Instead of pretending that "Dogs are my BFF" during three hours of 4-H meetings a couple weeks ago, I decided that the world might be a better place if I were on a nearby hiking trail.
So, after checking, double checking, triple checking to make sure my services weren't needed, I wagged my happy tail up to Chuckanuts Oyster Dome.
While that trail has been written up numerous times on this blog, it seems important to note a couple of changes that have taken place on this trail in the recent past (and I need to have a spot to post my photos).
Important Item #1: The Bat Caves Are Closed.
According to a posted sign at the junction with the Samish Overlook Trail, DNR explains that the bat caves area is now off limits. It seems they are PO'd about the missing bridge and the white noses on the bats. Here is the sign:
(Un)important Item #2: Trail work has been performed on parts of the trail recently. Some of the work involves completely re-routing the trail to bypass one of the steep, slippery, muddy inclines. The reroute may add 1/10th of a mile to your trek, but it wanders you by a huge boulder that is of a bit of interest.
The old route has been well covered by logs and branches. It's been covered so well that I didn't notice right away that the route was different. When I did conclude that it was a new trail section it still took a while for me to visually locate the old route. The crew did a nice job on the new section... it's interesting and do not worry... there is still plenty of mud to deal with (but it's much better than the old part).
While I do not know who is responsible for this particular work, I suspect that Ken Wilcox played a hands on role in the work performed. Ken is the author of Hiking Whatcom County books (and probably others as well).
There wasn't a lot of time for dilly-dallying... it was important to stay out of the doghouse by making sure my trek was completed before the meetings were finished (and before the sun set).
Chuckanut to Oyster Dome took about 1 hour and 10 minutes at a pretty steady pace with a couple short stops for photos. The descent was much faster as a trail run and photo ops were fewer and further between.
Here are the photos:
Please accept my apologies for the poor picture quality. All photos were taken by my "Not Smart" phone.
Despite the brisk pace, this was the perfect hike for the time, location and weather that were thrown my way.