Last week I did a final trip to Mt. Baker for the year. I had a choice of going to either the south or the north side, and because I had not been to the south side all year, that was the choice. It turned out to be a good choice. Pretty views, lots of blueberries, and several wildlife encounters with almost no other people around made for a great final trip of the season.
|Sunset on the Easton and Deming glaciers on the south side of Mt. Baker. |
The nights are getting long this time of year, so after a lot of sleep we headed up to the glacier to work on some skills. The hike to the glacier was as pretty as I have ever seen it. The sun low in the sky makes for great light from a photo standpoint.
|The Twin Sisters from the Railroad Grade. |
I have not seen a larger population of marmots anywhere in the Cascades as there currently is on the south side of Mt. Baker. I spent a lot of time bothering these guys. I have always thought I am not the most patient person in the world, but when it comes to patients, the marmot may be the least patient of all. After being scared and running into their hole I quickly set up the shot I wanted and waited less than a minute for the marmot to poke his head back out. It really is amazing that more predators have not figured this out.
|The vicious protector of the high alpine.|
An evening walk in dark and foggy weather made this photo possible.
|Looking west at sunset.|
The following day I had some time to wander around and check out some of the other wildlife, and head up to the Park Butte lookout. With a forecast of 6-8 inches of rain overnight chances were the sky would be interesting making for some good photos, but in typical North Cascades fashion when I got there it was foggy and wet.
|A dusky grouse. |
|The mountain hemlock. |
|Western hemlock trees near camp. |
|Another curious marmot.|
|Park Butte lookout on a Cascades fall day. |
|I dont see these guys often, but its always a treat when I do. |
A few hours after getting back down from the lookout the weather cleared for what would surely be a sunset to remember, so I ran back up to the lookout for the second time in four hours and shot the following photo.
|The Twin Sisters range from Park Butte lookout. |