Turkey Day Hike to Chuckanut Falls

Who knew there were seven MBC members silly enough to be out in this lousy weather today? We didn’t think we’d do the hike because it was so windy at our house. But the trail was on the leeward side of Chuckanut Mountain and the wind was pretty light for almost all of the hike. We got some drizzle and a little light rain at the beginning and end of the hike, otherwise it was dry. And there was no major problem with the short muddy scramble. The area near the falls was windier however. As we were finishing our brownies and pumpkin scones (thanks Owen and Jennie), Penny pointed up at the tops of the trees swaying. Having noticed Penny’s gesture, the wind gods decided to take down a few branches. We beat a hasty retreat until we were again on the quiet part of the trail. Thanks to everyone for an enjoyable little Thanksgiving morning hike.
Photos have been posted to the MBC Album Page.
Jennie and Steve

A Walk in the Woods – Fenton Preserve

On Tuesday morning seven members were joined by Abby and Hank (Representatives of the Whatcom Land Trust) to explore Fenton Preserve.  We were told about the history of the Preserve and Whatcom Land Trust. We walked on several trails. Unsuccessfully sought salmon in Haynie Creek. Last week’s floods scoured the creek bed with no salmon evident.  Lots of fungi.  An eagle aerie viewing led to talk about when and if they will return. 
Hank was especially helpful as he has been a Steward at the preserve for years full of knowledge.  We returned to our cars around noon very thankful to have had such a beautiful morning. One eagle flew overhead to add to our enjoyment.  Every time I have been on a MBC outing the collected knowledge of the group is so impressive as well as the various interests exchanged while sharing stories.  Photos can be viewed on the MBC Flickr Album Page.

Dennis and Judy Doyle

Lily Lizard Lakes Via Alternate Incline Trail Plus North Butte Hike 2021

15 MBC members turned out for this hike today, hoping to beat the rain. The road to the Alternate Incline trail featured a view of clouds filling the valley below, and showed only a sliver of snowy Mount Baker peeking through between the foothills and the clouds above. The precipitation arrived just as we reached North Butte. Unimpressed by the view of clouds over the Salish Sea, we didn’t linger long on the slippery rocks there. Managing to stay reasonably dry under the tree cover, we made our way back via Lily Lake and then down the Lily-Lizard trail to the Upper Trailhead parking lot. This was the 10th hike I led this year, and as always, it was great to be out on the trails with friends. Photos can be seen on the MBC Flickr album page.


Lake Padden Hike 2021

My timing was off by an hour.  Earlier morning showers were light and brief, but the one beginning at 12:30 was heavy and continued until most of the walk was over.    The wind was howling across the lake, but once we entered the forest just past Padden Creek, it was quite pleasant.  Going up hill warmed us quickly.  The good news was that the jackets and pants of the three of us were mostly dry by the time we circled the lake in exactly one hour. Since it had stopped raining when we returned to the parking area, I took a little walk up some of the bridle paths above the lake.  There were some up and downs back there that caused me to pause briefly to catch my breath.    But just when I thought I was doing pretty good, a dad with three preschoolers came waltzing up the path, chattering away. There are about 5 or 6 miles of trails around and above the lake.  I highly recommend them when you need a forest walk without all the driving. A few photos are on the MBC Flickr Album page.


Goose Rock Hike 2021

The Mount Baker Club occupied Goose Rock on a beautiful sunny October day. An astounding 21 members turned out to walk from West Beach on the trail and North beach, beneath the bridge to the Perimeter Trail and around the peninsula, taking in views of Skagit/Similk/Kiket Bays and Mount Baker gleaming in the east. Then we climbed up to the summit of Goose Rock, where we enjoyed lunch and views of the San Juans, Olympic Mountains, and even Vancouver Island. It was a great day to spend in a beautiful place with a group of friends. Thanks to everyone who joined me on this hike. Photos can be viewed on the MBC Flicker Album page.


Oyster Dome Hike 2021

5 Sturdy club members took part in Friday’s Oyster Dome trek.  The cool and sunny conditions kept our bodies pushing ahead and our spirits high.  Surprisingly to all of us there were not many on the trail that day as forecasts for outside activities were not as favorable as they actually were.  Thanks to those who hiked that day, you made Friday afternoon a pleasure. More photos on the MBC Flickr page.

Michael Davis

At the Top

Stimpson Family Reserve

Who would have thought that 14 people would show up, on a Sunday morning with an apocalyptic weather forecast, just to walk around the Stimpson? Apparently our club members will take any excuse to get out of the house. 

