Tour without a goal – 11 July 2014


“Ten thousand things, all in this breath…” why are people in this world so busy? just for this one breath. They say, “busy, busy, mine mine…”, busy a whole lifetime for “Me”. When this breath is cut off you let go of the whole universe. Why not let go from the start?” – from Amongst White Clouds

mountain tasting
I was ready for a break so I spent today checking a small amount of the North Cascade National Forest. After a leisurely morning I rode back down hwy 20 for 3 miles or so to the turn off for the North Cascades EnvironmentL Learning Center at Diablo dam. The dam was pretty stunning; a single lane road on the top with the shear drop on one side and the vast expanse of the reservoir on the other. The Environmental learning center looks like they have a lot of interesting programs and certainly some nice infrastructure out in the woods. But the primary activity I did was hike the trails that start back there.


I did at first just a short loop trail thinking I’d just go back there and have lunch but once on the Sourdough Creek Trail I decided to just press on. This trail was pretty easy but after some switchbacks and fantastic views of the mountains started to peak though it became a bit of a rock scramble. The Creek flowed more and more rapidly, white water now and at what seemed the end of the trail a nice stairstep cascade. But if you you hopped across he creek on some strategically placed rocks a completely free falling maybe 100 foot waterfall was revealed sheeting off a bare rock face. Glorious.


I’d wanted to go to Ross dam and lake which are only accessible by water and trail (and a road to a boat launch at the far upper end of the lake in Canada) but due to a rock slide you could no longer hike there from Diablo. There is a passenger ferry mainly to take people up to the lodge there, but it leaves in the morning. So I started to ride to the trailhead you can still take but it was late afternoon and quite hot now. I rode to the Diablo Lake overlook which is a stuff climb up from Diablo. Decided to forego this excursion at this point and retuned to camp. A good choice as with this heat I’d want to hit the pass early and thus had more time to prepare.


overnight a spider
spun it’s web
across my handlebars

Some more photos from this day can be found over on Flickr.

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