Cook & Green Pass to Towhead Lake 11-3-21

Photos by Francie

First of all, I would like to give a big shout out to my road crew of Barry, Nanci and Michael. They were amazing. On the drive to the trail head, we encountered many downed tree limbs, some logs and small rock slides. Each time we came to one, the three of them jumped out of the car to clear the way or to hold back the branches as I drove through. This is the worst condition any of us have seen this road in and it made our drive time an extra 20 minutes totaling 2 hours 7 minutes.

We made the decision that if the wind were to pick up and have high gusts, we would turn back and head to the car so we could drive back out without any more clean up. As it turns out, we had excellent weather. It was a little chilly to begin with, but since the trail starts upwards, we soon warmed ourselves.

The clouds were low so we had a stunning view of Mount Shasta (as so many of our hikes do) and tried to determine if what we saw northwest of the mountain was a prescribed burn or not. We were also able to look back and see where the car was parked at the trailhead.

We had multiple places along the trail where water was flowing near or over it. We could see the Red Buttes early as the area that burned no longer blocks the view. There were 15 or so burned/downed trees that we climbed over, under or around. The view of Echo Lake was beautiful and had more water than I have seen in years. We then continued on and came to see Lily Pad Lake and decided to wait until the green gate before we stopped for a snack.

Then we headed down towards Towhead Lake. There is a small unnamed body of water that we are normally able to walk along the left side of that had enough water that we could not go that direction. We went to the right of it to our lunch spot. I continued climbing over the big rocks so I could get some views of Towhead and then returned to eat my lunch. Barry and Nanci decided to check it out after they had eaten. Not being a rookie, I had to tease Barry that I remembered to bring dark chocolate for everyone.

We returned back to the trailhead and drove out only needing to remove one branch.  We skipped beer and fries since it was almost 5:30pm when we got back to Ashland

Francie

Ashland Hiking Home

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