Rock Mountain Hike

Rock Mountain, near Stevens Pass, is a mountain I've attempted three times - twice this summer. The mountain has two routes. One is an easy trail through the forest. The other is a difficult trail in the sun and through about 100 switchbacks. In June, Jamie and I tried the easy route, but the access road was blocked by a fallen tree so we had to return to the hard route we had tried a few years before. The sunny trail was colored with flowers, but after over 80 switchbacks in the intense heat, Jamie had enough. We retreated once again without a summit.

Since I have always made my summit on my first or second attempts, I had to get serious for the third attempt so I bought along Matt, in August. This time the weather was much different. It was raining heavily on the drive up, but luckily there was only a light mist by they time we reached the trailhead. We slogged up through the soaked switchbacks and continued past the point where I had turned back in June. All the colorful flowers from the last attempt were gone, except for one late summer flower called the Mountain Bog Gentian. We continued up to the ridge and were soon on the summit. We didn't stay long as we were shrouded in fog and it was cold and windy. Though it wasn't very scenic this time around, I'm still relieved to have finally conquered Rock Mountain.

So much for the easy route

Halfway Up


Mountain Flowers

Different weather the second time

Rock Lake

Near the summit, where the easy trail meets the hard trail

At the Summit

At the Summit

Mountain Bog Gentians

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June 20/August 22, 2004