ginaberrry and yiyi invited me to join them on a camping trip to Lake Diablo in the north cascades. It's about 60 miles east of I-5, near the skagit river system.
I drove up at about 6:45 on friday, and ran into horrible traffic pretty much from North seattle to Everett, then again in Mt. Vernon.
Once I got off of I-5, the drive started to improve, offering some good pictures:
The base of the cascades, reflecting off of my hood.
'man invading the wilderness'
By the time I got to the campsite, I was burning to have a conversation with my close friend, flask:
That night we played cards and talked around the fire. The first thing you notice about the area is how clean the air is. It's easy to forget what breathing should feel like when you spend most of your time in the city.
The fire making my camera flip out.
Throwing gravel into lake Diablo.
On saturday, we decided to go hiking on the diablo lake trail, which entailed a total vertical climb up and down of about 2000 feet over ~6 miles.
A stream near the beginning of the trail.
Ross dam, from the top. We had to look around for the trail, because there weren't any signs pointing out the right way.
A tunnel near the bottom of the dam that leads to a decrepit footbridge across the river.
Ross dam from the other side of the river.
The power station.
This is about 2.5 hours into the hike, 1000 feet or so above Ross dam.
The power lines running from the power station. The trail feels very desolate, we only saw one other hiking party the entire time, near the beginning.
The view looking up from the forest, near a creek that carried snowmelt water down to Ross lake.
An island in ross lake, near diablo dam. Gina is in the foreground. We were attacked by bees shortly after this picture was taken. Luckily, I was able to fend them off with a large stick.
The second dam that we passed that day, Diablo dam. It was venting water. The mist felt great after 4.5 hours of hiking in the sun.
Shortly after the diablo dam, we got back to my car and went back to camp. I cooked steak and mushrooms on the coleman grill. There's nothing like eating after a long day of hiking.
I ended up leaving that night around midnight, which turned out to be a mistake as I was ticketed for going 67 in a 35 on highway 20 going through concrete. It was a pretty bastardly setup, hiding behind a blind corner right after the speed limit was reduced from 50, just waiting for someone like me. The officer was nice and reduced it to 20 over. I am definitely buying a valentine one radar detector when I get back home from vacation.
Still, I'd say the trip was more than worth it. Thank you to Gina for the idea & invitation. :)