Saturday, April 7, 2012

South Mountain

I was manic as hell when I woke up and I knew that I needed to hike, but first I had to go to an Equinox egg hunt and then I was being pressured to go to Wal-mart to buy equinox bunny stuff. 

 But I refused to be pressured or guilt tripped.  I needed to hike, so I did.  I hit the trail / road at 1:30 and walked right up the mountain, it was practically a stroll.  Wow I’m in better shape than I thought, or I was just manic.  

There was a sign at the bottom saying the road was closed due to truck traffic M-F and Simpson was putting in new logging roads.  The road was plowed up to 2,000 feet so I carried my snow shoes until I reached the parked plow then I put them and my gaiters on.  The snow was nice and hard and I could have done it without snowshoes but the added traction of my snowshoe crampons was greatly appreciated.

Northern Alligator lizard aobut to lose its forest

I don’t know what time I summited, but the signs all warning of radio frequencies kept me from staying on the summit for long.  The summit was sunny and very windy.  The view was good but not perfectly clear.  I could see the ocean and the cascade volcanoes and the Hood canal. I could not see Mount Hood; sometimes I can see Mount Hood from the summit.

Going down I had a huge hikers high and feared I had not hiked enough to kill the beast but then I sobered right up when I saw that trees well above 2,000 feet marked with logging numbers.  The numbers that log truck drivers use to tell each other where they are on the road.  No doubt, Simpson intends to log all of South Mountain.   How very sad.  I said goodbye to a few of the trees.  I might have even hugged one.  My friends will be dead soon.
<><><><><><><><><><> <><><><><><><><><><>
This tree above 2,500 feet is marked for logging

<><><><><><><><><><><> <>
This mud will run off into the salmon creek below

<><><><><><><><><><><> <> <><><><><><><><><><>
Skokomish Valley

Frullania liverwort with Ochrolechia lichen

<><><><><><><><><><><> <> <><><><><><><><><><>
Ellinor, Washington, Pershing complex in back Prospect ridge or Cushman hill in front

Will this ant hill survive logging?  The ants were very active in the sunlight in spite of the snow all around the mound.

It’s not a pretty hike up South Mountain but after the next round of logging it’s just going to be butt ugly.  I hate capitalism and what it does do to our planet.  But I sure do like my car and my new snowshoes.  
I started to feel tired on the way down so maybe I was not in such good shape after all. 
I finished up my hike at about 7pm, nice timing as the sun was due to set at 7:30.  I drove in my car because my Jeep is in the shop.  My car did fine on that road, I might take my car there from now on as it gets much better fuel economy.  After I got home I rested a few minutes and then headed off to Wal-mart to buy the Equinox stuff.  Wal-mart was crowded with last minute equinox shoppers.

About 3 miles on snowshoes and 5 miles with snowshoes on my back. Still manic as hell, but I suppose the hike took the edge off a bit. I hope I can sleep tonight.
8 miles 2,400 feet elevation gain.

That shiny thing on the horizon is the ocean and Grays Harbor

No comments: