Walk in the PNW Woods


Post by WildSnow.com blogger | July 11, 2012      
Entering the forest on the Osterdome trail

Entering the forest on the Oyster Dome trail, near Bellingham, Washington. A short hike that gets you into some nice woods, as well as an open area with a view.

Here at WildSnow, we try to do something every day to stay in shape. Our theory is that at least 30 minutes a day will keep us balanced. This is especially true as we begin to re-group from our extended and busy ski season, and enjoy a few months of summer activities. While visiting the Pacific Northwest, the lush forests lure us to hike. One evening we walked to Oyster Dome above Bellingham, Washington.

Oyster Dome is a large rock cliff on Blanchard Mountain. Rising from Samish Bay, Blanchard Mountain is the point on the Cascades where mountain meets sea. We drove to the parking place off of Barrel Springs Road, Discover Pass required. From the trailhead, it’s roughly 2 miles to Oyster Dome via a lovely trail switch backing through dense, second growth forest carpeted with ferns and moss.

Forest green

Forest green

Atop Oyster Dome, overlooking the San Juan Islands.

Atop Oyster Dome, overlooking the San Juan Islands. On a clear day you can see the Olympic Mountains.

As we walked back toward the car, the setting sun set the forest on fire.

As we walked back toward the car, the setting sun set the forest on fire.


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Comments

8 Responses to “Walk in the PNW Woods”

  1. Cath July 11th, 2012 1:03 pm

    The hike from Chuckanut Drive by Larabee State Park is a good workout too. Thanks for the beautiful pics!

  2. Mark July 11th, 2012 3:11 pm

    Ah, über Dawson’s training secrets revealed!

  3. AndyC July 11th, 2012 4:09 pm

    nice hike! Visitors to PNW might want to pick up “Best Old-Growth Forest Hikes: Washington and Oregon Cascades” by John & Diane Cissel (2003 Mountaineer Books). PNW boast incredibly beautiful and complex old-growth forests and interested people would find it well-worth their time to pick out a hike or two to augment their climbing and skiing (or bicycling or whatever).

  4. Lou Dawson July 11th, 2012 4:55 pm

    Yes, and be it known, the Oyster Dome hike is not old-growth forest. You still trip over some of the logging cables…. but it’s actually looking pretty good (though not a bunch of 800-year-old giants…)

  5. Lisa Dawson July 11th, 2012 5:28 pm

    Thanks for the excellent recommendation, Andy. I had thought that old growth forests would be hard to find or inaccessible. Visitoldgrowth.com lists Canyon Lake Community Forest, a Whatcom county park, as a place where you can see 800-1000 year old trees. Wow! We’ll have to go there before we head home.

  6. Xavier July 11th, 2012 8:06 pm

    Haiku time:

    Red sunset over island sea
    Natures soft porn
    Fifty shades of green

  7. Bar Barrique July 11th, 2012 9:06 pm

    Nice hat Lou. I frequently wear a similar one that everyone thinks is fugly, but hey it works.

  8. Sandy July 13th, 2012 1:43 pm

    The Olympic rain forests are worth visiting too. Amazingly beautiful

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Welcome to Louis (Lou) Dawson's backcountry skiing information & opinion website. Lou's passion for the past 50 years has been alpinism, climbing, mountaineering and skiing -- along with all manner of outdoor recreation. He has authored numerous books and articles about ski touring and is well known as the first person to ski down all 54 of Colorado's 14,000-foot peaks, otherwise known as the Fourteeners! Books and free ski touring news and information here.

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