I seem to find myself in hairbrained situations quite often. The latest being a last minute decision to go on a quick and easy overnighter to beautiful (we think) Watson Lakes in the Mt Baker National Forest. At a mere 4400 foot elevation, a nice heavy snowpack wasn't quite on our radar until we had to park about a mile from the trailhead blocked by some good size classic Northwest slush piles. Pressing on with the thought of a pristine lake at the end of a Measly 2.5 mile hike on our minds was an easy decision, but one that would make the rest of the evening interesting to say the least. Hitting the trailhead at about 8:30 p.m. some really nice temperatures kept us from being apprehensive about night hiking, and having our lamps and trudging through the snow kept us feeling pretty awesome as well, that is until we found ourselves dropping in elevation, searching in the dark, in a solid 4-5 feet of snow, for a trail that was about 20 inches wide. Sidehilling, scrambling and gritting and clawing our way through brush, slush and warily navigating rock fields with a good post-holing risk and backtracking to the correct area where we would go over a small saddle, to see the beautiful lake moonlit because it was entirely frozen over and covered in more snow. Sliding down towards the water's edge on an old avalanche track while watching a huge lightning storm on the horizon and seeing more stars than I have in months, made the experience more than worthwhile though, and some steak kebabs and rum and coke courtesy of Mike, who makes the honorable mention list for jumping on the trip without a shred of gear, no headlamp and still being able to pack both beverage and steak morsels, made the weekend one of the best this summer so far.
Here's to believing theres no such thing as too late to have fun.
Thanks for looking
whole gallery here