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  1. #21
    Member speyguy's Avatar
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    Just Jeff,
    Great photo. I laughed a good one!

    BB,
    I've looked into and considered the Lake Chelan trip a few times. It sounds like a lot of fun catching a ride on The Lady of the Lake and getting dropped off somewhere to begin a hike. I've never done that hike but it's my understanding that it can be very hot and dry especially in Sept and in addition to bugs you have Rattle Snakes to contend with. It's a much more arid and dryer environment then the west side of the Cascades. In fact, my North Cascades guide book recommends it as an early season hike for those reasons. I also looked into the Alpine Lakes area. The photos I've seen look spectacular. It sounded like one of the most crowded areas of the Cascades. It's one of the closest to the Seattle metro area and many of the lake camp sites required a reservation in advance just to overnight camp. So that for me killed the Alpine Lakes area. I'm saving that one for some time in the future when I can do a late season hike after all the kids are back to school. Late Sept or early Oct would be ideal.

    Decisions, decisions. The Olympics in early September would be a very nice place to escape the summer heat. Lots and lots of shade. When I was there last Labor Day weekend I was very pleasantly surprised at the lack of crowds. Once I got up the trail beyond 6 or 7 miles there were very few hikers. I don't know if you are driving out from MS but there are endless possibilities. Hmm, the Bob Marshall Wilderness or Glacier NP in MT, Sawtooths in ID, Wallowa Wilderness in eastern OR, Trinity Alps in CA.................

    So many trips, so little time.

  2. #22
    BillyBob58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by speyguy View Post
    Just Jeff,
    Great photo. I laughed a good one!

    BB,
    I've looked into and considered the Lake Chelan trip a few times. It sounds like a lot of fun catching a ride on The Lady of the Lake and getting dropped off somewhere to begin a hike. I've never done that hike but it's my understanding that it can be very hot and dry especially in Sept and in addition to bugs you have Rattle Snakes to contend with. It's a much more arid and dryer environment then the west side of the Cascades. In fact, my North Cascades guide book recommends it as an early season hike for those reasons.
    Yeah, I had read that and was a little concerned about it. And that could for sure be a problem, at least until you got up pretty high. Then I hope the heat would be a little more tolerable. And that's also why I am also considering riding up Ross Lake as an alternative. But I haven't been able to determine yet to whether or not that would solve the hot/dry problem, since it is still on the east side of Mount Baker. Although, not as far east as lake Chelan plus a little bit further north. But none of that will necessarily be of any help, since it might still be on the rain shadow side of the Cascades.(I'm glad to have a local like yourself to can reinforce some of these potential problems for me).




    I also looked into the Alpine Lakes area. The photos I've seen look spectacular. It sounded like one of the most crowded areas of the Cascades. It's one of the closest to the Seattle metro area and many of the lake camp sites required a reservation in advance just to overnight camp. So that for me killed the Alpine Lakes area. I'm saving that one for some time in the future when I can do a late season hike after all the kids are back to school. Late Sept or early Oct would be ideal.
    Yes, one of my biggest worries about this trip has been the possibility of a lack of solitude. I'm used to doing most of my hiking in the Wind Rivers of Wyoming, where I have occasionally gone a day or more without seeing another human being, once you get away from the seemingly crowded parking areas. And my whole group does love the lack of crowds. This trip is a last-minute substitute for the Wind Rivers, primarily due to the continuing multiyear drought in those mountains. But though I am excited about backpacking in a new place, at the same time we hate to give up frequently having entire mountain lakes to ourselves, where we can set up camp anywhere we want to, and have great fishing just about anyplace that we are likely to be hiking or camping. But I will rule out Alpine Lakes, for now. That sounds like begging for lots of company! We are going this first week of Sept because the trip has been during this week for years, and was already planned. But if choosing Seattle again, we will choose a week or three later in the season.

