A Northwest Classic

16 Sep

Hike: Ira Spring Trail
By Alene


The Ira Spring Trail was created less than 10 years ago as a tribute to a man who “guided” many of us on trails through his writings and books. The trail created a more scenic and saner way to get to Mason Lake in the Alpine Lakes Wilderness.

I call this hike classic because it has all my favorite elements: good trail, views on many turns, wildflowers, varying terrain, and a cool lake destination.

After complaining for many months about hiking in the rain or fog, today we had to worry about extreme heat. We left Seattle a little after 5:30 am to avoid scorching sun and crowds and were rewarded with shade and cool breezes the entire hike. We also had the trail to ourselves on the way in except for a few backpackers returning from an overnight stay.

The trail opened up in a number of places for views of Mt Rainier as well as meadows of wildflowers and hillsides of boulders.

Mt Rainier from the trail

Orange paintbrush and purple fireweed

Crossing the rocky terrain


The trail climbs steadily but gains enough elevation to get some bigger vistas of Mt Rainier and the “lesser” peaks around it.

Mt Rainier from the top of the trail

After reaching the high spot with the Rainier view, the trail descends steeply to Mason Lake. We took a quick break here for snacks and water and the headed back down the trail to get out before the heat of the day. We got back to our car as most hikers were putting on their boots. It was before noon; our hike was complete, and we could now head home for the next activity on a day with abnormally high temperature – a pitcher of ice tea and an afternoon siesta.

One Response to “A Northwest Classic”

  1. marla {Family Fresh Cooking} September 17, 2010 at 5:49 pm #

    This hike looks gorgeous! The views of Mt. Rainier are so cool. It is always fun to hike on those trails filled with scree. xo

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: