It was quite cold and windy all night and it was hard to sleep, but the wait for breakfast was worth it. And most of the days hiking was quite exceptional with lots of good views of Mt Hood as we circled around it. It may not have been a big mile day, but it was a full day. And Kevin says you knuckleheads at Tipples better not be running the course backwards tonight.
We had planned on getting up at 6:30 so we could be packed and ready to roll before the breakfast opened at 7:30. So I start rolling around exactly at 6:30 and I find Kevin is already packed up and ready to go. He got up at 6:00 and was ready to roll. I got ready as quickly as I could and we wandered down to the lodge to charge phones and get some coffee.
We got to the dining room line just as they opened and got seated near a window. The valleys all around us were rolling with clouds in an undercast day. The buffet once again did not disappoint. I did not have any pastries last time, but did on this visit and they were quite exceptional. We had our fill and got back to the campsite to get our packs and get rolling. We set off at about 8:45 waddling down the trail with full stomachs.
The trail circled the mid base of Mt Hood to the west. We weaved in and out of gullies and canyons sometimes with bare rock and sometimes in thick pines. It seemed like every twenty minutes there was another spectacular view of something. Every time we thought we had left.Mt Hood we would somehow get another view of it. It will probably take a week to get away from this thing.
We took the alternate trail to Ramona falls since it was close by and were not disappointed. It was a very tall waterfall and cascaded all over the place. We took an extended break there to eat and take in the view. It was quite crowded with lots of day hikers from a nearby trailhead.
We found a campsite at a road crossing that actually had a picnic table so that was a good enough reason to stop. We talked with two other hikers also camping there and cooked dinner on the picnic table. This area had rain last night so everything is wet. Having a nice picnic tabke is a nice convenience. Taking a week off has gotten me hooked on furniture again. I need to kick the habit.