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494 triplogs

Oct 15 2019
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 Guides 34
 Routes 208
 Photos 1,855
 Triplogs 519

33 male
 Joined Aug 16 2006
 Portland, OR
Skookum Lake, OR 
Skookum Lake, OR
 
Hiking avatar Oct 15 2019
keepmoving
Hiking5.00 Miles 1,830 AEG
Hiking5.00 Miles   2 Hrs   30 Mns   2.00 mph
1,830 ft AEG5 LBS Pack
 
no photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Last minute decision to get out of town and squeeze in a late afternoon hike. Nice pleasant drive out to the trailhead with lots of fall color. The trail to Skookum Lake isn't very exciting- it's got some decent views from the summit of Thunder Mountain, but overall it's really not worth the drive. The lake itself is fairly small and has quite a few downed trees in it. Still felt good to get out and stretch the legs a bit though.
foliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observationfoliage observation
Autumn Foliage Observation Substantial
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Oct 06 2019
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 Guides 34
 Routes 208
 Photos 1,855
 Triplogs 519

33 male
 Joined Aug 16 2006
 Portland, OR
Gold Butte Lookout, OR 
Gold Butte Lookout, OR
 
Backpack avatar Oct 06 2019
keepmoving
Backpack2.24 Miles 761 AEG
Backpack2.24 Miles2 Days         
761 ft AEG
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Got lucky and managed to reserve a night at Gold Butte Lookout. It's about a 2.5 hour drive from Portland and well worth the drive. The fall colors are really starting to show. Views from the top were phenomenal- I could see Mt. Hood, Olallie Butte, Mt. Jefferson, Three Finger Jack, Mt. Washington, and the Three Sisters. Temps dropped into the upper 30s overnight but it never really felt that cold. Clear skies and zero wind, definitely surpassed my expectations.
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2 archives
Sep 12 2019
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 Guides 34
 Routes 208
 Photos 1,855
 Triplogs 519

33 male
 Joined Aug 16 2006
 Portland, OR
Strawberry Lakes Loop TrailNortheast, OR
Northeast, OR
Backpack avatar Sep 12 2019
keepmoving
Backpack20.17 Miles 4,443 AEG
Backpack20.17 Miles2 Days         
4,443 ft AEG15 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Quick overnight loop through the Strawberry Mountain Wilderness before the weather turns bad. Got a late start and started hiking a little bit before 1800. Made it to Slide Lake and was just able to get my campsite set up around dusk and check out the upper lake before it got completely dark. Had the entire Slide Lakes Basin to myself. Enjoyed a small fire and watched the stars for a bit before heading to bed.

Woke up to a nice soft pink sunrise. The view across the lake to the surrounding peaks was quite impressive. I could have lingered longer, but I had a long day of hiking and still had to make the drive back to Portland, so I hit the trail around 0630.

The trail heads uphill from Slide Lakes and the views open up very quickly. The trail goes over a small pass where a short use trail provides access to an adjacent peak with 360 views of the surrounding area. Beyond the ridgeline, the trail quickly loses elevation, passing through a burned area as it approaches High Lake.

Continuing past High Lake, I encountered a couple of bow hunters near the Roads End Trailhead. They would be the only people I would see all day until I got back down to the main Strawberry Lake area. I took the detour up to Strawberry Peak- where I passed through hundreds (thousands?) of butterflies that were fluttering south with the wind. I had the summit to myself, save for two mountain goats who were hunkered down on the far side of the peak trying to stay out of the wind.

The descent from Strawberry Mountain down to Little Strawberry Lake felt like it took forever. I was a bit disappointed by the lake itself- it was covered in patches of scum, but the view of the sheer cliff wall on the far side of the lake was quite stunning. Beyond Little Strawberry Lake I picked up pace, pausing only briefly at the main lake before making my way back to the trailhead.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated
99% of the flowers are finished. There are a couple of stragglers still blooming, but summer is definetely over.
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Sep 06 2019
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 Guides 34
 Routes 208
 Photos 1,855
 Triplogs 519

33 male
 Joined Aug 16 2006
 Portland, OR
Heavens Gate Lookout, ID 
Heavens Gate Lookout, ID
 
