Mount Rose

Lake Cushman and Mt Rose

Lake Cushman is the reservoir behind the dam on the North Fork Skokomish. There was a natural lake there in the old days, but much smaller. The North Fork Skok is one of my favorite hikes … Staircase Campground is very popular and sits just inside the boundary of the Olympic National Park. The mountain just to the right of center is Mt Rose. The snowy peak behind it is Copper Mountain. The early prospectors looked for copper but didn’t find any worth working. The Olympics are pretty much free of any valuable mineral deposits (mostly marine sedimentary rocks or marine basalt) … which is one reason they remained pristine until they could be protected by the national park system. Below is a close up of Mt Rose.

Mt Rose has a trail to the summit. A steep trail, but at least you get some view from the top. I used it for years as a training hike, year round. In the winter, I would snowshoe to the top, going pretty directly up, since the trail was covered. I would then follow the ridgeline that runs to the right (in this view) and then drop back down to catch the trail at about the 3400 ft level.

Mt Rose and Copper Mountain

A Short-timer

Short-timer

This is the North Fork of the Skokomish River in the southeast corner of Olympic National Park. While the river is contained enough in a valley so that it doesn’t have much room to meander and make oxbow lakes and such, it still moves around enough to erode away banks, taking trees and (sometimes) bridges.

Hiking in the Fog

Ridgeline
View from the Staircase Rapids Loop Bridge

The clouds frequently hang low over the Olympic Mountains. That is true year around, but in the late autumn, it is almost perpetual. I enjoy watching the clouds move up valley and around the ridges. They add an element of mystery to the landscape. And as long as you are prepared and have good equipment, it’s a good time to enjoy the solitude of a mountain valley.

Two Views

Two Views: Across the river
Two Views: Uphill

These two images were taken the same day in the same spot, from the North Fork Skokomish trail in Olympic National Forest. This is one of my most favorite trails … an old friend that I have visited throughout the years, year-round.

Mossy Limbs

Mossy Limbs

The old saying that moss grows on the north side of trees doesn’t work so well in the rain forest (or the Olympic National Park in general). Nice to have the sun providing some backlighting for this.

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