mmegaera: (Much Ado in Montana)
[personal profile] mmegaera

I always wake up at the crack of dawn when I’m camping. Especially this time of year when it gets light before six in the morning. But that’s okay.

I’m not sure why (am I ever sure why?) I decided to drive up to Lake Chelan this morning, but I never really have before. I stopped in the touristy town of Chelan, at the foot of the lake, to buy batteries for my camera and to stick my head in a quilt shop on the main drag. Whoever their fabric buyer is, her taste does not agree with mine. I’m not a big fan of what I think of as sixties neon, and that was about all that little shop held.

There is no road clear around Lake Chelan. It’s a landlocked fjord, and the upper end of the lake reaches deep into the North Cascades. There are two roads on either side. The one on the north shore of the lake is only about twenty miles long. The one on the south side is about twice that length, so that’s the one I took.

Lake Chelan is the third deepest lake in North America at over 1500 feet deep (the bottom is lower than sea level), according to a sign I read at the ferry landing. It’s roughly 55 miles long, and varies from one to two miles wide. It’s also pretty darned gorgeous. I stopped at the Fields Point Landing, a few miles up the lake, to poke around the visitor center and ask about the ferry that runs daily to Stehekin, the tiny settlement at the head of the lake. One of these days I want to take that trip, but the boat had left an hour or so earlier. Next time.

But I saw beautiful views, anyway, and more flowers.

The view across Lake Chelan from Field’s Landing. I don’t know if that’s a permanent snowcap or if it’s just because it’s only May.
A view of the ferry landing and down the lake.
Along the path looking northward along the lake. The yellow flowers are more balsamroot.
Prairie Star Flower. I saw these for the first time down in Oregon on my Long Trip last summer. This was the only shot I got of them this trip where the blossoms weren’t blurred by the breeze.

I’d thought about camping at 25 Mile Creek State Park at the end of the road that night, but it wasn’t even noon yet, and I decided I wanted to actually go on up to the Okanogan. So, stopping along the way to make a picnic lunch, I headed up to the town of Omak, where one of my favorite quilt shops (Needlyn Time) is. And, yes, this time I bought fabric, which I needed like a hole in the head, but tough.

After that, I headed up to Conconully, the little town that inspired the ghost town of the same name in my Unearthly Northwest books.

The view from the highway going up to Conconully from Omak. Please excuse the bug blurs — I had to take this through the windshield because there really wasn’t a good place where I could get out of the van.
This is what I meant by more balsamroot than I’ve ever seen on one trip before. Whole *hillsides* of the stuff.

Conconully is one of the few towns I know of with a state park right at the edge of town. But it’s a nice state park, and the campsite I wound up at was right on the lake and pretty secluded. I spent what was left of the afternoon just enjoying the day and reading, and listening to the red-winged blackbirds sawing their courtship cries. Oh, and watching the geese and ducks use the lake as a landing and launch pad. And the deer eating the campground’s mowed grass.

One of the red-winged blackbirds who sawed his mating call all afternoon at Lake Conconully.
One of the deer who wandered through the campground in the afternoon.
The view from my campsite at Conconully State Park.
My campsite at Conconully State Park.
Sunset from my campsite.

All in all, I drove a bit more than I had intended, but it was well worth it.

Mirrored from M.M. Justus -- adventures in the supernatural Old West.

Date: 2017-05-07 09:00 pm (UTC)
thnidu: A shield-shaped hunk of watermelon rind, with bits carved away to make 2 staring eyes and a mouth. By bensanaz (melonhead)
From: [personal profile] thnidu
These are beautiful! Thank you, from a city-dweller who rarely gets to see such views.

One correction, though: There's no such thing as a landlocked fjord. The Oxford Dictionary online defines "fjord" as

A long, narrow, deep inlet of the sea between high cliffs, as in Norway, typically formed by submergence of a glaciated valley.

I don't know what word you might have been looking for or I'd suggest a possibility.

Date: 2017-05-08 02:15 am (UTC)
archangelbeth: An anthropomorphic feline face, with feathered wing ears, and glasses, in shades of gray. (Default)
From: [personal profile] archangelbeth
That deer is fluffy! Weird. All the local deer here are pretty sleek.

Date: 2017-05-09 03:21 am (UTC)
archangelbeth: An anthropomorphic feline face, with feathered wing ears, and glasses, in shades of gray. (Default)
From: [personal profile] archangelbeth
Deer Shearing Time. >_>

Date: 2017-05-10 01:48 am (UTC)
archangelbeth: An anthropomorphic feline face, with feathered wing ears, and glasses, in shades of gray. (Default)
From: [personal profile] archangelbeth
Good gracious! ...is Bison fur spinnable, I wonder?

Date: 2017-05-11 01:33 am (UTC)
archangelbeth: An anthropomorphic feline face, with feathered wing ears, and glasses, in shades of gray. (Default)
From: [personal profile] archangelbeth
Put up giant velcro brushes for them to scratch themselves on, then pick the fur out when they move on!

Date: 2017-05-12 02:55 am (UTC)
archangelbeth: An anthropomorphic feline face, with feathered wing ears, and glasses, in shades of gray. (Default)
From: [personal profile] archangelbeth
Ah, but I can't spin wool. Have to get spinners for that. I only crochet stuff. *nods firmly*

Date: 2017-05-13 05:45 am (UTC)
archangelbeth: An anthropomorphic feline face, with feathered wing ears, and glasses, in shades of gray. (Default)
From: [personal profile] archangelbeth
Clearly the parkland people should find a way to harvest the fur and sell it to spinners for Big Bucks. *nod*

Date: 2017-05-14 01:20 am (UTC)
archangelbeth: Bleach's vice-captain Nanao, adjusting her glasses. Captioned: Oh Dear (Oh Dear)
From: [personal profile] archangelbeth
Uuuugh, good luck! STAY HYDRATED.

Date: 2017-05-15 02:59 am (UTC)
archangelbeth: An anthropomorphic feline face, with feathered wing ears, and glasses, in shades of gray. (Default)
From: [personal profile] archangelbeth
Yay for better, and here's hoping the Tired passes soon...

Date: 2017-05-09 10:51 am (UTC)
xinef: (Default)
From: [personal profile] xinef
Love the pictures. Pretty lake! I was curious about other deep lakes in North America, so googled.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_lakes_by_depth
According to that list, Lake Chelan is 3rd deepest in the US, but 7th in North America.
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