On the trail to Lena Lake.
Trip reports

Lena Lake

A stretch of cold, sunny weather practically demands a good hike, and Lena Lake fits the bill. First, though, an otherworldly drive through sea smoke and past eagle sentinels.

The Cascades west of Leavenworth, Washington.
North Cascades, Trip reports, Writing

Of mountains and mountaineers

Storied climber Fred Beckey died on October 30, felled by congestive heart failure at age 94 after a lifetime relentlessly dedicated to putting up routes on peaks around the world. Both Mr. Adventure and I have longstanding connections to Beckey, Mr. Adventure as a former climber and an admirer and me as an historian of the North Cascades. And last Friday, as we drove through unseasonably early snow over two mountain passes on our way to a reading in Leavenworth, we were about to be forcefully reminded of Beckey’s influence in our lives. As I got organized for my talk,…

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Wildflower park on Naches Peak
Trip reports

Naches Peak Loop

“We’re going camping this weekend. I don’t know where, but I’ll figure it out and let you know.” That was the ultimatum I texted to Mr. Adventure on Friday morning. After what seemed like several weeks of deadlines and driving and pickups and drop-offs and more driving and more deadlines, I was overcome by a powerful urge to just get the hell outside. Preferably on a high trail, and preferably somewhere I could sleep under the stars. And — I can’t believe I’m writing this, but it’s true — I hadn’t been to Mount Rainier, my go-to park, my happy…

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