    Decisions, decisions. The Olympics in early September would be a very nice place to escape the summer heat. Lots and lots of shade. When I was there last Labor Day weekend I was very pleasantly surprised at the lack of crowds. Once I got up the trail beyond 6 or 7 miles there were very few hikers. I don't know if you are driving out from MS but there are endless possibilities. Hmm, the Bob Marshall Wilderness or Glacier NP in MT, Sawtooths in ID, Wallowa Wilderness in eastern OR, Trinity Alps in CA.................

    So many trips, so little time
    No, we won't drive out, but will fly into Seattle, where we will meet our friend from North Carolina, and then head out to the chosen trail head, Olympics or Cascades. And what you're saying about the relative lack of crowds in the Olympics is starting to make that sound better and better! That is a very important piece of information. I wasn't sure if there was any place within a couple of hours of Seattle where there would not be lots of crowds on the trails.

    Yeah, the Sawtooths of Idaho have been on the list for many years. I car camped in an empty campground there one 16* October night in 86. It was truly spectacular and I have always longed to backpack there. In fact they were the primary Wind River alternative up until the last minute. We ended up choosing Washington because it was about the only western state not still showing ( at the time of planning) as under moderate to severe drought conditions, when looking at the United States drought Monitor.

    Did you notice much poison ivy or poison oak when you were hiking in the Olympics or Cascades? That's another thing that kept me in love with the Wind Rivers for so many years: no poison ivy! At least none that I have ever been able to find. Not that I'm trying to find it!


    Yes, so many trips to so many beautiful places and so little time! But I am really pleased to be informed ( from several of you ) that hammocking is going on in the Big Tree areas! And specifically in the Olympics!

    Bill
    Last edited by BillyBob58; 06-17-2007 at 14:05.

  3. #23
    Member speyguy's Avatar
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    Did you notice much poison ivy or poison oak when you were hiking in the Olympics or Cascades?
    I've never encountered any in either location but have to admit that I'm pretty ingnorant to both of those and don't think I could recognize either one if it was right in front of me.

    As far as escaping the heat by gaining more elevation, more elavation to me means less shade and more sun. But then again, I'm a blue eyed freckled skin sun weanie!

  4. #24
    Senior Member angrysparrow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by speyguy View Post
    I've never encountered any in either location but have to admit that I'm pretty ingnorant to both of those and don't think I could recognize either one if it was right in front of me.
    Let me save you some real grief:
    Attached Images Attached Images
    I think that when the lies are all told and forgot the truth will be there yet. It dont move about from place to place and it dont change from time to time. You cant corrupt it any more than you can salt salt. - Cormac McCarthy

  5. #25
    BillyBob58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by angrysparrow View Post
    Let me save you some real grief:
    Oh yes, I'm already pretty good at identifying the poison ivy, whether by its leaves or just the evil wooly vine that seems to be attached to at least every third tree in the woods here in MS. It greatly reduces available hanging trees here locally. Millions of trees to choose from down here. But find two of appropriate size and distance apart without a shrub in between, then the odds are pretty darn good that at least one of them will have the ugly evil vine growing up it, or it will be on the ground around the tree. Often that vine is all you see until you follow it with your eyes high up into the tree, and then you see the leaves of three, with the middle one longer stemmed than the two side ones. Or of course in winter/early spring with leaves gone, the vine is all you have to go by.

    I'm really hoping that as I try other locales for hanging, it will at least not be so da*ned abundant. ( or totally absent, as in Wyomings Wind Rivers, and I assume Wyomings other high mountains) I was in FLA last week. To my surprise, I noticed several places ( a KOA campground, Disney campground and a few other random spots) that had lots of good, well spaced/sized trees with no sign of poison ivy. I would have thought it would be super abundant down there. Maybe it's just because at some spots (campgrounds) they had gone to the trouble of eradicating it. Though that would seem unlikely in that KOA campground.
    Last edited by BillyBob58; 06-17-2007 at 20:45.

