One last vacationblog

Without much further ado, photos from the hike Nora and I took last week in the North Cascades:

Nora liked these little pinecones (cf. big pine cones in this post).

On the second day of the hike, we quickly emerged from the forest. Nora saw some bears from this vantage point, but they were too distant to get a decent picture.

As we climbed higher out of the valley, more of the snow-capped peaks surrounding us rose into view.

Wildflowers were abundant, especially around streams.

Nora and I reached the physical high point of our trip that same day, at about 6,500 feet. While Glacier peak was covered in clouds, we could see some of the neighboring glaciated mountains.

While we weren’t able to get a picture of the bears we saw on this trip, here’s a nice picture of a marmot.

We spent our final night camped next to beautiful Blue Lake (having visited White Pass and Red Pass the day before).

The final day was a 12-mile descent above stunning fogged-in valleys.

The mountains almost miraculously protruded from an ocean of fog.

Sometimes it felt as if we were hiking along the edge of the world. Soon, however, we’d be forced to return to it.

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4 Responses to One last vacationblog

  1. cp says:

    wow – some great pictures – reminds me of the south island in new zealand – is there not a danger of the bears you saw coming into your camp ?

  2. dave says:

    Thanks, CP. Yes, there’s some small danger of bears coming into camp, but usually they are looking for food. So we hang all foodstuff (and anything with a distinctive odor — even toothpaste and sunscreen) from a high branch when we bed down for the night. Most of the bears in the North Cascades are black bears — quite afraid of humans. The ones we saw ran away as soon as they saw us. They’re amazingly fast runners, even on steep, rocky slopes. I’ve never had to do this, but apparently if a black bear comes into your camp, you can easily scare it away by making lots of noise and shining flashlights in its face.

    Grizzlies are another matter entirely, and now there are reports of 20 or so living in the North Cascades (most live in Canada and Alaska). Grizzlies can become aggressive when confronted, so your best defense is to make sure you never get close to them. They don’t want to take on anything as large as a human, but if they have to, they will. Typical advice is to make lots of noise while you’re hiking, and again, to hang up your food so they can’t reach it.

    Last year in Kings Canyon, we had to carry food in bear-proof boxes. While there are only black bears that far south, they have apparently learned how to defeat every food-hanging trick hikers can devise.

  3. cp says:

    i don’t think i’d survive out there – i guess its something you learn by experience – btw, the reading at the wedding i was fretting about was a joke ! they handed me the correct missal on the walk to the altar …

  4. dave says:

    That’s brilliant!

    If you don’t know the story, make sure to read CP’s blog entry on the subject:

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