hiking on Mt Hood

Mirror Lake and a Girl’s Day

On Thursday I took Logan to daycare and then Miss B and I got to do our own thing! I packed up some stuff and we drove up to Mount Hood, listening to Beth Hart and Lucinda Williams CDs. Bella was super excited for an adventure!

It was such a nice day and I had the whole day to do whatever I wanted. I wasn’t really up for working out yet (still a little sick) but an easy hike in some fresh air sounded right. I looked around for some hikes near us but found that the Gorge hikes are still largely closed due to the Eagle Creek Fire last year. Multnomah Falls is open but not all the way. So I decided to drive out to Mirror Lake.

Mirror Lake has been on my To Do List for years! It’s a super popular hike, though, and so we’ve never done it. Thee’s not a ton of parking available and it always fills up fast.

I got to the trailhead at 9:20 AM and I got the last parking spot (barely).

Bella and I got ready and headed out on the trail. You cross a bridge right away and I had to kind of wrangle Bella to get up on it and walk across and then she was ok. We hiked through the forest on a pretty manicured trail and then crossed another bridge.

Bella did great! The trail started to climb a little bit but it was never too steep or difficult. I thought it would be a good hike for Logan to do but then we came to this little area of rock scramble:

It looks worse than it was but it would be hard for a toddler to navigate. So not sure if Logan is ready for this one yet,

After the rocks, there were some mild switchbacks. We hike through the old growth alpine forest. It was fairly crowded but not too bad. Not like I imagine weekends to be! We got to a fork in the trail and took a left across this bridge:

The trail climbed again through some more forest and then it opened up and I got glimpses of the lake. Oh, one thing to note: The mosquitoes were SUPER bad! I got a few bites! Thankfully I had some bug spray in my backpack and so I put some of that on (a little too late, though).

The trail goes around the small lake and then there are parts of the forest that open up to the lakeside and you get THIS amazing view!

HELLO! There’s the mountain! What a perfect picture, too! It was so pretty. And all around the lake there were swarms of butterflies EVERYWHERE! It was kind of creepy, honestly! So many!

I walked around the lake (it’s pretty small) and then headed back down the trail. All in all it was a really nice, fairly easy hike. It’s good for older kids and was good for dogs. It would be a nice place to hike in and have a picnic lunch by the lake. Don’t forget your bug spray!

We got back to the car. I had packed some lunch in a cooler but it was only 11am so I decided to just drive home and eat there. Home to have lunch, shower, nap (I was worn out!) and then I spent the afternoon at the Oregon Humane Society.

I did NOT come home with a cat. 😉 But there were plenty of adorable ones! I found one that I loved. But she was a) a kitten–and I think I want a cat that’s around a year or two old and b) she looked exactly like Yggdrasil but with gold eyes. It made me cry a bit when I saw her and I just couldn’t do it. I think my next cat will have to look different than my baby did, otherwise I think I’d feel too sad.

But it was nice to look around. There were a TON of kittens at the Humane Society!

FRIDAY

Friday I went to the gym and then I got to take my new car on a little mini road trip! Some friends came over and we went to Sokol Blosser for a picnic lunch and tasting. None of them had ever been there, so it was nice to share it with them.

We had various cheeses, hummus and naan, tons of fruit and crackers. It was such a perfect day for a picnic!

After that we spent the rest of the afternoon enjoying the sun and nice breeze at Stoller:

I stuck with water at the second place and they split a bottle of the Stoller Chardonnay (they all loved it as I knew they would!). It was nice just lounging in the chairs in the sun catching up with friends. I think Erika and I are going to do the Stoller 5k Race next year!

It was such a nice day! I got slightly sunburned, even though I used sunscreen! But other than that, it was chill and relaxing and perfect for my soul. 🙂

Not Quite Paradise

Saturday we tried to go to a hike on Mt. Hood, Enid Lake, but the directions we had weren’t great and we couldn’t find the trailhead. Instead we ended up doing Paradise Park and Little Zig Zag Falls. The Zig Zag Falls were really pretty and an easy walk from the parking lot. The whole “hike” was a little over half a mile round trip.

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The mini falls were really pretty and if you got too close to them it was FREEZING! There was a little picnic area and that was about it. The trail ended. I posted a short video on Instagram of the falls.

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We went back down the trail and then drove down the road a bit to a trail head for Paradise Park.

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You walked through a primitive campground to get to the trailhead and then the trail went through old growth trees and the ground was covered in lush green moss.

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The first part of the trail was pretty flat and you walked on soft ground, which was nice. We were the only people on the trail. Then it started going uphill and there were some switchbacks.

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It was a lot steeper than we were expecting and our hearts were pounding. I talked to my chiropractor and he thought that my back injury was an accumulation of my back feeling tight, sitting in the car, and then doing a steep hike with an incline–where you are forced to lean forward as you climb. And that did me in.

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Despite my back issues, the hike was okay. There wasn’t a stunning view, the climb up the side of the mountain kept you in the trees but you got glimpses of the area around you through the trees and you realized just how high up you were.

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We stopped to rest and have lunch (I had a PB&J sandwich), gave Bella some water and continued up the trail a bit. Then I decided I’d had enough and we turned around. It was easier going back down but my back was still bothering me.

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We did just under 4 miles and I burned 507 calories. Then my back went out. 🙁
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You guys know the rest!

As of today I am feeling a LOT better! No back spasms since Sunday night. I went to the chiropractor Monday afternoon and got a massage yesterday. I’m back at work and glad I have a standing desk, I think that’s helping. So far so good!