Monday, September 30, 2013

Takhlakh Lake

This has been a really fun September! I have two wonderful trips that I'm very excited to tell you about. The first was a family camping trip to Takhlakh Lake. We've heard of Takhlakh Lake for years. I guess at first I was the one who really wanted to go there. Somewhere along the way, I kind of lost my enthusiasm, but Christina was still really interested in going. I'm so glad she pushed for us to finally go this year. It was probably one of the best camping spots I've ever been to. Takhlakh is a little lake at the bottom of Mt. Adams, about two hours away from our house. On still days, you can see an almost perfect reflection of the mountain in this lake. We were blessed with the very best weather you could ask for and some wonderful reflections in the lake. 

I'm not going to apologize--there are a lot of mountain pictures in this post. With every different time of day, the look of the mountain changes and I think it's all worth showing.

The afternoon that we arrived, the moon was rising right above Mt. Adams. 

Mt. Adams at sunset.

Again at sunset, from a different spot on the lake. There's some people in a canoe on the left side--I really wished we had some kayaks so we could go out on the lake!

The lake was a short walk from our camping spot. We went back to look at the mountain repeatedly each day. We also went  a couple times at night. Early in the evening the moon was out and the mountain was still reflected in the lake, but now illuminated by moonlight. Then we went back later in the night. The moon had set, but there were stars reflected in the lake--it was so beautiful! I wish I had pictures of those two views, but I don't. :-(

Sunrise--sunbeams shining over the shoulder of the mountain.

Shortly after sunrise. That ripple was created by Dad throwing a rock--it just highlights how still the rest of the water is.

Mossy trees around our campsite.

We did go on a short hike. Dad and Christina climbed on some lava rocks near the trail.

There were mushrooms everywhere!

We also saw some pikas on the rock slopes by the trail.

 Takhtakh Meadow--the trail's destination.

 One of the signs on the trail claimed that you could see Goat Rocks from the trail. We never found a spot where you could, but we did find a side trail that climbed up to a viewpoint where there was an excellent view of both Mt. Rainier and Goat Rocks.

Mt. Rainier

Goat Rocks

One more shot of Mt. Adams.

We had a great time, just relaxing out there for a couple days. The weather was a lot warmer than we had expected, which was a pleasant surprise. We even went swimming in the lake one day. Another thing that impressed me was how quiet it was up there. There's no noise pollution and not even the constant sound of a river or the ocean like we are used to at other camping spots. It was very peaceful! 

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Labor Day at Cannon Beach

On Labor Day, Christina and I headed down to Cannon Beach to hang out for the day. We had a great time! It was good to get away for a while, even if it was just part of the day. We ate lunch on the beach, walked on the beach, looked at various little shops, walked the beach some more, and had dinner before leaving town. It was raining as we drove over the Coast Range on our way, but the weather actually proved to be pretty good. It was hazy at times, but by the end the clouds had lifted off and it was quite sunny!

I've taken pictures at Cannon Beach numerous times and I wanted to travel light this time, so I brought one lens, my little 50 mm. Throughout the rest of this post I'm afraid you will see lots of Haystack Rock. There's something about it--it's just so hard not to include it in beach shots. I think it's partly because it provides a frame of reference. I was fascinated by how the pictures turned out differently, depending on the lighting and the tide at the particular time I took the picture. 

Horses! This looked like so much fun.

This looked like fun, too!

 One girl (that's Christina) against a big ocean.


Sandy beach feet.

When we got to the base of Haystack Rock, the tide was out, so the base was exposed. There were all these signs around the perimeter warning visitors not to trespass. We could still get close enough to see some tide pool creatures, though.

Sea anemone
 Star fish