Hiking avatar Sep 06 2019
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Hiking0.40 Miles
Hiking0.40 Miles
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
After finishing up the 7 Devils Loop, I drove up to the Heavens Gate Lookout. The view from the parking lot alone is breathtaking, but I followed the short trail up to the lookout to get the full 360. The lookout was being staffed for the fire season and I was invited inside to sign the guestbook and check things out. Very cool.
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Sep 04 2019
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 Guides 34
 Routes 208
 Photos 1,855
 Triplogs 519

33 male
 Joined Aug 16 2006
 Portland, OR
Seven Devils LoopNortheast, OR
Northeast, OR
Backpack avatar Sep 04 2019
keepmoving
Backpack34.00 Miles 7,295 AEG
Backpack34.00 Miles3 Days         
7,295 ft AEG19 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Backpacked the 7 Devils Loop over 3 Days. Did the loop clockwise and opted to finish using the alternate exit along the climbers route above Sheep Lake.

Wed 9/4. 10.8 Miles
Arrived mid afternoon and started by following the trail towards Cannon Lake. Immediately passed a couple who were just finishing up doing the very same loop and briefly chatted with them before continuing on. Shortly after that I passed 2 hunters on horseback and their mule team in tow.

Took a brief break at Cannon Lake to refill my water and have a quick snack. I had the lake all to myself and would have gladly spent the night, but I had plenty of daylight left and wanted to get more miles under my belt, so I continued on. The trail past the lake passes through several burned sections that afford good views of the Seven Devils Peaks and the valley to the south.

Arrived at the unmarked junction for Dog Lake about an hour before sunset and headed up to the lake. The "trail" here is more of a route- its overgrown in several places and littered with downed trees. It's also exceptionally steep and only gets steeper as you near the lake. Fortunately, the lake itself is worth the effort and was very scenic- nestled in a glacial bowl at the base of the Twin Imps, the hillside was even starting to turn crimson now that summer is beginning to wrap up.

There was already one other person camped at the lake, so I opted to let him enjoy the solitude and I dropped back down to the lower junction to camp for the night.

Thur 9/5. 21 Miles
The trail past Dog Lake is completely dry until it reaches Baldy Lake, 9 miles later, so I got a super early start and loaded up on water. The views through this section were phenomenal and just when I thought they couldn't get any better- I climbed over the pass above Horse Heaven and was treated to views of Hells Canyon. The clouds were beginning to build for the day, but I could actually make out the distant peaks of the Wallowas to the west.

Eventually I arrived at Baldy Lake to find it completely empty. I had a nice lunch, did laundry, refilled my water, and explored the surrounding campsites. I found 3 brand new large fuel canisters abandoned at one of the campsites, so I picked them up and added them to my pack (+2.5lbs).

Continuing along the loop, the clouds continued to build and it gently sprinkled off and on. I took the side trail up to Echo Lake and He Devil Lake (again, both completely devoid of people). Beyond the Echo Lake drainage I spotted a bear rooting through the berry bushes a little ways below the trail.

Eventually I arrived at the main turn off the Sheep Lake and the heart of the 7 Devils area. I hadn't seen anyone all day, so I was surprised to round the corner of the trail and find myself face to face with a saddle-less horse and no rider in sight. We had a brief stare down and the horse was soon joined by 2 curious mules. They seemed a bit skittish, so I just stood around and waited for a bit until their owner came chasing after them. Apparently they had been camped out in the meadow with their herd when the horse decided to wander off. The owner informed me that the horse is a bit of a free spirit- and has been known to walk the 7+ miles back to the trailhead all by himself when he feels like it.

The 3 miles to Sheep Lake are some of the best along the whole loop- passing multiple lakes while the peaks tower over the trail, it goes by super fast. I arrived at Sheep Lake to find a group of 3 already camped out on the shore. Had a good chat with them- apparently they are locals who have been visiting the lake for years, so they were very helpful and they gave me information about the climbers route. As a thank you (and out of my own selfish desire to lighten my own pack), I gave them one of the fuel canisters that I had found earlier in the day. Then, at their direction, I continued along the far shore of the lake to find some secluded campsites right at the base of the climbers route. I knew a storm was scheduled to arrive the next morning, so I wanted to be able to break camp, climb over the ridge, and get back to the trailhead ASAP.

Shortly after crawling into bed for the night, the storm arrived. Almost 12 hours ahead of schedule. At first it was just flashes of lightning in the distance, but soon the wind picked up, only to be followed by rain and thunder. It continued off and on until the morning.

