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I’ve mentioned here and there that I hit around 586 miles of hiking from August 6 2014 – August 6 2015. Last year was the first time I ever hiked more than 6 miles. Ever.
300 miles were in Appalachian Trail Sections and most of the other 286 were in the Pacific Northwest (and most of those were done in the Olympic Mountains).
Im writing about the whole experience, slowly (using tons of emails during the AT hikes as the core), but I thought folks would appreciate having an idea of where I’ve been in summary form. If nothing else, putting this here helps keep the history and experiences straight in my head.
The first section of this post is a hike location/distance summary and the second section is an alphabetized list of the trails I’ve been on – including links to any pictures I have, any official information online, and brief trip notes on my part.
|32||Enchanted Valley 1||WA|
|26||Enchanted Valley 2||WA|
|21||7 Lake Basin/High
|19.4||Hoh River Trail||WA|
|15||Shi Shi Beach 1||WA|
|14||Upper Lena Lake||WA|
|8||Shi Shi Beach 2||WA|
|7.2||Snow Lake 1||WA|
|7.2||Snow Lake 2||WA|
|6.4||Looking Glass Rock||NC|
|6||South Lost Lake||WA|
|5.4||Mt Plchuck (all)||WA|
|4||Mt Pilchuck (half)||WA|
|4||Tiger Mountain #3||WA|
|3||Art Loeb Trail||NC|
|2.4||Cresent Beach Trail||OR|
(All visible pictures and all linked pictures are mine, save “Looking Glass”. “ON” Denotes “Over Night Trip”)
7 Lake Basin/High Divide (Sol Duc Start, ON at Hoh Lake)
Notes: We started out at Sol Duc, didn’t see much the first day – heavy clouds. Descended to Hoh Lake for the night – saw my first west coast bear! – then back up and around to Sol Duc. Jogged the last few miles; loved it. Would like to head back on clearer days. Im trying to wake up early enough one day to run the whole 18 mile loop in a single day.
Appalachian Trail Sections (VA, NC, TN)
Notes: Full narrative is still being edited. List of sections can be found based on album names in Flickr collection above.
Art Loeb Trail (Small Section, NC)
Notes: Just a quick get-out-and-hike-hike post-AT
My Pictures: None (Surprisingly?)
Notes: Easy trail for a cool view at the top. A Meetup.com hike. Not sure where my pictures of this are…
Notes: Seriously the coolest lake I’ve ever been to – and coldest I’ve ever swam in. Amazing place, tough hike, loved it. Go if you can!
Calypso Trail (MT)
Notes: Driving from DC to Seattle. Found this middle-of-nowhere trail right off the highway. One of the loneliest feeling places I’ve ever been…in a good way. Might have been a bit dumb driving my crappy Jeep Liberty over that bridge you see in the pictures. Alone. Twice.
Crescent Beach Trail (OR)
Notes: Another short hike, 90 miles west of Portland. Was my first trip to a beach you can only get to by hiking. Gorgeous beach, gorgeous day. Was held up for awhile by quite a few mountain goats taking their time munching on the trail.
Notes: Last hike of the Meetup.com fitness series I was a part of. One of my favorite hikes in Washington so far, but 4000 feet-ish in 4-miles-ish makes you work for it. Still – outstanding alpine meadows, wildflowers, and amazing views.
Enchanted Valley (Twice, ON)
My Pictures (First Trip): https://www.flickr.com/photos/sintixerr/sets/72157653404525548
My Pictures (Second Trip): https://www.flickr.com/photos/sintixerr/sets/72157655624635779
Notes: Pics have multiple hikes mixed in them. I’ve Overnighted this trip twice. The first time, the Valley was closed so we stayed at Pyrites campsite then hiked most of the way to O’Neil Trail Junction before finding a bridge out. We turned around and headed back to Pyrites, then back to the TH the third day. The second trip we stayed in O’Neil Creek on night 1 then the Valley night 2, where we saw a bear fairly up close. My foot went out, so we ended up not going further again. I will get up that mountain to Anderson Glacier!
Notes: Cute Lake. Pretty easy lake to hike to. Recommend J
Hoh Rain Forest River Trail (to Olympic Ranger Station, ON)
Notes: Hikes through the Hoh Rainforest in a one-nighter. Stayed at the Olympic Ranger station, but made it another ¾ mile or so – and that last ¾ mile absolutely made the whole hike worth it.. Some of the prettiest, most magical, scenes I’ve ever been in. A walk through an enchanted tunnel with a couple of deer was particularly surreal. As were the faeries that came out of the log.
