Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Mt. Sugarloaf

Mountain love and summer fun!  
This is possible my favorite hike around.  We do it at least once a summer so I've posted pictures of it several times before, but it never gets old :) Why is it so great?  It's close to our cabin, quick access to the ridges,  not a lot of brush bashing, breathtaking scenery, always possible wildlife encounters, and you can make it as long or as short as you'd like!  A classic Alaskan hike, it's a social trail designated by the amount of usage and it's word-of-mouth popularity.  Technically it was never "built" by any one person or group.  Therefore it's not on the map.  The only maintenance is by random hikers breaking off branches when they grow into the trail or kicking off rocks that have fallen onto the path.  The trail just keeps getting more and more defined as people discover it.
 Out of the brush and onto the ridge!  Breathtaking scenery begins!

 Mt. Healy (Andrew's summer office) in the background.

 Forget-me-not, the state flower.
 Mountain avens, the Alaska Range and the Nenana River.

 Taking a break at the first summit you reach.  We decided to continue on with the plan to reach a distinguished white peak on the backside of the mountain from where we were.
 This ridge will take us there.
 Dramatic scenery all around us from the rocks to the mountains to the clouds and the light.

Very cool rock features!

 You can kind of see the white dome in the distance that we wanted to reach.

Getting closer...

But we decided this was close enough for today.  We were still at least an hour away and thunderstorms were building all around us.  We took a little rest here soaking up the scenery then headed back.  We'll be back and it's not going anywhere.
 I can't stop taking pictures up here!  It was really hard to narrow them down too :)

 The scattered rain showers gave us this beautiful rainbow! 

 Such great light! Another delightful day to be alive!

Happy trails!

Motorcycles on the Stampede

On a warm summer's day back in June we hit the trail with some different toys!  Andrew picked up an old motorcycle in the Spring and my sister and her boyfriend were living with us for the summer and he brought his up from Tennessee.  Erin and I doubled on the four-wheeler and the guys took their bikes.
The first mudhole was the nastiest by far.  Deep water and soupy muck on the edges.  I didn't manage to get pictures of Andrew making the first crossing because he got sucked into the soft edges and had quite the time getting across.
Daniel watched and learned.  He took a more direct route through the deepest part but stayed on firmer ground.

The rest were a little more shallow and smoother to cross.  Still a fun challenge though!

A long muddy trail giving way to miles of smiles :)
Andrew actually decided to turn back at this point.  His bike had sucked in some water in that first hole and he didn't want to push it.
Pushing through Fish Creek.

Oopsy daisy!  It happens sometimes when you're going too slow.
Erin laughed and took pictures, then helped get the bike up.
Slick mud and tire ruts make it difficult on motorcycles.

Fun times! :)