I wasn't sure how I was going to post about this, so thought I'd break it all up into smaller posts. That way you can skip anything that doesn't interest you - and I still have it here to refer to later!
The first photo is of Saddleback from our street. We have lived here for 12 years beneath this beautiful behemoth. We look to it to see when the snow is coming, to see if the rain is coming our way, to see if it's an early spring. It's the backdrop of life here and has made it into many of the logos and names of local businesses.
Last year was the first time I had the opportunity to hike to the top - it was a very profound experience for me! I took the boys with me last year, but this year they stayed home (they would have liked to have come again, and I will definitely take them some time again in the future).
In order to go on this hike, we drove down to the ferry to take us across the Lower Arrow Lake (this is the one our town is nestled against), then drove up to the base of the trail. The trail begins in beautiful temperate forest, much of which reminds me of where we used to live on the West Coast of BC. It's really, really beautiful.
The first part of the hike is all in the wood. As we were hiking we could see the trees changing...they get scrubbier, thinner and more compact looking as we got higher. One of the first areas that we got to where we could see 'out' of the trees was here, along this rock ridge.
It's amazing how the terrain changes under your feet as you ascend.
Although the alpine flowers were finished their bloom for the year, the fields were still beautiful. Above the rocky ledges is an area that is huge alpine meadow. It's a very fragile area, and we were careful to stay on the path.
I should mention that the path is not a wide one in most areas. Most of the time we hiked single file in small groups of twos and fours.
This is the first view back down from the meadow, back to where we took the cable ferry across the lake.
It was breathtaking to see how far we had come already!
As you can tell from the photos, the weather was amazing.
I took the following photo of the summit from the same spot as the photo down at the lake.
See that little white dot up on the right hand side of the rock? That's the cabin we hiked to. I think we were somewhere around half way through our hike by the time I took this picture.
(sunburned and smiling)