Huntoon Point (Snowshoe via Artist’s Point)
Notes: This was my first “real” snowshoe and it was hard! But I was with some Mountaineers and our group was the one that didn’t turn around. Good for us because I’ve never ever been in such grand, amazing surroundings. Certainly not in the snow; too much Florida in my youth. Some of the best pictures Ive taken of the outdoors – they’re glorious.
Looking Glass Rock (NC)
My Pictures: Somewhere, still looking, so here are someone else’s:
Notes: This was a quick fun post-AT hike while I was decompressing in Asheville (go AirBnB!). Cool looking mountain-stub-rounded-cliff-face-thing.
Marmot Pass (ON)
Notes: Led an overnight Meetup trip myself with a couple of guys I didn’t know. Got there earlier than expected and it was colder than expected. Not as cool as I thought it would be, although it was certainly gorgeous. On my list to return to this summer to go explore some of the connecting trails.
Notes: One of the Meetup.com fitness series hikes. Snow. :)
Oyster Dome (Most)
My Pictures: None
Notes: Didn’t quite make it to the top; it was terrible weather and nothing to see. We could’ve kept going, we just didn’t care. One of the Meetup.com fitness series hikes.
Mt. Pilchuck (Twice)
Notes: First trip I only made it about 2/3 of the way up. It was a fitness-building hike, I had 30lbs on by back, and hadn’t slept in almost a week. The second time I came back with my sister and her boyfriend and made it to the top and it was a lot easier and more fun than the first time (note: not the lookout, I didn’t feel up to scrambling)
Shi Shi Beach (Twice)
My Pictures (first trip): https://www.flickr.com/photos/sintixerr/sets/72157650798832336
My Pictures (second trip): https://www.flickr.com/photos/sintixerr/sets/72157655624635779
Notes: First time was a meetup hike – my first in Washington State! We ended up walking back and forth along the beach several times – plus bushwhacked down a very old mining path to a lake deep into the woods (hence the trip length). TONS of coastal life everywhere. Second trip was with a friend and we spent a lot of time watching Seals.
Snow Lake (Twice: Winter Snow, Summer Dry)
My Pictures (snow trip): https://www.flickr.com/photos/sintixerr/albums/72157650597387518
My Pictures (summer trip): https://www.flickr.com/photos/sintixerr/sets/72157656212384548
Notes: Did Snow Lake twice. The first time was in the winter in snow with microspikes. It was actually pretty easy – deceptively so. Going back, I took a first time hiker (old friend) who had a pretty tough time with the trail; it was way rockier and exposed to sun and heat than I remembered
South Lost Lake (Not)
My Pictures: None
Notes: I actually don’t know where we ended up hiking; our hike leader couldn’t find the right trailhead. J Lost Lake remained lost.
My Pictures: None
Notes: I’ve been told I was on this hike. I don’t remember it. Wait…I think it rained. A lot. Till we were soaked through our heaviest rain gear. Ugh. This is why I try not to remember it.
Thunder Creek (Far, ON)
Notes: Not as many classically scenic viewpoints as many other hikes, but it was really enjoyable – both the scenery and company. (I led several Meetup folks on this trip.) We went past the standard WTA hike, but I cant quite recall where we stopped, except it was about 10.2 miles in. We didn’t do 4th of July pass or whatever.
Tiger Mountain #3
My Pictures: Totally not worth it
Notes: Just a training hike alone. It was boring as sin. Got a decent distance up then just stopped and came back.
Trillium Lake Snowshoe
Notes: This was a super easy snowshoe that I really screwed up and almost died during. It was flat and sunny out when I left, but I wore jeans, didn’t have a headlamp, and didn’t have a map – it was a circle after all – and it was my first snowshoe ever. It rained. Then it snowed. And it was getting dark. I was getting really cold and there were two exit options, both far, and one led to my car. I guessed and picked right.
Upper Lena Lake
Notes: I almost died on this hike; really close. Fell off a ledge/stream/waterfall. Was inches from falling 40 feet.. landed 4 feet down instead. Beautiful area, but still feel sketch about going back. If it’s been wet out in the area, several areas are pretty tough. Went with two friends.
Notes: A random hike in Yellowstone. Was pretty, but the PNW has this particular hike beat on all accounts, even if the threat of grizzlies does add an edge. We did see 10’s of prairie dogs in one area and some geese being hysterical. Oh..and a lone wolf! Was with my sister and her boyfriend.