Don't ask me how I'd never hiked Pilchuck before. Somehow I'd never bothered. I'm so glad the three of us made the hike up there yesterday. We topped out around 7pm, and it was magical being up there in the evening light. Here are a few pictures from the day.
On my visit last year, I focused on finding a beautiful trailside patch of wildlowers. This year my focus was finding a patch of flowers and some of the old wood from the eruption. This was what I found along the Boundary Trail. All of me, tripod body and feet, was all on the trail the entire time. This area is too precious for anything less.
A few from yesterday's day trip to the Olympic Peninsula, mostly from a hike through blooming wild rhododendron. We only recently discovered Mount Walker, and it is now a new favorite training hike (I carried 45 lbs up it this time.) We found that hiking it on a weekday gave us a little more solitude (and a parking space) among the blooms. We were so fortunate that the wind died just in time for our hike up, and the heavy rain held off until we got down to the car.
An afternoon wander, just the three of us, through freshly fallen snow.
Fall is my favorite hiking season. I love the cool afternoons, I love the vibrant color, and I love the open trails. The clouds began to clear as we climbed, and by the time we began to descend, the sky was blue and the sun was shining. Such a beautiful experience.