On Memorial Day, May 27th, son Edward and I decided to go hiking. We had a fund-raising breakfast in the morning so could not go far and decided that we would hike in the Chuckanut Mountains south of Bellingham. We decided to start out on the Fragrance Lake Trail, a trail that my wife and I hike earlier this spring, and thought we would hike beyond to the top of and along Chuckanut Ridge.
The day was overcast and threatening rain but the hike up to Fragrance Lake was relatively dry. We found some Coralroots, both Western Spotted and Striped along the trail, though the latter were nearly finished and took the time to photograph them and stopped to take a few photos at the end of a side trail to an overlook as well. The San Juan Islands were visible but only just.
We found only a few other items of interest, among them a centipede that emitted a sweet odor when touched and that we later identified as the Cyanide Millipede which actually emits cyanide to deter predators. It was hard to photograph on the dark trail since it never stopped moving except when curled up. Along with it we photographed some mushrooms and fungi.
By the time we reached the lake it was starting to rain and though we hiked around the lake and up beyond it, we soon gave up since the day was so miserable. Even the day my wife and I hiked the trail it was not as wet as this Memorial Day. My wife and I had hiked in a misty drizzle but this was real rain and we were back at the car by noon and headed for one more stop and home.
The other stop was a shale cliff that Edward had visited with a geology class. There are in the cliff huge fossils of fern fronds, what appears to be whole tree trunk turned to coal and numerous fossils of the leaves from deciduous trees. We took photographs which turned out much better than I expected, admired the fossils and headed for a coffee shop to warm up and for home.