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valencia 10-15-2002 10:11 PM

Cascades National Park
Well, just got back yesterday from an amazing weekend down in Washington's Cascade Park. We camped for 2 nights by a river and our campsite had this enormous doug fir on it. Saw a bat there in the evening and in the morning we heard 2 eagles calling each other, music to my ears as well as seeing several American dippers doing their signatory dip on the rocks of the river.
We sampled 2 hikes, the famous Cascade Pass and Thornton Lakes. On the Cascade Pass hike we saw 2 rough legged hawks hovering when we were way up above the world and a 3rd smaller hawk (couldn't identify) chased one of them. Also saw 3 ptarmigans on that same hike as well as several pikas, who didn't seem afraid to show themselves, unlike their Pemberton cousins. And when we got near the top we were able to watch 2 mountaineers practically run up a very steep snow slope to get to the top of a distant peak. I always scan for mountaineers as I love to watch them do their seemingly death defying dances. I'm just a scaredy cat, I guess. I only climb mountains I feel I have a pretty good chance of getting off of. Good motto, I think. The Thornton Lakes hike was good too although we didn't have enough time to explore the area once we got to the lakes.
I'm down there again next year as there seems to be so much to explore of the area and it only took about 2 1/2 hours to get there.

valencia 10-15-2002 10:34 PM

Just thought I'd try to post a couple of images from my trip and see if it works. I'm pretty computer illiterate. Luckily my husband is the programmer!
It's pictures like these and the stories behind them that keep me going through the winter.

Hiker Boy 10-15-2002 11:12 PM

I spend more than 50% of my backpacking trips south of the border. I keep on finding more and more beautiful places to hike in the Cascades and Oly's. Did you get up Sahale Arm when you did Cascade Pass?

Don't let a little thing like winter keep you indoors!

See you on the mountain!

valencia 10-16-2002 11:03 AM

Yes, we went up Sahale Arm. It was sure windy up there. It was pretty busy going up to Cascade Pass but once we continued up we were pretty much alone. What's it like down in the Cascades in the summer? I imagine it's probably pretty busy although I guess some trails are busier than others.

Hiker Boy 10-16-2002 11:45 AM

Actually most of the trails down there are uncrowded even in the summer when compared to our trails. This is because they have so many more trails and areas to hike and better tends to spread the crowds out.

See you on the mountain!

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