Rigdon/Wahana Lakes

September 15, 2005

The purpose of this outing was twofold: First, to explore the re-growth status of the 9-year-old Rigdon Burn and second, to visit the seven lakes in the North Waldo drainage. Sullivan’s Rigdon Lakes hike passes three of these lakes in an eight-mile loop hike. A four-mile (round trip) extension of the Rigdon Lakes hike, east down to the Wahana Lakes Trail, was required to reach the remaining lakes. The re-growth has been surprisingly minimal, considering that the fire occurred in 1996. Lots of fireweed and pearly everlasting, plus grasses in the wetter areas, were visible. But much of the ground remains bare. There was scattered evergreen re-growth, but none of the saplings was more than two feet in height. Nonetheless, the environment was beautiful in an unusual way, with the burn covering more than 80% of the 12 miles hiked. The lakes were also very attractive, despite all having been burned over. All had somewhat the same appearance, yet all had unique differences in size, shape and setting. Only two of the lakes are off trail and only one, Whig Lake, is a bit difficult to locate. Our hiking group agreed that the 10-hour day required to complete this hike was well worth their time. Walt remarked that this had been the best hike he had been on in recent weeks. Congratulations to Sam and Elizabeth who were participating in their first official (fourth overall) Obsidian hike. Hikers were members Tyler Burgess, Elizabeth Chandler, Dan Christensen (leader), Walt Dolliver, Sam Houston, and non-members Wayne Gripp and Frank Lulich.

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