Saturday, December 06, 2014

19 June 2014 Camel's Prairie

When returned to our hotel the evening prior, Ali went back to work reviewing the maps to look for another path into Camel's Prairie. It appeared there was a snow mobile trail which led to the correct path. Armed with that information, we stopped for a visit at the forest office for confirmation. After the visit, we knew the plan was good.

The road wasn't always ready for travel.

The weather was finally cooperating. The views got better as we rose in elevation. We also started to see more wildflowers.

Unlike yesterday's battle through an ever-collapsing path, today's ascent was easy and let us enjoy things like the remaining snow piles.

Camel's Prairie was awesome! Seeing early spring wildflowers in late June and looking across at snow-capped peaks was a highlight of the trip. We didn't see any elk, but saw plenty of signs they were active in the area.

We finally made it! Yes, Ali is holding the cache. ;-)

It was time to leave the prairie and make our way down.

Our next stop was supposed to be Roosevelt Grove Cedars and a visit to Granite Falls. The cache in the area was still active, but the forest service sign said no foot traffic so we sadly moved on. Hopefully, we can return and visit this area on a day this beautiful in the future.

With no stop at the Granite Falls area, Ali improvised and sent us to Huff Lake, a quaking bog. With a new flower, a boardwalk, ducks, and a beaver, it was a hit.

Bog laurel

Across the fen

We eventually came upon one of the stranger sights we've seen in a national forest. A shoe tree was located not far from the parking area. It was the largest shoe tree we've seen with an odd collection of footware. The trilliums nearby were an unexpected sight.

I'm not so sure the ones below were ever a daily wear.

Moun10Bike's stencil on the side of the ammo can near the shoe tree.

We were crossing Granite Creek when we spotted a large grouse happily plucking the fresh, spring growth off the trees.

Our last hike of the day took us to an overlook of Priest Lake. The journey there also gave us three more orchid sightings.

Solomon's Seal

Coralroot Orchid

Tway Blade

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