Helio: 3.9 mi
Eagles: 1.3 mi
Helio gain: 643 ft
Helio max: 3778
Eagles gain: none, flat
Miranda was with me
Knowing I was going up a big mountain the next day and I was not taking Miranda, I wanted to get her out but I kept it a low key day.My intent was to go Excelsior but when I got to the trailhead, I just wasn’t feeling it. I drove out Glacier Creek Rd instead to see how far I could get up it. Parking for the Heliotrope trailhead is about 8 mi up. I parked at about 7 mi up the road. At this point there was about 1ft of compact snow on the road due to the snowmobiles that use this as a winter playground.
We parked at N48 48.844 W121 53.685, bundled up and headed out from there. The view point was 0.9 mi or so up the gently graded road.
It was really windy up on the mountain but not down where I was. The sun was behind the mountains but about to make an appearance. It was glorious. When I am over in this area especially when I have an excellent view of this mountain, I remember how when I stood on her summit, I realized that I had this. That I could go where I wanted, when I wanted as long as I was prepared and made good choices. It gave me strength. But it was windy up there apparently!
After the viewpoint we continued on up the road to climber’s right. The snow glimmered like diamonds when the sun hit it. There were no other people up there so it was quiet. While there were no other people up there, we were not alone.
This ermine needs to turn white! They do that during the winter and I guess since this is the first snow he hasn’t done that yet. I got quite a few shots of him, he didn’t see Miranda and she didn’t see him. Was she was noticed though, that little guy took off!
Miranda never saw the ermine.
After a bit, it was obvious that Miranda was getting uncomfortable and it was time to head back. She gets horrible ice/snow balls in-between her toes. I kept stopping to get them out but I could not stay ahead of them and she kept attending to her feet so I knew it was time to leave. It was a great, short walk in the snow and we had fun.
After getting back to the truck we head down off the mountain. Shortly before getting down to Deming we took the Mosquito Lake Road. The chum are running and the eagles are plentiful so I decided to stop by the WLT propery along the river and walk the loop. Parking can be had at N48 50.802 W122 08.728
This trail takes you out to the river and back. The property was purchased by the land trust due to it’s proximity to the river. We removed the structures (a house and barn), planted about 1000 trees, and fixed up the trail adding a new bridge on a recent work party. The property is called Eagle’s Roost and the name holds true.