So two weekends ago, Tom and I set off to go hiking. We had our lunches packed, extra warm clothes and rain coats, our “ten essentials”. Apparently, the thing we didn’t pack, was our brains.
We decided to hike to Lake Lillian, which is on the I-90 corridor just on the east side of Snoqualmie pass, to see the beautiful, colorful leaves. We drove to the parking lot signed for the trail, got out of the car, and started hiking down the established trail that lead from the parking lot. This was our mistake. We did not READ THE SIGN at the entrance to the parking lot which notes that the trail head was 100 yards up the road. DOH!
We instead hiked up the trail from the parking lot through the woods. It was a nice trail, if not a little under maintained, we thought. I started get more and more uneasy as the trail got harder and harder to follow. Soon we were following spray painted orange blazes which we later “determined” must be a new trail that someone is working on cutting. We finally stopped at scree field and decided that we were not in the right place. Luckily, wherever we were was pretty, so we sat down and had lunch and took some pictures. Tom tried to track down the pika that was meeping at us, but it ran away before he could get super close.
Things got slightly more interesting on the way down, as we got turned around several times trying to follow the “trail” that we had basically invented on the way up. After consulting the GPS and the less than stellar topo we had, we figured out where we needed to go, and soon joined up with the more established trail, (we think it’s a hunter’s trail…whoo hoo).
In the end, we didn’t have a true epic, but we defiantly felt like idiots for not reading the sign showing the true location. Luckily we had a GPS, and map to help us out, but we defiantly learned our lesson not to take any trail for granted, and that even experienced hikers make mistakes. Fortunately for us, this mistake didn’t cost us much more than a few hours in a pretty forest.