Fri 9.6. 2.2 Miles
Between the noise of the rain/wind and my anxiety over whether the climbers route would even be a viable option in the morning, I really didn't get much sleep. I was up long before first light and had my pack ready to go as I waited under the shelter of my tent. As soon as their was a lull in the wind, I broke down the tent and hit the trail. It was still just dark enough to need my headlamp for the first couple minutes and for the first part of the climb up the talus slope.

As I climbed up the ridge the wind continued to subside and the clouds actually started to part. There was no rain, no lightning, and the path was much easier to follow than I had expected. Passing over the notch in the ridge, I was treated to fantastic views of Mirror Lake and got to watch the sun break through the clouds. I dropped down the far side of the ridge, passed through the 7 Devils Campground where everyone else was still sleeping, and arrived back at my truck right around 7am.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Light
Some Lupine, Fire Weed, Indian Paintbrush, and verious other wildflowers still blooming, but most are beginning to die off.
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Sep 03 2019
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 Guides 34
 Routes 208
 Photos 1,855
 Triplogs 519

33 male
 Joined Aug 16 2006
 Portland, OR
Killamacue Lake, OR 
Killamacue Lake, OR
 
Backpack avatar Sep 03 2019
keepmoving
Backpack6.00 Miles 1,859 AEG
Backpack6.00 Miles2 Days         
1,859 ft AEG14.5 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Driving out to the Seven Devils area in Idaho, I decided to break up the long 8+ hour drive by doing a quick overnight at the midway point, just outside Baker City. I enjoyed my hike along the Elkhorn Crest last week, so after scouring topo maps for some other hikes in the area I located this one.

The trailhead is unmarked along a 4x4 road. I arrived about an hour before sunset and had the trail to myself. Pretty steep uphill to get to the lake. Water level was super low being the end of summer and the peak of dry season. There are some larch trees around the lake that might be pretty in fall, but probably not worth making a dedicated drive to check it out as there are other, better locations, much closer to Portland.
Named place
Named place
Killamacue Lake
Meteorology
Meteorology
Sunset
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Aug 29 2019
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 Guides 34
 Routes 208
 Photos 1,855
 Triplogs 519

33 male
 Joined Aug 16 2006
 Portland, OR
High Camp via Killen Creek TrailVolcano, WA
Volcano, WA
Backpack avatar Aug 29 2019
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Backpack17.23 Miles 3,877 AEG
Backpack17.23 Miles2 Days         
3,877 ft AEG15 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Parked at Muddy Meadow Trailhead and did a clockwise overnight loop up to High Camp via Killen Creek Trail. Recent storms had driven most people away from the mountain, so both trailheads were completely empty when I started my hike. Drizzled on me during the road walk to connect the trails, but eventually the sun broke out.

Gorgeous views of Mt. Adams and the surrounding peaks as the trail climbs above timberline. Continued past the trails end and set up camp at the base of a glacial tarn. Super windy overnight and lots of rain, but it just added to the experience. Bad weather just makes the sunset and sunrise that much more spectacular.

Base Weight: 13.4lbs
Starting Pack Weight: 15.9lbs
Flora
Flora
Whitebark Pine
Named place
Named place
Mount Adams Mount Rainier
Meteorology
Meteorology
Glacier
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Isolated
Lower elevation wildflowers are past their peak. But there are still some Lupine, Indian Paintbrush, and Penstemon blooming
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Aug 26 2019
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 Guides 34
 Routes 208
 Photos 1,855
 Triplogs 519

33 male
 Joined Aug 16 2006
 Portland, OR
Elkhorn Crest TrailNortheast, OR
Northeast, OR
Backpack avatar Aug 26 2019
keepmoving
Backpack10.82 Miles 2,000 AEG
Backpack10.82 Miles2 Days         
2,000 ft AEG15 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Followed Elkhorn Crest from the Marble Pass Trailhead up to Twin Lakes. Beautifully sunny clear day, felt like 70 degrees with a nice breeze. Bagged Elkhorn Peak along the way and then set up camp at the lower (larger) twin lake for the night. Had the whole lakes basin to myself, save for a couple dozen mountain goats that spent the night wandering through my camp and noisily galloping through the meadow behind my camp. Very scenic area with multiple campsites to choose from- however none of them are very large or flat, which makes setting up a tent a bit problematic. Overnight lows only dipped into the upper 40s/low 50s, very pleasant.

