We didn’t get any blueberries this summer. Our native bushes, though, are producing a fall crop worth drooling over!
On Saturday, I joined a fantastic group of Mountaineers on a scramble of Chikamin Peak. We started at the Mineral Creek trailhead and hiked about 5 miles to Park Lakes. Nick and I camped here many years ago when we hiked the PCT between Snoqualmie and Stevens Pass, and it was nice to return here with more time to enjoy the beauty of the place.
From the lakes, we traveled off-trail to Glacier Lake and then up to the ridge between Four Brothers and Chikamin Peak and headed north to the summit of Chikamin. It was a gorgeous route.
The way down was another matter. Instead of returning the way we came, we dropped off the ridge between Chikamin and Four Brothers toward the PCT down a “gully.” It was actually a slippery, steep, grass-covered slope. A fall could have resulted in certain death. Somehow, I was the only one worried about this.
In the end, we made it to the PCT without incident, hiked back to Park Lakes and returned to the car 18 miles, 5600′, and 13 hours after we’d left it that morning. Glorious!
I convinced Nick to join me over Labor Day weekend for a three-day, four-peak adventure, I’m dubbing the Sawtooth Slam. The plan was to hike from the Crater Creek TH into Cooney Lake on day 1. The next day we’d run the ridge from Switchback, Martin and Cheops to Boiling Lake. Then on day 3, we’d scramble Bigelow and head out.
Everything went more or less according to plan. We had a few small hurdles – near freezing temperatures at Cooney Lake and treacherously loose scree/talus. Nothing that killed us, so we’ll live to see another mountain. We also live to post pictures of the adventure!