Volcano Stomp: Ringing in the New Year Pacific Northwest Style

I didn’t stay up late to watch television so I could see the famous ball drop in New York City’s Times Square. I didn’t get drunk on champagne or stay out all night dancing. I didn’t even stay up late playing Scrabble.

Nope, I went to bed around 9 p.m. so I’d be ready to head for the hills & hit the slopes this morning.

By the time I got to the Marble Mountain Sno-Park in the Mt. St. Helens National Volcanic Monument (the famous Washington State volcano that blew its top in 1980 and is still active) at around 10:30 a.m., snowshoes & camera ready for action, there were already a few cars (mostly Subarus) in the lot & snowmobiles buzzing around on their designated tracks.

But after about a mile, the ski/snowshoe trail diverged from the snowmobile track and we settled in for a peaceful hike to June Lake, described here: https://www.waterfallsnorthwest.com/waterfall/June-Lake-Falls-5264 

We got lucky with a brilliant bluebird sky, packed snow and no wind. Winter conditions in the western Cascade Mountains aren’t typically so mild — or sunny. 2018 definitely started out right!

With my day pack full of gatorade, sandwiches & other gear, I was thankful to have my lightweight Fuji X-T1 along. Unfortunately, the new telephoto lens I ordered recently hasn’t arrived yet & I wasn’t able to get good shots of the adorable water ouzel (American dipper) or the flashy kingfisher feeding in the lake. I look forward to testing the lens (XC 50-230mm F4.5-6.7) soon on another adventure.

If you live in the Pacific Northwest or are planning a winter visit, be sure to check out our many snowshoe opportunities — such a perfect activity for photographers wanting to escape to unique and out-of-the way locations.



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