The next morning the goats got a bit more curious and started to encroach upon my camp and encircle me as I packed things up. As my footprint got smaller they became progressively braver and inched closer to me, so I hastily threw everything in my pack and departed before we had an altercation.
Fauna
Fauna
Mountain Goat
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation None
Wildflowers are well past their peak. Summer is starting to wrap up in the high country, fall is just around the corner.
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Aug 07 2019
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 Guides 34
 Routes 208
 Photos 1,855
 Triplogs 519

33 male
 Joined Aug 16 2006
 Portland, OR
Seven Lakes BasinOlympic, WA
Olympic, WA
Backpack avatar Aug 07 2019
keepmoving
Backpack18.72 Miles 4,979 AEG
Backpack18.72 Miles2 Days         
4,979 ft AEG17 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Overnight trip with Kaila on the Seven Lakes Basin Trail in Olympic National Park. Left Portland early Tuesday morning and made the long drive up to the trailhead- stopping along the way to pick up our permit at the ranger station in Port Angeles and taking a quick detour up to Hurricane Ridge to take in the views.

Started hiking a bit before 1800 and set off to make our way to Sol Duc Park. There was quite a bit of traffic between the trailhead and the Sol Duc Falls junction, but the trail immediately thins out as soon as one passes that first junction. We were not in a hurry to reach our camp, but were still aware that we were slowly running out of daylight and didn't want to stumble into camp by headlight, so we didn't dawdle. We managed to have just enough light to arrive at the marker for Sol Duc Park shortly after the sun set, then we donned our headlamps and went about choosing a camping spot and setting up for the evening. After a well deserved dinner we walked out to the meadow and watched the stars for a bit before retiring to bed for the evening.

The next morning we broke camp and were on trail right around 0730. The trail quickly exits the forest and climbs through the head of the valley before popping over a ridge and arriving at Heart Lake. Beyond Heart Lake, the trail climbs up to the High Divide and the views truly open up. The trail weaves its way along the ridgeline, providing alternate views of the Hoh River valley and Mount Olympus to the south and the Lakes Basin to the north. This section is spectacular and we took plenty of time soaking in the views.

As we approached Bogachiel Peak we started to hear word of Mountain Goats in the area and went into high alert- scouring the hillsides and cliffs in hope to spot the elusive animals. Then, quite suddenly, we encountered a group of them as we descended a set of switchbacks a little ways before the Lunch Lake Junction. It was 5 adults and 2 baby goats and they were slowly picking their way along the trail, grazing on grasses and really paying us no mind. The trail was too steep to provide us an opportunity to pass them, so we followed behind them at a respectable distance for the better part of an hour until they decided to step off trail by the Lunch Lake Junction and allowed us to pass.

We dropped down to Lunch Lake and had a quick break and refilled our water bottles. The day was starting to warm up and we were both getting pretty tired. I think being held up behind the goats for such a long time had thrown off our grove and frazzled our nerves a bit. As we climbed back up towards the main trail after our break I joked about how it would feel to get held up in traffic behind the goats again, but figured there was no way that could possibly happen, right? WRONG! Not more than 5 minutes after turning back onto the main trail we got caught up behind the same group of goats, yet again ](*,) . This time they decided to head our direction, so we had to slowly retreat back up trail for several minutes until we were able to find a safe location where we could divert around the group and pass safely.

Once we were past the goats the rest of the hike was uneventful. It really seems to take forever to drop down from the High Divide towards the trailhead once you are back in the forest and the views are gone. Overall though, this is a spectacular hike and we both thoroughly enjoyed it. If I had to do it over, it might be nice to add a 3rd day so that we could have spent more time enjoying the lakes basin, but 2 days is still thoroughly enjoyable and I don't feel that we really missed out on anything.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Moderate
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Jul 29 2019
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 Guides 34
 Routes 208
 Photos 1,855
 Triplogs 519

33 male
 Joined Aug 16 2006
 Portland, OR
Marion LakeNorth Central, OR
North Central, OR
Backpack avatar Jul 29 2019
keepmoving
Backpack62.60 Miles 9,761 AEG
Backpack62.60 Miles4 Days         
9,761 ft AEG22.72 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Spent 4 days doing a giant loop around the Mt. Jefferson Wilderness. I had originally packed food for 5 days, but was moving faster than planned and skipped one of my side trips to reduce the length down to 4 days instead. Had fantastic weather the whole time- clear skies, day time temps in the upper 70s/low 80s, nighttime lows only occasionally dipped into the mid 40s.

