Sauk Lake Hike

By Leslie Parks - Sunday, August 03, 2014

A couple of years ago we hiked this spectacular hike; Sauk Mountain.  The view was amazing right from the parking lot.  Definitely a beautiful hike especially now that the wildflowers are all in bloom. When we started looking for a hike at the end of July, three of them were contenders:  Excelsior Ridge, Hannagan Pass and Sauk Mountain.  The first two were still closed due to snow.  So Sauk Mountain was it.  It took us a while to get our act together and leave the house but we did.  Sometimes the truck is just too small for our family of five.  Oh, it isn't the room inside the truck it's our pride and self-centeredness that doesn't fit.  Once we were up there though things were different.  Skagit was happy to not be in the truck anymore.  We were happy to start.  We arrived at the trailhead around 11:30 and quickly had lunch.  It was so foggy that we couldn't see down to the valley floor.  I loved it.  It was beautiful light and almost mysterious.  We hiked up the switchbacks through the fog.  At the saddle we took a break to sled and eat and play around.  At first we were going to hike to the peak but we've already done that and the lake was calling us.  Actually I bribed the kids with pizza to hike down to the lake.  Roundtrip to the peak it would have been a little over 4 miles, but the lake added another two miles to that. It was a good hard hike.  We gained about 1200 ft from the parking area to the saddle and then dropped about 1000 ft at the Lake.  The trail was a little lost in the snow but not so much that we couldn't find it.  We saw marmots, scat with bones and fur in it.  Fish that were begging to be caught in the lake, a broken cooler, and a trashed tent.  On the way down to the lake though Lona had completely slipped off the trail and was hanging onto plants to keep her from slipping anymore down the slope.  She was a little scared.  I grabbed her hand and hauled her up.  I wish I would have taken a photo instead. Oh another funny thing was the water bottle incident right at the beginning.  Skagit had a movement on the trail.  John took a stick, flicked off the trail, Isaac bent down with a stick to scrape the rest of it off the trail when the water bottle fell out of his pack over the edge and right into the pile.  When I came around the corner they were part laughing, part disgusted, part mad at the whole thing.  It would happen to us because there is some kind of adventure when we are around.  By the time we were returning back to the truck the clouds lifted and we could see all the way to the sound.  It was gorgeous.  Skagit though was done by the end of it.  He couldn't even put his front paws up on the tailgate of the truck and by the night he was dragging his butt around.  Fine the next day but that night he was sore.

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