Hiking, The pups

Summer lookout

Hike-a-Thon begins this week, so I need to get caught up on these trip reports! July has been absolutely amazing, but all of these adventures (plus a healthy dose of procrastination) have created quite a blog backlog. Let’s get to it.

Paintbrush at the lookout

Thorp Mountain is a laid-back summer favorite of mine. A pleasant trail to a great swimming lake, followed by a slightly less pleasant but definitely beautiful trail to an old fire lookout with tremendous views.

Synchronized swimming

We’ve hiked here three Julys in a row, and at this point it just wouldn’t feel like summer without a trip to Thorp. This time we brought Ada along, and she spent the entire hike finding and fetching sticks of various shapes and sizes.

Yes Ada, that's a perfectly reasonable stick to fetch

You shall not pass!! Oh, you found a stick?

The wildflowers around the lookout were slightly past their prime, but still put on a good show.

Thorp Mountain Lookout

We had a lunch and lazed around on the summit for a while (well, everyone except Ada – she was fetching sticks), taking in the views of the Alpine Lakes Wilderness, Mount Rainier, and my new best friend, Mount Adams.

A Raisin in the Sun

It was Basil’s birthday, so he got some extra snuggles and treats to celebrate. We don’t actually know when he was born, so we’re celebrating his adoption day instead. This lovable little raisin of a dog has brought us lots of happiness since we adopted him a year ago, and he and Wellie are inseparable. Best brothers, best buds.


Unfortunately, the birthday boy is allergic to mosquitoes, so when the breeze died down and the little bastards came out in full force, we just had to get out of there. Benadryl is not a good birthday present!


We jogged down most of the trail, but I was having my first bad run in a while. I got my first side stitch since winter (I must have been holding my breath on the loose, sandy downhill bits), and my hair tie snapped, leaving me with an out of control, frizzy mane that was incredibly annoying in the heat.

The last two miles felt good, though, especially when we got to the swimming hole by the trailhead. I just took off my pack and walked right in to cool off. The water was absolutely freezing and absolutely heavenly. Basil hid in the shade while JK joined me in the pool, followed by Wellie who jumped in to rescue us.

Trailhead swimming hole

And Ada? She was still fetching sticks. Some things never change, like summer traditions (hopefully!) and obsessive-compulsive dogs.

– Thorp Lake & Lookout | 8 miles | 2300 feet elevation gain –

The hike is over but she's still finding sticks

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  • Reply ARC July 29, 2013 at 8:23 pm

    OK, I HAVE to know -do you drag your DSLR on all these hikes? Your photos are amazing.

  • Reply Ingunn July 29, 2013 at 8:48 pm

    I bring it unless I’m planning to run a lot (like my previous report from Mount Defiance, for that one I brought a small camera instead).

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