Day 1- TH to Lake of the Woods, 4.8 miles, 1432 AEG
Intentionally got a late start and just did a short hike in to Lake of the Woods. It sits in the middle of a burn zone, but it's still a charming little lake with a nice view of Mt. Jefferson. Since I had plenty of daylight left, I explored the surrounding area- taking in the view from a nearby ridge and exploring uphill to check out Whiskey Lake.

Day 2- Lake of the Woods to Wasco Lake, 20.2 miles, 3506 AEG
Stared the day off with an exhausting climb out of the burn zone towards the PCT. The trail was very faint and I spent more time climbing over and crawling under downed trees than I did actually hiking. Definitely a great way to break ones spirit first thing in the morning. Fortunately the views opened up as soon as I obtained the ridgeline which made up for the bad start to the day.

Heading south on the PCT I felt like a fish trying to swim upstream, I passed several dozen hikers all headed northbound. Many appeared to be thru hikers, but there were the occasional groups of backpackers out for shorter trips like myself. I dropped down to Carl Lake and had initially intended to head up to Table Lake, but the mosquitoes were bad and I was getting tired, so I opted to return to the PCT and keep heading south. Ran into the wilderness ranger and had a nice chat with her- she said I definitely missed out by skipping Table Lake, so I will have to return to check that out sometime.

Made camp early at Wasco Lake just south of the PCT on the north side of 3 Finger Jack. Went for a swim, had an early dinner, then retired to bed.


Day 3- Wasco Lake to Lower Dixie Lake, 23.5 miles, 3190 AEG

Woke up to the light illuminating 3 Finger Jack over the lake. Hastily packed my gear and then headed out to check out Canyon Creek Meadows and the glacial lake at the base of 3 Finger Jack. Beautiful area and the meadow was full of Lupine.

Continuing past 3 Finger Jack the trail leaves the crowds of day hikers behind and enters yet another burn zone. It was getting pretty warm, so when I reached Booth Lake I stopped for lunch and went for another swim. Past the lake the trail continues thru the burn zone for quiet a while until it rejoins the PCT and eventually enters the forest again. Pushed for about 8 miles without really ever taking another break, which was definitely a mistake. Eventually stopped at Lower Berkeley Lake and took some time to have a snack and cool down before pushing on.

Really didn't have much of a plan as to where to camp for the night. My initial though was to head to Santiam Lake, but I wanted something a bit more secluded, so I kinda wandered a bit until I found a small mostly overgrown campsite at Lower Dixie Lake to call home for the night. Definitely pushed myself harder than I should have and should have taken more breaks during the day.

Day 4- Lower Dixie Lake back to the TH, 14.1 miles, 1633 AEG
Started the day by trekking up to the top of Red Butte to admire the views, then dropped back down towards 8 Lakes Basin and more burn zone. Felt very fortunate that most of the trail at this point was generally downhill as I was starting to run out of steam.

Made one final push up to Marion Mountain which provided almost 360 degree view of the surrounding area. Very cool way to end the trip by being able to look at the entire wilderness area and spot the distant points that I passed through during my 4 day trek. Then dropped back downhill and returned to the trailhead.

Base Pack Weight- 12.72lbs
Total with 5 days of food and 16oz of water- 22.72lbs
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Moderate
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Jul 24 2019
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 Guides 34
 Routes 208
 Photos 1,855
 Triplogs 519

33 male
 Joined Aug 16 2006
 Portland, OR
Mount Saint Helens RimVolcano, WA
Volcano, WA
Hiking avatar Jul 24 2019
keepmoving
Hiking7.61 Miles 4,514 AEG
Hiking7.61 Miles   4 Hrs   10 Mns   1.83 mph
4,514 ft AEG8 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
After finishing my Vanson Peak backpacking trip I made the two hour drive south to Climbers Bivouac to do the summer route to the top of Mt. St Helens. Up until this time I had only ever done the winter route. Set a good pace to the top, arriving in 2 hours 19 minutes and had the summit all to myself). After a nice break at the top I ran/plunge stepped my way back down through the scree and lava fields. Once I hit solid ground back on the ptarmigan trail I ran the rest of the way back, finishing the whole trip in 4 hours 10 minutes.
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Jul 23 2019
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 Guides 34
 Routes 208
 Photos 1,855
 Triplogs 519

