(all pictures are low res, for high res click here)
This day started out wet and stayed wet the entire time. I had agreed to take Ellen and her parents on a fun hike in the cascades, so I thought it would be fun to re-visit Lake Serene. I had hiked to Lake Serene earlier in the year and everything was completely frozen, so I figured that this would be a nice change.
We started the hike off with overcast skies that were threatening to pour rain on us at anytime, but we didn't mind. As mentioned in my earlier report, there's really 2 trails on this trip - the trail to Lake Serene and the trail to Bridal Veil Falls, which is always great. The trails had been used heavily in the past, so the USFS decided to improve the trail with stairsteps , which definitely makes the hiking a lot easier. I, of course, had my pack weighted to about 50 lbs of birdseed so I was happy to have the steps. As we got closer and closer to the falls, the roar of the water got louder and louder. There was a huge rainstorm the night before, so we knew the falls would be very powerful - however we were not expecting the falls to be this powerful. This picture does not do the fury justice. Compare these two videos (long downloads!), where video 1 is of the falls frozen in winter and video 2 is of the falls after a huge spring rainfall. Both videos were shot from the same spot! After taking that video I was completely soaked , but I had a blast feeling the power of that falling water. After checking out Bridal Veil Falls, we then headed up to the lake, were we had to pass by 3 more waterfalls whereas I unfortunately fell into the water of the 2 falls and got soaked! Wow that water was cold. The hike up to the lake offered some pretty views of the valley and after 90 more minutes of hiking we finally made it to the top. The lake was displaying an amazing reflection as seen in the stitched panoramic picture at the top of the page and thru this video.
After eating some PowerGel and Cherry Flavored Craisins we headed back down to the car. Along the way, we had to stop and eat the wild salmonberries that were everywhere. YUM! Of course on the way home I stopped at the Sultan Bakery again.