  6. #26
    Senior Member hikingjer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BillyBob58 View Post
    . I figured( or hoped!) there would be smaller trees ( usable for hammocks) mixed in with the gigantic ones...a climb of Mt.Baker in early June about 20 years ago, and later with my wife for dayhiking in late Aug or Sept, and I don't remember any problems at all. But I've ben reading that the black flies can be a real problem.
    Bill
    Last set of days off I hung my new Hennessy Backpacker A-sym Ultralight in the North Cascades National Park east of Mt Baker. First night was in a virgin, old-growth forest deep in the North Cascades wilderness. The overstory trees were large but there were smaller mid-canopy trees that were perfect to hang from and right over the designated tent pad. Photo at http://www.msnusers.com/hikingjer/on...o&PhotoID=1000.

    The second night I got a chance to sleep in the new HH when it was cold, down to the upper 30s with just a down quilt and a 3/4 length blue Wal-Mart foam pad. I slept but it got chilly at times. It can start to get chilly at night in the Northwest usually starting in mid-late August and especially in September nights. A trip report with photos is up at http://www.nwhikers.net/forums/viewtopic.php?t=7961560

    Did you notice much poison ivy or poison oak when you were hiking in the Olympics or Cascades?
    Except for low elevations in the Columbia Gorge on the Washington side, there's no poison oak in the Washington Cascades. There's poison oak along the Pacific Crest Trail in Washington right as it enters the state right above Hwy 14 north of the Bridge of the Gods. It's too cool and wet elsewhere I suppose. I've seen poison oak in the Oregon Cascades but mostly that's been on the south end of the Willamette National Forest and Rogue River National Forest in southwest Oregon at low elevations like around Glide, OR. Tons of poision oak in the Oregon and northern California Siskiyous.

    BTW, if anyone is interested in reading academic books on forest structures "Forest Stand Dynamics" by Chadwick Oliver is a standard text in forestry colleges. With this book, you can use big, fancy smarty-pants words about trees and forests with your hammocking jargon and acronyms.
    Last edited by hikingjer; 08-11-2007 at 16:36. Reason: thought up a better mix of words

  7. #27
    Member Egads's Avatar
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    Pac NW Hanging

    BB58,

    My wife & I went to Oregon & Washington in early July. We hiked Eagle Creek Trail, PCT, Timberline, & Graves Creek Trail enroute to the Enchanted Valley in Olympic National Park. It was a great trip.

    However, I am going to recommend that you bring a tent as the trees are rather large & spread out. You will be able to find some good trees to hang from in some areas, but not in others.

    You should have a great trip regardless of your shelter. The weather was great for us if not unseasonably hot & sunny. Hopefully, you will experience the same.

    I stopped by Feathered Friends in Seattle & asked to see their quilts. They had no idea what I was asking about. They said no one hangs out west. It seems the east coast is the leading edge for a change.

    Best to you BB58.

    Egads

  8. #28
    BillyBob58's Avatar
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    Thanks for those tips, Hikingjer and Egads!

  9. #29
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    I live in the PNW and sometimes use an HH backpackers asym.
    I bought the longer straps from HH and carry them along with the default shorter straps. You can easily interlock these to make different length combinations --- long + short, short + short, long + long, I've even gone so far as to put long + long + short around a really big tree and use the short strap on a more reasonably sized nearby tree. It adds to the flexibility of where you can hang. Nothing like the redwood picture in a previous post, but indeed sometimes the trees are too big for "east coast sized" straps.

    Poison Oak: I grew up in Oregon and went to school in central-west Oregon, there's lots or poison oak there. In NW Washington State I've never encountered it, and I've lived in the Puget Sound area for over 20 years, done lots of backpacking trips, including in the Olympics and lots of trips in the Alpine Lakes wilderness. No worries about it; basically we just don't allow such things in our more enlightened neck of the woods ... <g>

    Ditto Rattlesnakes unless you go a goodly ways east. And we mostly have just black bears, have to go pretty far north in the state to encounter brown/grizzly's. If you don't mind a bit of rain and in some times and places a lot of other backpackers, it's a wonderful place to be.

    But don't tell anyone else, there are enough of us out here now! <g>


    Brian Lewis

  10. #30
    slowhike's Avatar
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    welcome to HF brian. good to have you on board. ...tim
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