33 male
 Joined Aug 16 2006
 Portland, OR
Vanson Peak TrailVolcano, WA
Volcano, WA
Backpack avatar Jul 23 2019
keepmoving
Backpack21.33 Miles 4,320 AEG
Backpack21.33 Miles2 Days         
4,320 ft AEG16.5 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Did a loop starting from Goat Mountain Trail #217 counterclockwise up to Vanson Peak and back along Green River Trail #213. The day started out with temps in the mid 70s and partly cloudy. From the trailhead, the trail immediately starts climbing, but it's well shaded and wasn't as terrible as I expected.

Once I gained the ridgeline views immediately opened up and I snacked on wild strawberries as I made my way to Deadmans Lake. Deadmans Lake is a bit of a let down- just a large featureless forested lake, although it looks like it would make for a fantastic swimming destination the clouds rolled in and the temperatures dropped right as I arrived so I skipped the swim. Continuing on to Vanson Lake a thick layer of fog started to obscure the forest, I stopped at the lake for lunch and to refill my bottles, then headed up to Vanson Peak to set up camp and hope for better views in the morning.

It lightly drizzled off and on overnight and the clouds never really parted. The clouds briefly parted enough for me to catch views of distant Riffe Lake, but overall it was a bit disappointing. I packed up and completed the loop by dropping down into the valley and following the Green River Trail back to the trailhead.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Moderate
Lupine, Avalanche Lilly, Indian paintbrush, etc...
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Jul 18 2019
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 Guides 34
 Routes 208
 Photos 1,855
 Triplogs 519

33 male
 Joined Aug 16 2006
 Portland, OR
Horseshoe Meadow TrailVolcano, WA
Volcano, WA
Backpack avatar Jul 18 2019
keepmoving
Backpack19.32 Miles 3,157 AEG
Backpack19.32 Miles2 Days         
3,157 ft AEG13 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked linked
Partners none no partners
First time exploring the Mt. Adams area. Set out to do a nice loop on the west side of the mountain to see as much as I could over a short 2 day trip. Started from the Miners Creek Trailhead, followed the PCT north to the Riley Creek South Trail junction. Followed the Riley Creek South Trail north to trail #64 where I turned east and started to head up towards the lower slopes of Mt. Adams. Views gradually opened up and I passed multiple tarns and small meadows. Mosquitoes were pretty sparse, only making their presence known when I stopped at two spots along trail #64.

Rejoining the PCT on the west slopes of Mt. Adams, I took my time heading south and enjoying the views. Went for a swim in a mountain lake and continued my way south to Horseshoe Meadow. The meadow was gorgeous with Indian Paintbrush in bloom, but I did a quick loop down to Lookingglass Lake before returning to set up camp. Very windy in the meadow overnight, but my tent held up just fine. Got into the low 40s/upper 30s overnight.

Woke up early to hike out and make the drive home since I had to work later in the evening. Gave a lift to a couple of PCT thruhikers (Pidgeon and HikerBox) that were hitching a ride to Trout Lake to resupply. One of them from Norway and the other from Austria.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Substantial
Lupine, Indian Paintbrush, Columbia Lily, etc...
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Jul 15 2019
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 Guides 34
 Routes 208
 Photos 1,855
 Triplogs 519

33 male
 Joined Aug 16 2006
 Portland, OR
Pamelia Lake, OR 
Pamelia Lake, OR
 
Backpack avatar Jul 15 2019
keepmoving
Backpack18.67 Miles 3,298 AEG
Backpack18.67 Miles2 Days         
3,298 ft AEG20 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Headed out to do a 70 mile/4 day loop through the Mt. Jefferson Wilderness and around Three Finger Jack. Unfortunately, an unforeseen storm broke my spirit and caused me to cut the trip short.

Started from the Pamelia Lake Trailhead at about 1330. It was overcast, but the weather forecast showed it was supposed to be sunny and in the 70s until some scattered light rain arrived on Thursday. However, shortly after Pamelia Lake it started to lightly rain and it only increased as I climbed up to Hunt's Cove. Fortunately I brought my full rain gear, but I really didn't feel like spending the next several days dealing with rain, so I made a quick decision to cut my loop short and head over to Coyote and Shale Lakes for the evening. I got a nice campsite tucked back in the trees between the two lakes and had an early dinner while I waited for the rain to subside, then I spent the evening wandering around the lakes and watching the clouds blow over Mt. Jefferson.

