Chilliwack and the eastern Fraser Valley communities of Agassiz, Harrison Hot Springs and Hope are close to some of the most breath taking scenery in the world. I suppose this is one of the many advantages of living out here.
This weekend, I took a return visit to one of my favourite hikes up the Coquilhalla Highway to The Needle and the Flatiron. With me were 4 hiking buddies and a family of 4 from German (all adults) out to enjoy a piece of Canadian wilderness.
The trail through the trees is quite steep and very soon your heart is pounding, your lungs heaving and your legs complaining. This is a difficult hike with an elevation gain of 882m, a round trip takes 6 to 8 hours. Do not undertake this strenuous trek without water, good hiking boots, poles and some provisions for the day. The winds can blow at the top so be prepared to don a sweater or vest while you enjoy a break. Equipment aside - you need to be in decent shape.
The west coast forest is beautiful and the blueberries and huckleberries offer us a forest treat. After about an hour the traffic noises of the highway disappear and silence with the odd bird call remains.
Climbing upward through the forest brings you into a lovely mountain meadow with some fantastic. views. I like to imagine as I traverse the giant granite plates - that I am walking along the spine of the mountain.
To the right is The Needle and we can see people already at the peak. I give a wave, but we are too far away to be noticed.
To the left I see the The Flatiron, it is here that our group is heading, but I am hoping to focus my photographic attention on a small glacier feed alpine lake to one side of the Flatiron.
I become entranced by the many splendid natural art sculptures time & weather have created with bleached wood. It seems as if they have been placed here expressly for our viewing.
The waters of the alpine lake above spill onto a large flat granite plate - I think "it is here that rivers are born".
The alpine lake is as pretty as I remember, clear, cold, pristine.
The Needle is reflected back in this lake in a number of images I take that day.