seen a slug for real. Only a couple pictures from you over the years. They are fascinating, but I wouldn't want them eating up my garden and I'd be afraid I'd step on one by accident while hiking. They look huge enough you probably can't miss them. ;)

  11. Long and steep, and with "wild life! Good for you!
    That mushroom is super cool.

  12. I love the greenery. That slug looks like a pen or pencil to me. Interesting mushroom, it looks like a golf ball.


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