– Ben Martens

Mowich Lake

Saturday was our one year anniversary. 365 days ago, Tyla and I had our first date, and for some reason, she has put up with me for a whole year. To celebrate, we drove down to Mowich Lake.

Mowich Lake is located in the northwest corner of the park, a part I have never been to. It is the deepest and largest lake in the park. You access the lake via a 17 mile long dirt road. Before you go, make sure you check the website to see if the road is open. It just opened last Thursday so it takes them a while to get it ready for traffic. I think the next time we go back, we’ll take an SUV or a truck. The Subie survived, but I felt a bit bad about bouncing it along those washboard roads. Thankfully, the dirt road keeps a lot of people away and there were not a ton of people around. Don’t worry about trying to find a spot in the tiny lot, just park along the road and make your way down to the trail that circles the lake.

We found a very secluded spot right at the water’s edge to have a private picnic lunch. I was tempted to go back to the car for my swimsuit, but after wading in up to my knees, I realized that swimming in a glacier fed lake wouldn’t last too long. It was frigid! By the way, this was the second weekend in a row that I have played in the snow on dormant volcanoes. Have I mentioned I love the Pacific Northwest?

After lunch, we hiked to the south end of the lake where most of the crowd was. There are about 30 camping sites, but it’s really just a big rock field where you can pitch a tent. If you were doing a lot of hiking in the area, it might be worth it, but otherwise I think we’ll skip that campground.

Normally you’d see majestic Mt. Rainier just over the hills but there were too many clouds to give us a good view. You can check out the photos in the photo gallery or view the panoramic shot by clicking the image below (~17MB.)

We finished the day with dinner at Matts’ Rotisserie and Oyster Lounge in Redmond Town Center. (Minus eleventy billion points for auto playing background music when you open their site.)

Thanks to Tyla for yet another wonderful adventure. The last year has been full of them and I can’t wait to see what lies ahead!