Woke to clearer skies in the morning and briefly considered continuing on my longer trip as planned, but I didn't feel like dealing with the hassle of drying out wet gear and having to backtrack several hours to get back on course, so I headed back down.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Moderate
Bear Grass, Lupine, Indian Paintbrush, etc...
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Jul 09 2019
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 Guides 34
 Routes 208
 Photos 1,855
 Triplogs 519

33 male
 Joined Aug 16 2006
 Portland, OR
Loowit TrailVolcano, WA
Volcano, WA
Backpack avatar Jul 09 2019
keepmoving
Backpack29.25 Miles 6,259 AEG
Backpack29.25 Miles2 Days         
6,259 ft AEG19 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
July 9th
Started the loop around Mt. Saint Helens from the June Lake Trailhead on an overcast Tuesday afternoon. Although there are multiple access points to the trail, June Lake is both the most convenient access point from Portland, as well as the shortest connection to the Loowit Trail, so it was an easy choice for me. My plan for the first day was to go clockwise and camp at the South Fork of the Toutle River, where I could filter water. Then on day two I would do the whole blast zone and complete the loop.

Around the south side of the mountain, the Loowit passes through varied terrain- lava fields, dense forest, and wide open grasslands. It's never boring and I never knew what view to expect next. Just a couple of miles into my hike it started to lightly rain, so I donned my rain gear and plodded on. There are several steep gullies that the trail crosses through, some of which have rope set up to make the ascent/descent easier, but I didn't find any of them to be super difficult.

I arrived at the South Fork just a bit before dark. By this point it was steadily raining- so after filtering some water I quickly set up my tent and retreated inside for the remainder of the evening.

July 10th
I woke up around 0430 to a break in the rain. Although I was tempted to lay in bed a bit longer, I decided it was best to break camp while the rain was stopped than to risk getting more sleep and have to deal with the rain later. I threw my wet gear into my pack, filtered water one last time at the river, then crossed it and headed up the trail on the far side.

The climb out of the Toutle River valley was a bit rough on legs that hadn't fully warmed up yet, but the view from the top was spectacular. A low fog was blowing over the valley and added a bit of an ominous feel to the scene. Once I reached the top, the trail began to level out and passed through small patches of meadows and wildflowers. I spotted my first couple of elk and then a short time later I spotted a couple mountain goats on a scree slope above the river.

Continuing through the blast zone, I passed herd after herd of elk. I counted almost 100 of them before I decided there were just too many and gave up. I had expected this area of the trail to be more rugged and devoid of life, but there are quite a few wildflowers sprinkled throughout the area. I made the scenic detour up to Loowit Falls, but the fog was so thick I didn't get a good look at them, although I did surprise a family of goats that were lingering in the middle of the trail.

Approaching Windy Pass the sun finally decided to come our (briefly) and I was able to catch a glimpse of Spirit lake. After a brief break at the top, I quickly descended down to the Plains of Abraham as the wind kicked up, clouds blew in, and it started raining again. I had already hiked the Loowit on the east side of the mountain back in 2014, so I didn't mind just putting my head down and plodding on in the rain. Before I knew it I was back at the June Lake junction and then it was a quick trip back down past the day hikers to the trailhead.
wildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observationwildflower observation
Wildflowers Observation Substantial
Lupine, Phlox, Indian Paintbrush, Beargrass, etc...
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Jun 30 2019
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 Guides 34
 Routes 208
 Photos 1,855
 Triplogs 519

33 male
 Joined Aug 16 2006
 Portland, OR
Discovery Point TrailSouth, OR
South, OR
Hiking avatar Jun 30 2019
keepmoving
Hiking0.20 Miles 50 AEG
Hiking0.20 Miles
50 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Short stroll along the trail with Kaila to take in the sights. I always forget just how massive it truly is and how blue the water is. It's just surreal, words and pictures really cannot come close to explaining it.
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Jun 30 2019
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 Guides 34
 Routes 208
 Photos 1,855
 Triplogs 519

33 male
 Joined Aug 16 2006
 Portland, OR
Clearwater Falls, OR 
Clearwater Falls, OR
 
