Tuesday, August 21, 2012

North Cascades

Here is the next leg of our adventure, around the north end of the Cascades. It exceeded my expectations by quite a margin and left feeling like we should have planned a week for this, rather than a day and a half. 
Tryg gave us a hot tip to stop in Winthrop, hot being right it was 104'F ! Neat town though, clearly on the tourist track.
The old school house brewery was our destination of choice for lunch, and refreshment. The beer was excellent ! I am sure the water quality has as much to do with it, as the talented brewer. Heidi even got to ring the old school bell, she has some interesting connections :)
On up the road, and quickly the mountains open up with fantastic views.
Here's a textbook glacial valley view from Liberty Bell pass. I wish we'd had time to do a longer hike.
On the other side of the pass is a back packers paradise. Miles of unspoiled isolated terrain.
George Lake was a poplar place to stop.
At Marble mount a turn off takes you into the back side of the glaciated peaks. Well worth the trek through the woods.
With the sudden warm up the previous few days the unusually late snowfall was melting rapidly. The swollen creeks were raging with ice water carrying the occasional tree down with it.
On our way to the coast, the marine moisture was really evident. The Park staff had pointed us in the direction of Sauk mountain, so we ran up that hill just to see the view. I had hopes of seeing Mt Baker from there, but time didn't allow for what looks like a tremendous hike up the spire. Interestingly there appeared to be something familiar up top. A launch ramp ?
Out of time and with the wind on our backs there was no consideration, but that would be a quite a view from up there. Next time !

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