The weather was gray but dry and calm as we started just after 9, proceeding counter-clockwise around the main loop. The plan was to reach the Geneva Pond trail near the end of the main loop, and then to decide whether to go to the pond or head straight back to the cars, depending on whether it was raining by then. The forecast was definite about rain, but we hoped to be back by the time it started. The reserve was looking green and refreshed. Golden maple leaves covered the ground in places. There were wildlife sightings (OK, two squirrels, but they still count). Mushrooms were popping up all over. The mosses were luxuriant. As we walked, the sound of wind in the trees became more insistent, and it became clear that the rain was starting early. Despite that, when we reached the fork, the majority voted to go to the pond anyway, while a small breakaway group had other things to do and went back. Without pausing to admire the effect of raindrops on the pond surface, we increased the pace and reached the parking lot slightly after the rain had really got going. Perhaps we should have started at 8:30. 

So, a pleasantly social if unspectacular outing, and we didn’t get soaked or have a tree fall on us or lose anybody. Thanks as always to those who came, and a special welcome to the new faces. 


Litter Patrol – Fall 2021

A lovely October morning, mostly sunny and 41 degrees upon arrival at milepost 37 of the Mount Baker Hwy.  Brilliant yellow leaves everywhere glowing in the sun.  Joining me were two members new to the litter patrol, and new to me was a “no show”.
It was an extremely light trash haul (Yay!), barely filling two of the DOT supplied bags with the usual collection of cans, cigarette butts, paper, plastic bottles, and plastic bits of all shapes and sizes.  AS USUAL, NOTHING OF VALUE WAS FOUND!  Some of the light load was due to fallen leaves everywhere hiding a lot of sins until next year.  I did forget to mention in my opening safety and pep talk to Team 2, that they did not have to swoosh around in the leaves looking for hidden treasures.  But I admired the dedication!  Their proudest moment came when they uncovered a tattered, tar covered old traffic cone abandoned after recent roadwork.
As the leaves fall in our slice of heaven (not talking about pizza), it is obvious just how close the Nooksack River is to the highway along miles 39 to 37.  Sometimes just a few hundred yards away.  Some may think of the River as docile, but in my Flickr photos, you can see how the powerful current washed huge trees downstream when the the River is raging.
Also in the photos, there is one that looks like Steve mixed up my order.  Not so!  In support of the MBC efforts my sister who lives in Delaware patrolled her neighborhood.  I think she gathered more trash there than we did in the two miles of the highway.  Good work, Sis!
I would like to thank Carol and Betty for their enthusiasm and upbeat approach to the litter patrol.  The next patrol will be in April 2022 when I think the trash haul will be more significant after a winter of ski bound traffic.  I always found it odd that there are always more beer cans and bottles on the way up to the mountain, than the return.  But we will deal with that in April. More photos on the MBC Flickr Page.

Whistle Lake Hike

Six MBC fortunate  enthusiastic, vaxed & masked members joined in the hike around Whistle Lake near Anacortes. A few were new to this lovely trail. We were greeted by a bit of a marine layer which partially burned off with enjoyable sun patterns as we progressed up & down around the lake through the Family Forest trails. Though the parking lot was nearly full we met very few people aside from 1 other hiking group. We stopped for lunch in a clearing above the lake while enjoying the reflections & observing a bald eagle or 2.   Two of our environmentally alert hikers noticed & picked up a couple of beer containers & other trash & transported it to a disposal bin.  The group maintained humor & shared good feelings all around.I’m appreciative that on my first trip as leader that no one got lost, hurt or rebellious & smiled throughout. It was a fun day.


Whose Scat Is That?

Thanks to the eight club members who joined me Ryan Johnson to play these and other fun games at Silver Lake.  We got to experiment with four or five fire-starting techniques (and develop a greater appreciation for matches), make our own tinder balls and learn some common edible plants.  There’s much more, but perhaps you’d just like to sign up to fill the two remaining spots next Sunday – one in the morning session and one in the afternoon.  We really had a great time and learned in the process!  Thanks, Ryan.  You put together a thoughtful entertaining and educational program for us!
Thanks to all who signed up, showed up and shared; it was a great time! 

That was a great way to spend a morning, and to develop a real appreciation for those that have the ability to start a friction fire! Ryan got an ember from his hands and a drill set up, the rest of us struggled to even get a wisp using a bow drill setup. Ferro rod and steel was a different story though, after learning to make a proper tinder ball. The woods walk was up all of our alleys but Ryan knows a lot more about what we see. Great day!

Thanks Laura for organizing this, it was awesome! Well, except maybe for all of the distractions from the pesky eagles and Kingfisher 😀- Jim