Forum Index > Trip Reports > Lake Ann, Mt Shuksan 09-01-2007
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Old Not Bold Hiker



Joined: 12 Dec 2006
Posts: 4555 | TRs
Location: Bend Oregon
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Old Not Bold Hiker
PostSun Sep 02, 2007 9:51 pm 
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Its a long drive from my Kirkland home to Mt Baker, so I usually seem to end up on Rainier, which is closer.  But I kept hearing about Shuksan and Lake Ann and figured I would see if it was worth the drive.
It was worth the drive.

We hit the trailhead after accumulating a carpool over several stops. Didn't hit the trail until 9am. I left my house a bit after 5:30am to get there.  Only a couple of cars in the lot at that hour and the weather was breaking up nicely already into "partly cloudy".   I wasn't sure what to expect with previous reports from fairly recently talking about snowfields and many stream/creek crossings.

We did go prepared for wading, carrying river shoes, and I took a LOT of flak for THAT dead weight. Creek crossings were all easy rock hops or almost dry beds. The couple of tiny snowfields were nothing compared to Rainier a few weeks before.  The only sketchy spot was the scree scramble to get around the small ridge near the "end" of the hiker's trail heading up to the foot of the Curtis Glacier. We stopped before the final much sketchier snowfield and the trail turning into more of a climbers scramble.   I am not one for major exposure, scrambling over rotten granite that slides into oblivion.  We saw a couple of other people cross that spot. One person did a walk in the park, then his wife froze in terror halfway across.  YMMV.

Views were well worth the hike on a nice day.  We had planned to do another hike on the same day, but the detours and dawdling just ate up the day. Lunch overlooking Lake Ann, looking towards Shuksan, bolted us down way too long and once we made the scree scramble it was hard to leave, and the sound of rumbling glacier kept us looking for action on the glacier.  An eagle soaring in the heights kept us a bit entertained, as did the bear at the very start. We watched some climbers up on the saddle of Shuksan (find one in the photo and rope to the other one).  Blueberries were tasty.

The trail took a lot of focus for us old geezers for most of the hike, varying between mud and loose granite for most of the way.  So with the need to focus on where we placed our feet and the competing wonderful views, progress was not especially fast on what we figure was only a total 10.2 miles and my watch said 2700 feet of total elevation gain.
LOTS of backpackers were coming in throughout the day.  The lake must look like a suburban cul-de-sac at night!

I WILL go back again!
High cirrus clouds above Mt Shuksan
High cirrus clouds above Mt Shuksan
darn tourists, interupting my huckleberry breakfast
darn tourists, interupting my huckleberry breakfast
Lake Ann, between Shucksan and Mt Baker
Lake Ann, between Shucksan and Mt Baker
Lake Ann, between Shucksan and Mt Baker
Lake Ann, between Shucksan and Mt Baker
Mt Shuksan glaciers
Mt Shuksan glaciers
Mt Shuksan, Lower Curtis glacier close
Mt Shuksan, Lower Curtis glacier close
Lower Curtis Glacier, Mt Shuksan
Lower Curtis Glacier, Mt Shuksan
Mt Baker with Lake Ann and flowers in the foreground
Mt Baker with Lake Ann and flowers in the foreground
Mt Shucksan, over Lake Ann
Mt Shucksan, over Lake Ann
Shuksan
Shuksan
Baker lake and the valley below the Lower Curtis glacier from Shuksan
Baker lake and the valley below the Lower Curtis glacier from Shuksan
Find the climber on Mt Shuksan
Find the climber on Mt Shuksan

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friluftsliv
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Elvis
Shuffl'n



Joined: 09 Jun 2004
Posts: 1803 | TRs
Location: del Boca Vista
Elvis
Shuffl'n
PostSun Sep 02, 2007 9:59 pm 
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Excellent!  Great photos... great trip!

I've been planning on visiting Lk Ann on Sept 9th... but the road closure has thrown a kink into my itinerary.

~E

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"Ill habits gather unseen degrees, as brooks make rivers, rivers run to seas."  ~John Dryden
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payton
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Joined: 11 Jul 2006
Posts: 188 | TRs

payton
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PostMon Sep 03, 2007 7:55 pm 
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Nice pictures!  We were just there today but it wasn't nearly as nice with the overcast skies and clouds obscuring the top of Shuksan.  There was also apparently a bear hanging around today too, as some other hikers spotted it on the slopes beyond the lake.  Unfortunately, we couldn't find it when we got there.  Where exactly did you see your bear?  I wonder if it is the same one.  I think we'll have to go back again on a nicer day. smile.gif
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Bryan K
Shameless Peakbagger



Joined: 29 Sep 2005
Posts: 5065 | TRs
Location: Headed west soon
Bryan K
Shameless Peakbagger
PostMon Sep 03, 2007 7:57 pm 
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Great pictures. I can't get enough of close up glacier pics up.gif  up.gif

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www.youtube.com/bkraai | www.flickr.com/photos/bkraai/sets/
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Old Not Bold Hiker



Joined: 12 Dec 2006
Posts: 4555 | TRs
Location: Bend Oregon
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Old Not Bold Hiker
PostMon Sep 03, 2007 9:14 pm 
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payton wrote:
Nice pictures!  We were just there today but it wasn't nearly as nice with the overcast skies and clouds obscuring the top of Shuksan.  There was also apparently a bear hanging around today too, as some other hikers spotted it on the slopes beyond the lake.  Unfortunately, we couldn't find it when we got there.  Where exactly did you see your bear?  I wonder if it is the same one.  I think we'll have to go back again on a nicer day. smile.gif

First valley on the Lake Ann Trail...where we saw the bear
First valley on the Lake Ann Trail...where we saw the bear

We saw the bear as we broke out of the trees into the first valley. It crossed the trail and wandered down to the floor of the valley and into the small trees in the valley.  A pretty mellow dude really, just eating his berry breakfast and the bear was timid enough that we didn't feel nervous. It looked pretty young too.

We definitely lucked out on the weather! Just enough clouds to add interest to the sky and keep from being baked on Baker, but not enough to obscure anything, although having a polarizer helped cut through the moisture laden haze.
Lake Ann reflection
Lake Ann reflection

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friluftsliv
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Forum Index > Trip Reports > Lake Ann, Mt Shuksan 09-01-2007
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