Hiking avatar Jun 30 2019
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Hiking0.05 Miles
Hiking0.05 Miles
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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On our way to Tokette Falls after Crater Lake we happened to spot a sign for Clearwater Falls and decided to pull over to check it out. Very pretty waterfall that is visible from the parking lot, definitely worth the stop.
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Jun 30 2019
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 Guides 34
 Routes 208
 Photos 1,855
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33 male
 Joined Aug 16 2006
 Portland, OR
Toketee FallsSouth, OR
South, OR
Hiking avatar Jun 30 2019
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Hiking0.83 Miles 194 AEG
Hiking0.83 Miles
194 ft AEG
 no routesno photosets
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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Another quick stop on our way back from Crater Lake. Interesting waterfall, but having just visited Crater Lake my expectations were set a bit too high, so the waterfall was a bit disappointing in comparison. Definitely better to visit on a weekday- the viewing platform is too small for the number of people that visit on weekends.
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Jun 29 2019
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 Guides 34
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33 male
 Joined Aug 16 2006
 Portland, OR
Salt Creek Falls - Diamond Creek Falls TrailSouth, OR
South, OR
Hiking avatar Jun 29 2019
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Hiking0.14 Miles
Hiking0.14 Miles
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
Partners none no partners
Quick stop to check out Salt Creek Falls while making the drive out to backpack in the Sky Lakes Wilderness. We just followed the short paved trail around the top of the waterfall to take in the view before jumping back in the truck and hitting the road. Definitely worth the quick stop if you are in the area.
Named place
Named place
Salt Creek Falls
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Jun 29 2019
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 Guides 34
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33 male
 Joined Aug 16 2006
 Portland, OR
Seven Lakes Basin And Sky Lakes TrailSouth, OR
South, OR
Backpack avatar Jun 29 2019
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Backpack11.16 Miles 1,048 AEG
Backpack11.16 Miles2 Days         
1,048 ft AEG18.3 LBS Pack
 
1st trip
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Drove down to the Sky Lakes Wilderness with Kaila for her first ever backpacking trip. The plan was to drive through Crater Lake on our way back home after the trip, and this area is only about an hour away from the park so it matched up perfectly with our plans. Additionally, there are multiple trailheads within close proximity of one another that access various basins within the wilderness, so we had easy alternative options if our initial choice didn't pan out due to snow or other trail conditions.

We tried starting the trip from the Cherry Creek Trailhead, but we were swarmed so quickly with massive hordes of mosquitoes that we turned around and jogged back to the truck before we even made it a half mile in. I had already pre-treated my clothing with Permethrin and was wearing Picaridin on top of that, but the bugs didn't care at all. I've never seen clouds of mosquitoes so thick before. When we left the trailhead there were still two other cars parked in the lot- I can only assume their occupants were eaten alive by the mosquitoes somewhere deep in the wilderness :scared: .

Fortunately I had a backup plan with the Sevenmile Marsh Trailhead only 30 minutes away. I also knew it was about 1000' higher in elevation than Cherry Creek, so I was optimistic that the bugs would be more manageable. We arrived at the trailhead and reapplied more insect repellent before cautiously heading up trail. Although not perfectly bug free, the mosquitoes were far fewer than what we had initially encountered. Their numbers would sporadically increase and decrease for seemingly no reason as we gained elevation, but at least it was bearable.

Arriving at the Lakes Basin, we did a quick counter clockwise loop around the lakes to scout out campsites. Cliff Lake appeared to be our best option, but the mosquito pressure along the shore was pretty bad. On a whim, I investigated a small use trail up a short ridge on the northeast corner of the lake and found us a site that was mostly bug free and provided fantastic views. We set up camp and had a quick dinner in front of the fire while the sun set. To our great relief the mosquitoes completely disappeared as the evening wore on. After dinner, we walked 1/2 mile up the trail to check out South Lake as it started to get dark. Then we returned to camp to sit around the fire and stargaze for the next couple of hours before heading to bed.

The next morning I woke up about an hour before Kaila. I spent my time watching the sun illuminate Devils Peak and the surrounding forest while I did chores and started to get our breakfast ready. Although our camp had been mosquito free since the sun set the night before, their numbers started to increase again shortly after Kaila woke up. So after a quick breakfast we broke camp and scurried down trail to the mosquito free trailhead.
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average hiking speed 1.91 mph
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WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

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