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Posts Tagged ‘Backpacking’

On the Wonderland Trail around Mt Rainier
Fellow trail maniac Marjan and I joined a group of Microsoft hikers to raise money for WNPF and to backpack ~1/3 of the Wonderland trail, from Mowich Lake to Sunrise.

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Perfect camp site overlooking Spider Meadow
A backpacking trip that almost transplanted me back to good ole Switzerland: Spider Meadow has a very alpine look, with an open meadow down in the valley, flowers and marmots galore, surrounded by rugged mountains on either side and waterfalls pouring off the cliffs. Big difference to hiking in the Swiss Alps: here in the National Forest, one can readily camp in the backcountry. I even found a camp site made in heaven, more below.
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We picked Boulder River trail as our first gear-check backpacking trip. Weighed down with 30-35lbs packs, we hiked a mostly comfortable trail follows Boulder River with plenty of ups and downs. Final altitude gain was only 400ft. At the end of the trail, we barely couldn’t find a free camp site among the 6-8 sites available. Right next to the river, we snatched the last site, fitting one tent. A large boulder next to it served as balcony, kitchen and dining room.

The Mountain House freeze-dried dinners are quick to cook but can be on the salty side; certainly the Beef Stroganoff was, the Oriental-style chicken was better.

Nighttime temperatures were moderate in the 50s and dry, so tent and sleeping bags were comfy.



Getting there:
From the Darrington Ranger Station, take State Route 530 west for 8.2 miles to the French Creek Road #2010 (miles post #41). Turn left (south) onto road #2010 and follow for 3.7 miles to the trailhead.

Stats:

Trail/map: MBS NF #734 / Green Trails #77 & #110
Distance: 8mi / 12.8km roundtrip
Elevation gain:  400ft / 120m
High point: 1400ft / 420m
Hiking time: ~2:30hr in, 2:30hr out
Weather: sunny, 75 at TH

Hikers:
Marjan, David

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