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Mt St Helens Area - Loowit Trail

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Cascades & Coast II Alpengirls - Crushed It!

Wed, 07/12/2023 - 04:08

Cascades Alpengirls BackpackerHello from the Columbia River Gorge! We just got back from four days of backpacking in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest, where we covered 18-20 miles on our route. These girls crushed these miles, and covered over five washes on Mt. Saint Helens! 

First day we hiked to our butte dome campsite from the trailhead at the pass and set up camp in a beautiful meadow where Harriet and Anneliese helped create a “pumped up” mac and cheese with peas and garbanzo beans - yum! We all were tired from the day, and headed to bed early. 

After a breakfast of tropical oatmeal, we headed up to the Loowit Trail and were out above the trees with big views in the distance, and these girls cleared five washes, one of which has a rope where we “rappelled down.” Clare and Willow charged ahead together and were the first to go down the wash on the rope rappel. This second day was the hardest, and we completed seven miles with lots of ups and downs. Merrin helped push the group on this technical day with a grounded positivity and “go get it” attitude! We ended the day in the canyon again in the trees, where Laurel, Mattea and Willow made the tastiest ramen dinner. 

The third day we had an early morning stretch circle, and our leader of the day Tillie was fun, fast and efficient with getting the girls on the trail and heading to the mountain lake campsite. We reached the lake in the early afternoon and set up camp. We had enough time to work on skills beads. Valeska worked on her cooking bead by setting up the pocket rockets and making sure everyone was safe when cooking pasta.  Mattea showed off her wilderness first aid skills by learning how to splint an arm! 

Today we had an early morning wake up and all the girls were excited to get back to the van!  We made it to the trailhead by 11:35 and had a delicious lunch of pizza bagels and now we’re excited to get a shower in before rafting and kayaking and final awards and pizza party to close out a stellar trip with a great group of Alpengirls!