Friday, July 26, 2013

Day Trip to Artist Point

Will and I took our visiting friend from New York up to the end of Highway 542 in the North Cascades of Whatcom County. The road ends at Artist Point a high pass between the Nooksack drainage on the north and the Baker River drainage on the south. The road end is located between Mount Shuksan to the east and Mount Baker on the west. And there are other great peak views in the distance. We took a short hike out to Coleman Pinnacle enjoying sun and a light breeze that kept the flies in check. 

Mount Shuksan
Shuksan is a 9,000-foot plus summit of metamorphic rock that is part of the Northwest Cascades 

Summit of Mount Baker - the latest version of a volcanic center in this part of the North Cascades is a 10,000-foot strato volcano 

In between the summits of Baker and Shuksan is the remnants of a very violent eruptive center exposed in the incised headwaters of Swift Creek which drains towards Baker Lake in the distance

To get a grasp of the scale and intensity of that event it would be useful to take a field trip with the guy in the red vest:

Dave Tucker happened to be leading a field right where we began our hike

 Driving back down the mountain slopes we stopped to admire the columnar jointing.

Between Kendal and Deming the Racehorse Creek landslide was lit in a manner that stood out well.

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