We had a great group of eight hikers, but not great weather for this hike around Morte Lake. The day started with overcast and worked up to drizzle and rain.
We used some route variations to make this loop around Morte Lake, rather than the official maintained trail. We started on George’s flagged route which leaves directly from the parking lot and climbs steeply up to the ridge south of the creek flowing from Little Morte Lake. Everyone helped to find the next flag and we stayed on course. The mossy bluffs and death camas were lovely, but the views were quite limited by the weather. From the ridge summit we joined the under-construction mountain bike trails that lead along the ridge, down to a saddle and up again to the Dead Fish mountain bike trail. We continued on mountain bike trails down to the official maintained trail and then followed the trail clockwise around Morte Lake. We stopped for lunch at the southwest lake viewpoint and admired the sandy beaches along the way. After Little Lake we crossed the creek and re-joined the mountain bike trail, through an open forest with good views of the creek. There were newts and oyster mushroom along the way. About 11.5 km, a bit more than 4 hours.
(click on photos to view larger)
Some of the posted photos were taken on a sunnier day earlier in May.