You can see this view of Bagley Lakes from the Fire and Ice Trail in the Heather Meadows area of the Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest. This lake lies between Table Mountain (left) and Mount Herman – the Chain Lakes Trail runs right past it on the way up to Herman Saddle. I still have a lot more in this area to explore with my camera, but I was quite happy to find the lake with these sorts of colours and water levels. On the right you can see where the Chain Lakes Trail goes over a rocky slope that extends right down to the water. Now that my new computer doesn’t choke on larger resolution files, I was able to make this image with two rows of vertical images (35 of them) for the extra resolution which is how I try to shoot all my panoramas now. This worked very well, and I hope to see this one printed in the future.
The talus slope in the middle of the frame is where I photographed an American Pika a few years back. I could hear a few cheeping their warning calls while I was shooting this panorama but I wasn’t able to spot any of them.
I made a number of photographs in the Heather Meadows area of the Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest in Washington a few weeks ago – too many for one blog post. So, these are the images from Heather Meadows showing some of peaks of the North Cascades looking north. I’ll follow up with another blog post showing some different details in the Heather Meadows area soon.
Austin Pass Lake and Mount Larrabee
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Driving up the Mount Baker Highway (SR 542) brings you to the Mt. Baker Ski area, and then to the Heather Meadows Visitor Center Parking lot. From there a short walk will give a great view of Table Mountain, the Bagley Lakes, Austin Pass Lake and the North Cascade Peaks to the north. The above photo shows Mount Larrabee above Austin Pass Lake. My visit was in early October and the fall coours in the Mountain Ash, Mountain Heather and Blueberry bushes were better than I had seen before.
Bagley Lakes in the North Cascades
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This view of the Bagley Creek/Bagley Lakes in Heather Meadows shows Mount Larrabee as well as some of the more dramatic American Border Peak to the west.
Austin Pass / Heather Meadows Picnic Area View
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On the way into the parking lot at Heather Meadows one passes this picnic table in the Austin Pass Picnic Area with an excellent view of Canadian Border Peak, Tommyhoi Peak, American Border Peak and Mount Larrabee.
Heather Meadows Visitor Center
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This is a view of the Heather Meadows Visitor Center from the Bagley Lakes trail. As this area is quite near to Mount Baker itself, there is a lot of volcanic rock of various forms around the area. Viewing the larger version of this photograph you can see the top of some Andesite columns. There are many other columns to view in the area especially on the Mt. Baker Highway between Heather Meadows and Artist Point.
This is a photo I made in late September of Table Mountain in the Mount Baker Wilderness. This was along the Bagley Lakes Trail – and was one of the first short hikes I’d done in the area other than walking along the ridge near Artist Point. Being late September I was expecting that there would be few (if any) wildflowers and the Fall colours would be well on their way to starting in the various Vaccinium bushes etc. Everything was still green and the wildflowers were either just past, or still going strong (as was the case for the Lupines). I went hiking there 2 weeks later – and there STILL were hardly any leaves turning. I am curious to see what this year brings for Summer and Fall weather.
American Pika (Ochotona princeps taylori) -click to enlarge-
This is a photograph I made of an American Pika (Ochotona princeps taylori) yesterday on the Chain Lakes Trail in the Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest. I walked through the talus next to Bagley lake (4350 feet/1325 meters in elevation) and had not even thought about Pika until I heard the short squeaks of their warning calls. I could then see a few individuals scurrying from their rock perches to safety. This particular Pika came back out to sit on the rock, and I was able to slowly move closer to it to get this photograph. I took many, because you never know when wildlife is going to decide “okay, that is close enough!”. I was reminded of lectures on “Flight Initiation Distance” in University.
Pikas are not quite yet on the endangered species list, though they have come up for consideration recently. The talus slopes they inhabit must be at sufficient elevation to remain cool as the Pikas cannot tolerate warmer temperatures. Trouble is the talus operates a bit like an island, and if the environment becomes undesirable, the Pika can’t easily migrate to another. Climate change has been diminishing the available habitat and this may be one species lost early if the climate change continues. How quickly this may occur is some matter of debate.
Tabletop Mountain from the start of the Bagley Lakes trail. I am going to venture further up this trail most likely in late August -as it was closed this early in June. The fact that I went down the hill on my butt for about 6 feet while trying to protect my camera made it clear why the trail was closed. These were taken just off the upper parking lot of Mt Baker Ski Area.
I have put together some of my favourite images made in the last year into this 11"x17" (28cm x 43cm) nature calendar. Included are 12 photographs of landscape and nature scenes from British Columbia and Washington State.
I am a landscape and nature photographer based in Langley, British Columbia, Canada. Most of my subjects are in Southwestern British Columbia and the Pacific Northwest's Washington State. My photography is available for licensing as stock, fine art prints, and giclée canvas wraps.