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Jonny V
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PostThu Jun 25, 2020 9:18 pm 
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Had a great hike up onto Goat Mountain today. I was the second car at the trailhead at 8AM. Road is fine. A few potholes but nothing major. I ran into the lady and her two dogs that owned the first car fairly early in the hike as she was already coming back down. This pleased me greatly knowing there was no one else in front of me from here on out.

The trail was really nice, very smooth with hardly any roots or rocks. There were lots of cold little creeks to cross so with a filter you donít need to carry much water. It did gain altitude pretty rapidly at first and after about 2.5 miles and a couple of thousand feet of vertical gain I began to break out of the trees. Snow patches started at 4,500' and it didnít take long before I was climbing on solid snow cover. It was a little hard to stay on track but I had the first lady and her dogís prints to follow and I had been a long time ago so I knew I just had to go up and stay a bit to the south.

Typical travel climbing out of the trees

Soon I broke out into much bigger views.

First view of the west horn of Goat Mtn (the less horny horn)

The area surrounding the Nooksack River is one of my favorite areas of the Cascades and the views did not disappoint!

Mt. Shuksan

Mt. Baker

Shuksan and Mt. Sefrit

Looking up Ruth Creek towards Hannegan Pass

I was directly across the valley from the Mt. Baker Ski Area and I could see the lifts and the lower lodge.

Mt. Baker Ski Area

Mt. Baker Closeup
Mt. Baker Closeup

Baker closeup

I reached the site of a former fire lookout that is totally gone now but I climbed a couple of hundred feet higher to the top of a knoll with a commanding view of not only Goat Mountain but an incredible scene stretching from Hannegan Peak to Mt. Baker. The weather was perfect and I was absolutely alone up there. No one even came up during my stay above the trees and I only saw a few people total and they were all coming up as I was going down into the tree section again. Gotta love having a mountain to yourself!

Goat Mtn.

From the knoll I could see both horns of Goat Mountain. Iíd sure like to climb it someday but itís a long, long day with a lot of vertical so that will probably never happen. Well, maybe.

Spring has Sproing!


I started at 8AM and even with a long lunch up high I was back to the car fairly early so I drove back down to the highway and then up to Heather Meadows which is by the ski area. Picture Lake is melted out and the parking area at Heather Meadows was open. Austin Pass is still closed. I would have to say that the drive from the Nooksack River up to Heather Meadows is one of the more spectacular drives in the state and thatís saying a lot!

Goat Mtn from road to Picture Lake

Someday I will hang out in the evening until I get a perfect reflection shot from Picture Lake!
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FiresideChats
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PostFri Jun 26, 2020 6:34 pm 
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That's a nice day. Thanks for Sharing. I like the annotated pics too, with feature names. I'd like to do that a bit more.
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Jonny V
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PostFri Jun 26, 2020 6:43 pm 
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Thanks for the kind words. Yes, I love the PeakFinder app!
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Brushbuffalo
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Location: there earlier, here now, somewhere later... Bellingham in between
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PostFri Jun 26, 2020 6:44 pm 
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Beautiful area with superb views. Thanks for the great shots.
Did you note the unusual vertical hole right next to the trail?  Edit: oops, the hole ( an inter- clast feature in an old rockfall deposit) is actually on the nearby Excelsior Pass trail, not the Goat Peak trail. My bad memory.
Jonny V wrote:
reached the site of a former fire lookout that is totally gone now

So you diverted from the main trail to find the lookout site?  It is 200 or 300 yards away and requires intentionality since the spur to it is getting overgrown.

--------------
Passing rocks and trees like they were standing still
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Jonny V
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PostFri Jun 26, 2020 6:49 pm 
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Iím not 100% sure but I think I did divert from the main trail route. Everything there was snow covered so I was just heading up. I think I reconnected with the main trail higher above the knoll as there was a few bare sections. I did not see any big holes. From what I could tell, the main route bypasses the knoll on the west.
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Brushbuffalo
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PostFri Jun 26, 2020 7:00 pm 
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Jonny V wrote:
From what I could tell, the main route bypasses the knoll on the west.

That makes sense.  The site has all four concrete foundation blocks and the usual rusty nails and half- melted glass fragments...and a spectacular view of Shuksan!

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Passing rocks and trees like they were standing still
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Jeff
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Location: Someone get me out of Everett, WA
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PostSat Jun 27, 2020 12:47 pm 
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I never realized there were multiple Goat Mountains in Washington, but I guess I shouldn't be surprised.

It looks like a nice outing. I've only done the one near Baker Lake on 20.
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kitya
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PostSat Jun 27, 2020 3:37 pm 
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Jeff wrote:
I never realized there were multiple Goat Mountains in Washington, but I guess I shouldn't be surprised.

Albert Hale Sylvester who personally named more than 3000 geographic features mostly in Central Cascades was known for his saying that there are "more Goat Mountains than goats in the Northwest".
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