Sunday, July 31, 2016

Hosmer Lake, Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway, Oregon

Only paddles and fish jumping break the water's surface at Hosmer Lake. I arrived early with the fly fishermen and a few other paddlers. The air was cool and still.
 You can see three prominent Cascades mountains from various points on the lake. On the left in this picture is one of the Three Sisters, and on the right is Broken Top Mt.
 Do you see the ducks?
 It's a female Ring-necked duck and ducklings.
 This seems to be the time of year for ducklings here in the mountain lakes.
 And there are other pretties too.
Hosmer Lake is just one of many lakes found along the Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway. I am camping here, so started with this one.
 This Red-winged Blackbird was taking a bath among the reeds.

 A Ring-necked duckling.
 And a downy baby Pied-billed Grebe.
The water is clear and cold, and the lake has many fingers and tributaries to explore.
This lake was created when a lava flow dammed up the stream. You can see the mounds of lava on the bank here.
 God's flower arrangement. The pink is Fireweed; I don't know what the yellow is.
 Another family of Ring-necked Ducks.

 More lava formations.
 Sleepy ducklings...
 A mama Pied-billed Grebes and her offspring.

 You can paddle or drift your way from the boat launch through a passageway of reeds to the larger end of the lake.
 More Grebes.
 Some people paddle out here and camp in tents around the lake. Do you see the tent?
 Entering the larger end of the lake.
 A flock of Swallows are buzzing the water here.

 I don't know which kind of swallow they are.
 Probably Tree Swallows
 A view of Bachelor Mt. There's a ski resort up there. 
 I think this is a Yellow Warbler showing off it's catch.
 Nice bug!
 This man is fly-fishing from his canoe. Only fly-fishing is allowed, and only catch and release.
 Spotted Sandpiper
 Another view of Mt. Bachelor.
 I believe this is a female Bufflehead and her ducklings.

 The water is shallow here as I approach a stream that I am looking for.
 A view of Broken Top Mt., a tall, conical stratovolcano. Volcanoes and glaciers together formed the dozens of lakes in this area, many created in basins scoured by ice and blocked by lava dams.
 Broken Top Mt. on the left and Mt. Bachelor on the right in this picture.
 Here is the stream I've been looking for. I was told that if you paddle upstream far enough, you come to a waterfall. Want to try it?
 It starts out pretty shallow, and I thought I might run aground, but it gets deeper as you go.
 This is where the Great Blue Heron has been hiding.
 It's pretty easy paddling against the current at first.
 Then you come to some obstacles like downed trees that you have to paddle around, and the water becomes a little swifter. Onward we go!
 When you come in sight of the waterfall there is a place to put ashore and walk a short trail the rest of the way.
 Waterfall pictures:

 There's a bridge above the waterfall that I learned is part of a horse trail.
 Looking downstream from the top of the falls.
 There's a clump of grass in the middle, caught on a log.
 Wildflowers have taken root there.
 This is the landing. More people are coming.
 What a nice float back downstream!
 Back to the lake.
 These tracks in the shallow area may be elk or other animals crossing to one of the islands.
 Mt. Bachelor
 As I make my way back to the boat launch I meet more and more canoes, kayaks, and stand-up paddle boarders. I was here all morning. The sun is getting warm...they can have the afternoon.