Yesterday morning. Left my house at 3:30am. With much anticipation, a last minute decision that it was THE day to head up for the two hour drive to hopes that the fog/smoke would be clear for some photos. Arrived way earlier than really needed, but that is normal for me. With the moon high above as if a light was left on in a dark house, I easily found where I wanted to be without issues, and waited…. I would have really rather there have been no moon to catch some astro shots, but it was just too bright for what I wanted. I could see the sun was going to rise to my far right from where I was standing. I was the only one there…for a moment. As the sun started to hit the top of Mt Rainier, I found myself frozen in time, mesmerized by the beauty and calmness, when suddenly I remembered I was there to take photos. Playing with settings, different lenes and compositions and locations I took some photos.
My joy was quickly shook when some ducks diving for their morning grub started making wakes in the water, which was annoying me for the type of calmness I wanted to capture. So I decided to walk down the path along the lake a bit further. Well, in my haste to get in place earlier, I decided I didn’t need to put my boots on because in my logic, there was a “path”. Well, one step over a log landed my feet in some ice cold swampy water, both feet soaked. I laughed, I had purposely wore tennis shoes for the drive with my liner socks to be under my hiking sock for a later planned hike…well, they were both soaked and cold now. I shook that off and laughed at myself. I certainly wasn’t going to walk back up the hill and not capture what I drove 2 hours at 3:30 am for… While down on the banks of the lake I met two wonderful gals each traveling separately from different states to see the sights of Mt Rainier. We chatted a bit, and I wished them well on their travels. I love seeing folks from all over just being in the moment and eager to see what nature has to offer. After my soaked feet expedition I made it back to my truck for a change of socks and shoes and made my way up to Paradise parking lot for a hike of the Skylilne trail to Panorama Point and a bit above for more photos and to take in the views.
It was a spectacular day, one that wasn’t really “planned”. Had the trails to myself mostly as the early start wasn’t what most do when venturing up the side of the mountain on a weekday. Ran into some really cool folks, shared the joys of the beauty of our Mountain as she shows off her glory on a fall day before the first snow storm that is expected in a few days.