The Enchantments

The Enchantments

Yikes I just realized that I left y’all hanging with a very low blog post! I have been extremely busy this week that’s why I haven’t updated yet, but no worries, all is well.

I have come to get used to the highs and lows of recovery. The highs are VERY high and the lows are very low. But there is a lot of in between spots now that feel good, normal, and ok.

On Tuesday we took the day off work to hike my bucket list hike in Washington. It’s called Colchuck Lake and it’s a gateway into the Enchantments. I am not quite skilled enough to have kept pushing on to Aasgard Pass, but after a few years of conditioning maybe! Colchuck itself was difficult. We were up at 4 AM to head out for the 3.5 hour drive to the trail head and had some slow downs.

The drive to the Eastern side of the state is beautiful. You drive over mountain passes, passing waterfalls, glacier lakes, cliffs, and trees…all the trees. When you get on the other side of the passes there is a more open, wide, terrain. More desert land and much warmer (and a more dry heat as opposed to humid.) The landscape primarily consists of Orchards, Vineyards and farms. The Wenatchee River and several other creeks wind their way through the trees and farms and you get glimpses of white water as you pass over bridges. This is just the drive…imagine the hikes on that side of the state!

When  you finally reach the Forest Service road that leads to the trail head you have to drive for another 20 minutes over pot holes and a dusty, unpaved road. ALAS, you reach the signs for Stuart Lake Trail (this is where you start your hike to Colchuck. It eventually branches off.)

The first mile is generous to you. It’s a gradual incline with plenty of coverage by the trees (thankfully as it was 85 degrees the day we hiked!) There are several creek crossings along the way and there is a lot of sightings of mountain goats and deer (we were not lucky enough to spot any though). Just at the halfway mark it instantly get’s tougher. The incline is rough, the trail is rocky, at points requiring you to rock scramble, and the trees start to thin, leaving you completely exposed to the beating sun at some parts. The only reprieve is the creek crossings because you finally get a blast of cold air and water. As a person who suffers from asthma, this hike was difficult for me, but doable. Trekking poles helped me greatly.

The view at the top was worth the grind. It’s stunning. It’s been described as a religious experience. With the prospect of a cabin waiting for us just down the road from the trail head, we didn’t stay up long. We ate our lunch, took some photos and started the treacherous hike down. By the end of the 2 hour descent we were beyond ready to be in the wood fired hot tub with food in our bellies!

We got to our little cabin and set up camp and just vegged out on steaks and veggies and played our favorite card game (Skip-Bo). You better believe we slept like angel babies that night!

The next morning after a delicious breakfast cooked over the fire we headed to Leavenworth. A little Bavarian village nestled between peaks alongside the river. We did some window shopping, cheese tasting, and ate our lunch with our toes in the water of the river. We listened to live music in the park and then headed back home.

It was a PERFECT way to unwind from the stresses of life. Sometimes you just gotta get outdoors and rough it. My calves are killing me, I have blisters and mosquito bites and burnt shoulders but I feel rejuvenated and ready to tackle life again.

Here are some highlights from the hike and our cabin!

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