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The Enchantments is among the premier backpacking destinations in the Pacific Northwest, and is especially wonderful in autumn, when Alpine Larches are golden. This is part one of an account of a week-long hike into this high country of Mountain Goats, wilderness lakes, and granite peaks.

After a wonderfully dry summer, Seattle and the Cascade Mountains have entered autumn. When I heard a report that snow was falling at Snoqualmie Pass, I organized a hike to Gold Creek Pond to try and photograph snow and autumn leaves; seeing Kokanee Salmon in Gold Creek was a bonus.

Backpacking into Royal Basin in Olympic National Park is a wondrous experience, in a place where massive geological forces have been at work for millions of years. Olympic Marmots and wildflowers add activity and delicate beauty to the hike.

Hiking to the Gobblers Knob Fire Lookout, which stands near Mount Rainier. The lookout has a wonderful history and one of the most spectacular views in the USA; the approach trail skirted two subalpine lakes and was filled with wildflowers.

The Eagle Creek Trail in Oregon’s Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area leads to Punchbowl Falls, among the most beautiful waterfalls in North America. This post is a brief description of the trail.

Camping and hiking on Santa Cruz Island, part of Channel Islands National Park, gives people a chance to see the tiny Island Fox, view the Island Scrub-Jay (found nowhere else on earth), and camp on land that was part of a ranch for over a hundred years. The headlands overlooking the Pacific Ocean give a magnificent view toward the California coastline.