We have been having some beautiful weather down here in the lowlands, but it is still very snowy up in the mountains, which limits the options for places to hike. For my second and third weekly hikes of this hiking season, Mr. D and I went to Cougar Mountain both times, but our hikes started out from two different trailheads, and we did explore a trail that we had never been on.
On May 7th, we set out from the Sky Country trailhead, where we have started a lot of our shorter hikes in the winter and early spring this year. We did most of our usual trail, but then we took side trail, mostly downhill, that neither of us had ever been on. This trail went a long, long way to the park boundary. At the park boundary, we turned around, and it became a long, long uphill trail:
That's Mr. D ahead of me on the trail. The woods were beautiful with their spring green, but it was definitely a slog on a hot day.
The hike wasn't completely a slog, however. There was a wild Pacific Bleeding Heart blooming alongside the trail, and sunlight backlighting the Vine Maple leaves above.
Six days later, Mr. D and I set out for a hike on another beautiful sunny day. We had intended to hike the west end of the Rattlesnake Mountain trail, but we forgot to bring our annual Discover Pass, so we opted for Cougar Mountain instead. This time, we decided to start at the Red Town trailhead, where I hadn't hiked in almost a year. Because it had been so long, some of the trail felt brand new to me. We took a side trail to look at the meadow restoration project, where there were scads of wildflowers in bloom. I'm not sure what this one is, but I loved that shade of blue.
There was also something really wonderful about the angle of light, and the amazing circular shadows on the trail.
Sometimes even the familiar can become new...