Monday, November 29, 2010

Galena-Chain Lakes Trail

Several weeks ago, October 21st, a Thursday, my wife and I were able to get away for a little hiking, the last of the year, though we were not certain of that at the time.  We went first to Artist's Point at the end of the Mount Baker Highway and watched the sunrise from there:  We then went back down the mountain a ways to the ski area and hiked from there around Bagley Lakes and up the Galena-Chain Lakes Trail.  I've already posted pictures of the spectacular autumn color that greeted us all along the way:

In this short post I want to show some of the spectacular scenery we saw, since the trail we took gives some of the best views in the North Cascades of Mount Baker and of Mount Shuksan, two of the most prominent peaks in the area.  Mount Baker, at 10,778 feet (3,285 m), is the third-highest mountain in Washington State and the sixth-highest in the Cascade Range and is an active volcano.  Mount Shuksan is 9127 feet (2,782 m), is the most photographed peak in the North Cascades.  Both are covered year around with snow and numerous glaciers.

 Where we started - at the north end of Lower Bagley Lake with Table Mountain to the south.

The trail along the west side of Lower Bagley Lake - early morning.

 Looking back across Lower Bagley Lake to the north.

Along the trail - still early morning.

Mount Shuksan becomes visible to the east with Upper Bagley Lake in the foreground.

 Autumn color along the trail.

As we climb Mount Shuksan looms to the east.

Almost at the top of the ridge with the trail below us and Upper Bagley Lake again visible.

At the top of the ridge Mount Baker visible to the southeast with Chain Lakes below.

 And then back down with clouds moving in and the afternoon wearing on.

Back at Lower Bagley Lake with the bridge for casual walkers in the foreground.

 The stream that connects Upper and Lower Bagley Lakes.

Nearly back to where we started.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Afternoon Walk

A few days ago (October 8th) the sun was shining and our youngest son, Edward had some time between work and school. He and I decided to take an hour and a walk with our cameras. Here's some of the pictures we took of the last autumn flowers, the fast disappearing autumn color and whatever else we could find. By the time we arrived home, the light was fading, the clouds had moved in and it was starting to sprinkle.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Autumn Colors in the North Cascades

Every year in the autumn we try to get up to Mount Baker to see the autumn colors and try to catch a sunny day to do so.  We don't have the maples of New England and the midwest, but at high elevations the yellow of the mountain ash and the red of the wild blueberries provide an abundance of color and the yellow of the Big-leaf Maples some additional color at lower elevations.  Here are some of the pictures we've taken over the past few years.