Trillium Lake

Michael and I have been to Trillium Lake a zillion times but it’s always been in the winter time! It is a popular winter spot for snowshoeing and cross-country skiing. It’s been a tradition for us to go snowshoeing there on New Year’s Day most years. It is super popular, so we always get up really early to get there and get a parking spot. It’s full if you aren’t there by 9am.

But…we’ve never been there in there summer! It’s always been somewhere I wanted to try camping in the summer. But just like winter, it’s very very popular to camp there in the summer so hard to get a spot.

On Saturday over Labor Day we decided to do a little day trip. We left foggy, overcast Portland, drove up in the clouds in Mount Hood and then all of a sudden we were in blue skies!

So in the winter time you park at the top parking lot, right off the highway, for Trillium Lake and then hike down. But obviously in the summer the main road is open. Weird! We’ve never actually seen it. LOL We drove down to the day use area, which was packed. There was a guy directing people where to park, so that was nice.

We started our hike. The place was a madhouse. I guess we should have expected it, but it was a little overwhelming how crowded it was and…like no one was wearing masks but us and a few other hikers. 🙁

The lakeside was PACKED. People swimming, boating, SUP-ing, kayaking, fishing, sunbathing.

The trail is very narrow, and a bit crowded, around the lake.

And you are also hiking through campgrounds? That was a bit weird. I mean, you aren’t hiking right through campgrounds but they are on either side of the trail. So that’s good to know for the future if we ever wanted to camp there (probably not, after seeing how crowded it was).

Some of the trail was on boardwalk. And there were parts of the boardwalk that were really broken. I felt like that scene in Romancing the Stone where Kathleen Turner is trying to cross that broken bridge? 😀

I didn’t get pictures of the really bad parts! There were parts you had to kind of jump over!

The views of the lake and Mount Hood were beautiful, of course.

It was a beautiful, warm day. I wanted to go swimming SO BADLY!!!! I really miss it. Of anything in pre-pandemic life, swimming is the one I miss the most. Seriously. I’ve never not been in the pool this long. 🙁

Anyways, Logan was ready to turn around so we headed back. We were going to have a picnic but the place was SO CROWDED so we decided to go somewhere else for our lunch. We ended up at Still Creek Campground up the road. It was much nicer!

It was a small, simple campground but it was shaded and quiet and not overcrowded. There were some picnic areas too so we just stopped and had our picnic lunch by the creek.

We were right by a trailhead for Barlow Pass, too. We had a nice picnic lunch. Logan had PBJ, grapes, crackers and Paw Patrol cookies. Michael and I split a Subway sandwich. Then we packed up and headed home. Luckily, Logan slept the entire drive home! (Which is good because the way up it was “are we there yet?” every five minutes.)

So the hike was a bit of a bummer. Very flat, very crowded, we barely did 2 miles total. But at least we got to see Trillium Lake in summer time, we got outside in a very beautiful area for the day, and had a picnic. That was all good! In the future, I know some of my favorites I’d rather do!

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. 🙂