When there’s even a hint of spring around here, we Pacific Northwesterners get outside and get moving.
After a few stress-filled weeks with work (and looking for work, in my case), Tom and I decided to pack up the dogs and head to the Cascade Mountains for a day hike to Twin Falls.
The Salish Lodge and Snoqualmie Falls just happen to be on the way, so of course we had to stop there.
We’ve never seen so much water roaring over the Falls!…
…and we all got sopping wet, even from this far away.
(Yes, I allowed Tom to actually take a photo of me. I’ve lost almost 20 pounds and, although I have a little more than 30 to go, I’m feeling good and strong and less… well, ashamed.)
It’s a short drive from Snoqualmie Falls to the trailhead to Twin Falls, just up the river. And both places are just a few miles from Seattle! This is why we love living here.
The trail to Twin Falls is a moderate hike with some steep portions, but mostly quite do-able for dogs and people alike.
Unfortunately, Quinn and Shasta had to be on leashes the whole time which really had an impact on my (iPhone) photos, since I’d often receive a tug just as I was clicking the shutter icon. I assumed that my iPhone would take adequate photos, but the true splendor of this hike is far greater than conveyed by these photos (damn it!). Looks like we’ll just have to go back with our better camera so I can update this post. Soon…
Aaaaand, we’re off!
The first thing we noticed was how much moss there is. It’s everywhere!
The trail starts out parallel to the river…
…and there are gorgeous springs sprinkled throughout this lower section.
I love how dynamic the forest in Washington are! They are just alive with change and growth. These young trees are growing from a dead (but teeming with life) stumps and fallen logs.
It looks like this tree recently fell, but once it falls to the ground it, too, will become a nurse log for new growth.
Some trees seem to be diseased and are eaten away right where they stand.
This is the bottom of a fallen tree. The whole root system is exposed. Surely there will be lots of new life sprouting on those roots soon.
And look at this root system! (And the anxious puppy above it. “You comin’, Mama??”)
Quinn and Shasta just wanted to run. I wonder if we could bring them back on a weekday when there aren’t so many people (and other dogs) and just let them go?
Even though it wasn’t an especially warm day, the hike is fairly rigorous in places. Tom took off his jacket here (notice the tree growing from the stump)…
but (we later realized) dropped his glasses. Of course, we assumed they were gone forever.
As we got close to Twin Falls, the lushness of the forest was even more incredible.
There’s a bridge high above Twin Falls. Have I even mentioned that I have acrophobia? The dogs seem a bit concerned, too.
And this is where I really wish we’d used the other camera! These photos just don’t do the splendor of this place justice. But they’re all I have, so here ya go:
…and straight down. I’d have loved to hang out down there on that little rocky beach!
Of course we had the obligatory photo taken.
And then we headed back down the mountain.
Hey! Tom’s glasses! Someone had apparently found them and put them back on the stump for us to find. I love Washingtonians!
Once we reached the river again, the dogs wanted to swim! But no way would we let them off the leash; that river is fast!
Almost back to the trailhead.
Poor Shasta’s getting old. Tom had to lift her into the back of the truck.
After our hike we decided to stop at the North Bend Outlet Mall, from where the view of Mt Si (another favorite, but much harder, Northwest hike) is stunning…
…to do some quick shopping and to grab a bite to eat.