|So much snow has melted in just two weeks. Crater Notch is almost unrecognizable.|
|This orchid may not look like much, but I am excited to spot it. I think it's a bog orchid but need to confirm the ID. (Too much wind had to hold it still.)|
|Receding snow, exploding spring.|
|Rocks and scree south of Alpine Lake.|
The side trail to Big Hawk Lake is thick with tall brush and mosquitoes swarm me at the lakes, just like C. warned. After a swim, I turn around again to return to Alpine Lake, which has the best likelihood for the sunset I’m looking for. As I scramble over rocks looking for sheltered, well-spaced trees, I pause to watch a mountain goat and her baby. I head off in the other direction away from them. Only a while later do I round a bend and come right smack face to face with them. Sorry, I’d forgotten to be loud.
Retreating down the trail, I run into a couple heading towards the lake to camp. They are not discouraged about the mountain goat hanging around the campsite. I’m still wary of mountain goats so I bushwhack to the far side of the lake, which also happens to give me a prime spot for sunset viewing. On the rocks, I watch the mountain goats hanging around the other campers, and hear them yelling. Glad it’s not me over there.
|Hanging the bear bag on a high branch.|
|Happy Solstice from Alpine Lake.|
|I sleep soundly, snug in my hammock, listening to birds.|
|Birch Lake looked completely different than it had a when I went there in early June.|
|Sharing the view from the Mt. Aeneas Trail of the Picnic Lakes with a furry friend.|
|Aptly named Switchbacks Trail, descends to the road, and then a short but dusty roadwalk gets me back to where I started.|
Alpine Lake Trail #7
Crater Notch Trail
Mount Aeneas Trail