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Cold and Bitter at Sunrise

Yesterday I took a family friend up to Mount Rainier for a hike at Sunrise. The weather wasn’t slated to be good, but Kelly was OK with it. She is from the East Coast so doesn’t get out here very often. There is something to be said for 44° at 6400 feet on September 2nd. Not unusual though. It always seems to have a cold front first week of September, then we get a few more weeks of hot weather.

First stop was the viewpoint at Sunrise Point, looking down at Sunrise Lake:


We headed up to Sunrise, where we had chilly temperatures, a stiff breeze, no bugs and lots of blue sky sucker-holes. Walker announced that we needed to take Mrs. Kelly on the Wonderland Trail.


With Ford back at school (11th grade!), it was just the two youngest boys with me.


This was probably the best view of Mt. Rainier the whole hike, with a bit of Little Tahoma showing thru.


The highlight for the day, for the boys, was seeing a deer. Happily munching away, yet keeping an eye out on the boys. Smart doe.


The last meadow, bleak but still green. The cold wind running through it said otherwise, that winter is close.


Ferns with a foothold, wherever they can – these were growing on a section of columnar lava rock.


Kinnikinnick. In nature I love it, in landscaping in HOA, not so much 😉


Awhile back I had the realization that Alistaire had to hike every step on his own. I couldn’t take his weight on my back. It hasn’t been the easiest, but it is worth it. Every trip he has become stronger, although the hikes take a lot longer.


A boy, a stick and a lake. Does a child need more? Maybe a few ripe blueberries from behind him 😉


I was happy that I had gotten the boys to Shadow Lake finally, even if it was too cold to stay long.


We hurried the boys back after visiting the lake, the weather was shifting quite fast. The promised late afternoon rain was coming.


The clouds were rolling in quickly.


Although telling Alistaire to hurry doesn’t always work. There were flowers to sniff, things to check out.


A last look down at the White River and the bottom of the Emmons Glacier.


Almost always the last to bloom, Gentian flowers. Always a twinge of sadness when I see them.


Even with rain threatening, it is so hard to tell him he has to hurry. It seems a crime to make them move fast. There is so much for him to explore and learn outside.


I know winter is coming soon up high, and it will be too cold in a few weeks for the boys to enjoy hiking. Yet, I cannot wait for next year for them to be back outside, up high – and going farther with me. And to say the least, we timed it well. As soon as we reached the van, it started raining. A few minutes later, a deluge opened up over us. Still, better than being at work, no?

One thought on “Cold and Bitter at Sunrise

  1. Nice! The weather sure was different than it was for us just last week. It does feel like summer’s last gasp is upon us. 🙂 Good for you for taking the time with your little guys to let them walk. I have been in your shoes, trying to hurry us along while wanting them to be able to just enjoy the moment.

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