|Selfie from June Lake|
From I-5/Woodland, take the Lewis River Road (WA-503) eastbound to Cougar. Continue past on NF-90 to NF-83 (Ape Caves, Ape Canyon, Lava Canyon, etc).
I was out there for my mentor session with an experience MSHI volunteer and two other mentees. We met at a road pullout, then, because of the rain, we stopped at Ape Caves. While one mentee, Evan, was getting instructions on using the radio and other stuff we covered last weekend at SLC, Katie and I introduced ourselves to the Ape Caves staff.
We went to the lava tube opening and chatted with a few visitors and got some orientation on the area. Katie and I ventured into the tube for a little bit but just to where the trail splits.
When the rain stopped, the four of us drove up to the Marble Mountain Trailhead in order to head up to June Lake.
Elevation Gain: 545 ft
Today I had my mentor session on the south side of Mt St Helens. I met a seasoned MSHI volunteer and two other mentees near Cougar, WA. It was raining this morning so we stopped at Ape Caves to interact with some visitors and take at peek at the lava tube.
When the rain stopped, we drove up NF-83 to the Marble Mountain Sno-Park, where road is still closed. We took the Pine Marten Trail for a while then out on the road. We stopped to chat with two people visiting from Chicago, then continued to the June Lake Trailhead and up to the lake for lunch. We talked with two more people that were from the East coast.
On our way back we met a guy who had a wealth of knowledge and a lifetime experience in the area. You never know who you'll encounter. We chatted for 15 minutes. We passed a couple with a dog and just said hello. Some interactions are brief while others develop into an interesting dialogue.
It was good practice engaging visitors and using the radio. I'm feeling ready to go out there on my own or co-rove with another volunteer.
From the Trailhead parking lot, we followed the Pine Marten trail, while parallels NF-83. We popped out onto the road when we saw a couple of visitors from Chicago. We chatted with them for a bit about their plans and where they could see MSH.
We continued along the road to the June Lake Trailhead. We meandered up the trail, chatting with each other, discussing flowers and the ancient lahar flow next to the trail.
We stopped at the lake to eat lunch but the rain came back. We hiked into the trees for shelter and examined the foliage. When the rain stopped again, we went back to the lake and met two more visitors. We chatted for a bit and they took a group photo for us. Before we left the lake, we popped over to the lahar flow to look at the boulders.
We walked back to Marble Mountain Sno-Park. A car and an RV past us on the road that was supposed to be closed. The car came back pretty soon because the road was blocked by snow.
When we got back to the gate, we called Columbia Dispatch to report the open gate. While waiting two more cars full of people looked like they wanted to go through. We closed the gate but didn't lock it. The RV came back through.
We drove back to where we met in the morning to check out on the radio. We caravaned back to Amboy to the MSHI HQ to return the radio.