I always knew how lucky I was to grow up in the beauty of Upper Kittitas County. I loved that I could escape into the woods around town during the summer. I loved that I could relax in the quiet bliss of nature. I loved knowing that my backyard was the whole of the Cle Elum Ridge and the Alpine Lakes Wilderness. I loved that I could just hike in the great wilderness that surrounded me. Anywhere, anytime.
When I arrived in Washington a few days ago, the entire state was being smoked out from wildfires in Canada, Idaho, and Oregon – as well as a few home state fires. But thankfully, the smoke has begun to subside in time for my first weekend in the Homeland. And that means that a wee hike into Pete Lake was in order earlier today. Yay!
The day’s hike was made with my niece, my brother-in-law, and my brother-in-law’s friend – starting with a 6 am pick up from my folks’ house. When we got to our lake-side destination, the four of us enjoyed a nice picnic lunch that my sister had prepared for us. Then it was time for the hike back home. All told, the day’s adventure was about seven hours long, so it’s probably understandable that I’m completely exhausted now!
Oh! And frustratingly, we got a bit of rain last night, along with some thunder and lightning. And when lightning strikes in a bone-dry forest, fires often follow. That means that there is now a small forest fire nearby on Jolly Mountain. We tried to spot it on our hike out but there wasn’t too much smoke at the time. I am sure it will be a bit more visible in the next day or two though.
Anyhow, here are some photos of the hike into Pete Lake and the beautiful mountain lake itself. I hope you enjoy the photos as much as I enjoyed the hike!