June 13, 2004
This hike is accessed by driving up Highway 58 to Westfir and turning
north onto the Aufderheide Scenic Drive.
As usual we stopped at the ranger station for a comfort stop and to look
at maps and other information.
The first part of the route is along the Alpine trail, a popular mountain
2004 had been an unusually warm and dry year up until two or three weeks
before our hike.
Then it almost seemed that March had returned, i.e., cold temperatures and
day after day of rain.
The trail was mostly good, but there were segments fairly deeply grooved
primarily by mountain bikes.
We saw larkspur, wood violets, bunch berry dogwood, monkey face, arrow leaf
balsam root daisys, rhododendron in bloom, a few early lupine, sedums,
lomatiums, a few late trillium, bleeding hearts, false solomons seal,
vanilla leaf, oxalis, and numerous other flowers I cannot name.
We started out in an Oregon mist which wet the shrubs which in turn wet
our legs and boots.
The temperature was cool.
The fog and mist let up after a while and we completed the hike without
We had lunch at the site of the old lookout.
On clear days one can see Diamond Peak and the Sisters and the lesser peaks.
For us on this day the fairly low cloud ceiling gave us glimpses of the
snow-covered lower slopes of the major peaks.
On the return trip the ceiling had lifted enough to give us better views.
Allan Coons, leader.