My wife and I managed to get away for a weekend just before our dog Bailey had major surgery (see below), and it was wonderful. A simple overnight at Lake Boardman, a very pretty Alpine lake in the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest about 30 miles from Granite Falls, WA. That was, until the worst campers in the world (that would be Suzette and I) decided we wanted to visit Island Lake. On the map it's just a short .8 miles from Lake Boardman, and all you have to do is follow an outlet stream.
It turns out that Lake Boardman is ringing by dense forest and steep and slippery granite slabs that plunge 90-degrees, straight down into the lake. But not before slicing you ankle to knee on their knife-blade craigs on the way down. There is no easy way to Island Lake from there.
Gotta love nature.
After half an hour of Lewis-and-Clark-meets-Laurel-and-Hardy-tramping-through-the-woods, we found a beautiful clearing at the base of an old rock slide and made camp.
I tell you, those hours spent climbing around and over the scree, watching the hawks dive for fish, were just the thing I needed. We all know it: There's something very special about being away from everything. The farther away we get, the more profound the experience.
And we managed to find BarcaRock, the most comfortable rock in the world.