Timberline Lodge, our starting point.
We kind of missed the cutoff at first, so we angled over to the Timberline Trail via the Mountaineer Trail.
Entering the Mount Hood Wilderness.
Little Zigzag Canyon
Old PCT sign
The trail wiggled in and out of small canyons for the first few miles.
A gaggle of dayhikers enjoying the viewpoint into Zigzag Canyon
Back into the shade. It was getting warm out so I appreciated the breaks from the sun.
Climbing out of Zigzag Canyon towards Paradise Park
First snow encounter of the hike! Just below Paradise Park
Entering Paradise Park we were greeted with a wildflower explosion!
I've heard these called "Hippy Flowers" but apparently they are anemones called "Old Man of the Mountain"
Wildflowers as far as the eye can see.
Paradise Park Wildflowers
More Paradise Park wildflowers
Meadow Sweet (I think?)
Lost Creek, Paradise Park
Reaching the junction with the Timberline Trail again. The side trip through Paradise Park was worth the extra effort.
The descent to the Sandy River is loooong but there are some nice places to step off the trail and take in amazing views.
Hidden down in that canyon is Paradise Branch falls, one of the largest drop falls in Oregon.
Mt Hood, Sandy River Canyon, and Paradise Branch Falls
Sandy River far below. Looks tiny but we'll have to figure out where to cross it in the morning.
Settled into our Night 1 camp at the junction of Rushing Water Creek and Sandy River
Night 1 dinner. SO GOOD.
Looking up the Sandy River to Mt Hood on the morning of Day 2.
Sandy River Crossing. You can see how much higher it gets in the afternoon based on the water line on the banks.
Ramona Falls bridge
Yep, time to start climbing again.
False bugbane (best ID?)
I was calling them fireworks flowers
First Muddy Fork crossing.
My recommendation after all of the crossings of the Timberline trail: just wade them all (except Elliott). At least during the conditions we encountered. Make your best judgement.
A few minutes later - the water went from partially transparent to completely chocolate milk opaque.
Chocolate milk or wild river?
Climbing out of the Muddy Fork
Some much-needed shade as we climb towards Bald Mountain.
Climbing towards McNeil point, we were swarmed by black flies and the heat was intensifying. The occasional view of the mountain was a welcome break from the trudge.
Far, far below us to the right is the Muddy Fork that we had crossed earlier.