Tuesday, June 30, 2009

N. Lk Samish Towers & a View 06/28/09

Sunday I ventured out to the Lake Samish County Park, armed with a backpack, camera and mountain bike with hopes of exploring the logging roads to locate the two communication towers that alluded me in May and to find some nice views of Lake Samish.

Since I don't think Mountain bikes are allowed on the trail in the park I just pushed that thing all the way to the top where the trail popped out onto the logging road.

The push wasn't too bad, until after the Eagles Outlook. After this point the trail becomes a mere boot-path and is very steep in parts.

Since I had studied the maps (and been here a few times before) I was able to reach the communication towers after about an hour of mostly hiking with some biking on the flat/downhill portions.

After the towers (eastern part of the route on the map) then I proceeded westward to a deadend and a slightly better view of the Lake.

At this viewpoint there were these clumps in the middle of the road which were roo-shaped (you know what I mean) clumps of animal fur and broken bones. Cool... and a bit creepy.

I was hoping for another, higher viewpoint but the family phoned to say they were home so I began my return trip.

Instead of returning along the boot-path trail, I attempted to follow the power lines straight toward the parking lot. The first downhill was survivable, but the second proved just too steep to ride. After a few minutes of careful maneuvering down this obscenely steep slope on foot I was able to connect back up to the trail and descent without trouble.

I'm glad I found the viewpoint and may head back some time for more exploring, but probably not until this winter.

Happy Trails!


Sunday, June 28, 2009

Destination: North Lake Samish on a bike

After getting tired of listening to three yapping dogs every time I go outside to do yard work (since the girls are all at a dog show this a.m.) I'm taking the bike up to Lake Samish Park in Whatcom County.

Planning on walking the bike up the trail from the park to the powerline/logging roads and then touring them on wheels to find the communication towers and to see what other vistas may have to offer in that area.

Should be home by 1:00pm and in cell phone range.


Friday, June 19, 2009

Itinerary for June 20, 2009

Meeting Jen, Janet & Vida in Maple Falls at 9am and are planning on spending the day at Heather Meadows / Artist Point. Not sure what the conditions are like up there right now, so will likely wander around aimlessly, looking for photo opps to pass the time.

David and Karen & the kids are planning on showing up at Heather Meadows later in the day for some sledding.

Backup plan could be Goat Mtn, Nooksack Cirque or more likely, Excelsior Mtn.

Will spend the evening hanging out at the Summer Solstice Party in Maple Falls at Jens, camping in the field and plan to be home early Sunday morning.

FWIW, I don't have Jens address on Silver Lake Rd, but she and Dave own the Crossroads Grocery store located at the corner of Silver Lk Rd and Hwy 542 in Maple Falls. Ask a local... they'll probably know how to find me.

Happy Trails!


Sunday, June 14, 2009

Next Hike: Sat June 20th, 2009

Just a quick note to those who actually read this blog.

Next hike will be Saturday, June 20th.

Destination still TBD, but it will most likely be something off the Mount Baker Highway (hwy 542). There is a slight chance it could be off Hwy 20 (Baker Lake area) but probably not.

Saturday evening is the Summer Solstice Party (Potluck) which I'll be attending... probably an overnight if the weather cooperates, otherwise it will be a late-night drive home. If you come hiking with me you're welcome to join the party, or we can just drop a vehicle in B'ham for you to head back home if you so choose.

Chances are that the hike might involve some degree of snow, but probably no need for snowshoes.

Send me an email or call me if you are interested.

Happy Trails!


Thursday, June 11, 2009

June 13 outing cancelled.


Looks like rain.

Just kidding... sort of. It does look like a chance of rain, but I have some schedule changes that aren't allowing for me to organize a hike.

Alternatively, I'm hoping to do a little mountain biking with Mikayla while Tanya and Alexia are partying at Girl Scout camp.

Sunday, June 14th I might be able to do a quick (real quick) hike in the North Bend area if I can round up a person to help me move a treadmill. Any takers? It'll be fun.

Call me.


Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Lake Samish North Trail 05/03/09

A couple weeks ago I had a few free hours so I grabbed my camera and some snacks and returned to the county park located on Lake Samish.

Previous TR & pics here from November 2008.

I've been wanting to explore a little further into the area but I failed to bring a map with me so the plan was pretty much just to 'head up' and see where I end up.

Right from the start I kept to the 'short cuts' which stay near the powerline swath instead of the more time consuming switchbacks (which are actually very nice if you come to visit).

Eventually I found myself at the Eagles Overlook "viewpoint". It wasn't my intention to end up here because there is no view due to the growth of the trees... plus it's a dead end.

Bummed... I was ready to turn around when I noticed a faint side trail heading uphill. Just the sort of thing I was looking for. I followed it up, up, up and ended up at the top of a large granite-like cliff which was neat, but still no real view.

A short while later the trail popped out onto a forest service or some kind of maintenance road, but the faint foot path seemed to continue on the opposite side of the road (I'll save that for the next trip).

I followed the road back to the powerline strip where I noticed these babies on top of the knob 1335'. That looked like a neat destination so I followed that road in that general direction.

It would have been nice to have a map at this point as I came to four different intersections and hoped for the best.

At the last intersection I turned right. Had I gone straight I may have reached my destination today.

When I turned right, the road ascended to what probably was a temporary quarry for the road construction work where it appeared to dead end.

However, at the dead end, there was a footpath (or game trail) that continued onward. The path was easy to follow since the greenery is still recovering from the winter snow, but it will become bushy rather quick. This footpath follows what looks like what used to be a road or possibly a railroad grade, but it is being overtaken by alders and undergrowth. This path continues straight and then loops back and I think it ends up just beyond the top of the quarry cliffs.

It was at this point that I reached my turnaround time so I had to call it quits. It was also at this point that the foot path seemed to disappear in a clearing with no obvious exit route. The towers hadn't been in view since that original glimpse so I didn't have any idea how close I was to their location at this point. If I had a map I probably would have spent a few additional minutes exploring around to find that last segment of trail.

My GPS map wasn't providing any useful details about the road (not showing) or the topography.

It was an uneventful return to the vehicle and the 30 minute drive back home.

Only passed one other person on the trail.

A couple of bonus pics:

If you come on a warm or hot summer day you can stop at the parks beach for a quick dip before you head home, but parking on hot summer weekends is often problematic.

Happy Trails!


Postlude: Next time I might take my bike along and scope out some of those viewpoints that I suspect the logging roads dead-end at. Should make for a nice change of pace and save some time as well.

So far behind...

No, I'm not talking about being left at the end of a long line of hikers. I'm talking about the fact that I'm about six trip reports behind.

The TR's are in progres... here are the teaser thumbnails for you to contemplate in the meantime.

My next outing is probably going to be on Saturday, June 13th. Depart from Mount Vernon no earlier than 9:15am (that means sleep in!!)

Thanks for reading and happy trails!