McKenzie Pass to Big Lake

August 23, 1986

On the trek from McKenzie Pass to Big Lake (almost Santiam Pass), the cool morning air we started in was just right for hiking. The high lava beds near Belknap Crater showed variety in their form, and it was almost startling to look up from watching my feet on the lava trail to see North and Middle Sisters towering above us. We took a side trip to the windy top of Little Belknap to take in the views to the north and south. Our pause there gave our two Oakridgers a chance to catch up with us. (Their plans to meet us at the trailhead didn’t quite work, so we were glad they caught us early.) We had lunch with a view of Mt. Washington, and continued the hike around the mountain on the PCNST and down to Big Lake with at least one great view of Hoodoo and Hayrick.

Another time it would be fun to hike in the other direction, and to have a view of the Sisters as the hike ended. A different variation for the trip would be to backpack for one night and to find George Lake for the campsite. This time it would have been nice if the trail was less dusty—we all looked like living versions of “Pig-pen”. Many thanks to Lee Hatch for helping with the car shuttle.

Hikers were Jan and Rich Anselmo, Glenn Aplin, Richard Heinzkill, Susie Kerr, Pauline Longstaff, Hank Morrison, Mary Ellen West and leader, Mary Fulton.


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