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A windy, drizzly day in Indian Heaven Wilderness – – – a few sunbreaks, ripe huckleberries so sweet they were almost impossible to stop eating, open meadows, fresh bear sign and too many pretty lakes to count.
The 32 square-mile Wilderness lies between Mt. Adams and Mt. St. Helens. It sets on a 4,000-foot plateau with over 150 lakes and many large, open meadows to explore.
After hiking two miles to the east from the Thomas Lake Trailhead, while passing eight lakes and gaining 800 feet, I bushwhacked across the meadows for two miles to Junction Lake and the Pacific Crest Trail.
From there it was a relatively easy hike southerly to Blue Lake located below Gifford Peak. I marveled at the deep blue color of the lake.
With only 3 ½ miles to go, I savored every inch of the loop trail returning to the Trailhead.
Fireweed (top flower blooming means fall is around the corner), late-blooming Beargrass, and Mountain Ash berries
Lake Sahalee Tyee and Heather Lake