25 Jul Day 7 – Chikamin Ridge
Spectacle Lake to Ridge Lake
I packed early then rolled out my pad on a rock to relax while enjoying the view of Spectacle Lake and surrounding peaks. A hummingbird was sitting on a pine tree nearby. I was motionless as I attempted to see how long it would rest if undisturbed. In a flash, it was hovering about 10 inches over my chest close to my nose. In order to extend the moment, I remained motionless. It hovered seconds as it drifted closer to my nose. I wondered about the danger of the long sharp beak that was clearly too close. At that moment the hummingbird disappeared.
This section of the hike was supposed to be dry and I only had a liter of water. We questioned a number of hikers passing the other direction and they confirmed that it was dry; however, after reaching the top of the first climb from Spectacle Lake we found a small muddy looking pond right off the trail. We pumped water from this pond. I cameled up by drinking both my bottles and refilled here. About a half mile further down the trail, I hiked off trail to the right for about a quarter of a mile to refill at a better lake. The others hiked on and I soon caught up.
Much of the walking was an ascent across steep open slopes. We reached the ridge top and crossed over to Chikamin Ridge. From this ridge there were views of the valley below that extends miles toward Snoqualmie. I was soon startled by hearing a sharp whistle. It was Marmots whistling. I lagged behind the others and let the Marmots continue to whistle. Eventually, one of them growled at me. I hope it was a Marmot growling and not a Mountain Lion. 🙂
While we continued to hike across an extremely long section of exposed slope just below the top of the ridge clouds thickened and grew gray. Up ahead the trail crossed a section on top of the ridge. I suggested that we keep on moving to avoid a storm while on these slopes. The storm didn’t seem to fully form so we stopped for lunch. After lunch some rain and wind started up and although we were on the ridge it was not intense. I hiked in my rain pants and hooded jacket.