Harbor Mountain to Gavan Hill

Harbor Gavan Shelter View

My brother and I hiked Harbor Mountain to Gavan Hill today. The weather was decent. It was sunny on the drive up, though that did not really last on the trail. There was no rain and the clouds were mostly up above us, though occasionally we were in them. If anything, the wildflowers were even more abundant along the south slopes of Harbor Mountain then they were 4 weeks ago. Certainly the number of different species in profuse bloom was greater. The mud condtions were pretty good for looking at tracks, and we saw lots of ptarmigan tracks along the trail. My brother also followed a bear trail through the grasses some distance. It appeared to him that a sow and 1 or 2 cubs had crossed the trail and headed down into the Cascade Creek drainage between Harbor Mountain and Gavan Hill.

Trail conditions overall were pretty good. There is no snow on the trail at any point. Someone has put nylon netting on the boardwalks heading up into the bowl on Harbor Mountain. It certainly makes the boards less slippery, but I am guessing it won’t be very durable. Along the ridge between the top of the bowl and Harbor Mountain Ridge trail, there were some very muddy spots. As the trail goes along the south facing slopes of Harbor Mountain, there are sections where the Sitka Alders are growing out into the trail. This is causing people to walk at the opposite edge and widen the trail on the downhill side (where there isn’t much room to widen it). It could probably stand to be brushed out a bit. On the Gavan Hill side, it appeared that someone has trimmed the brush from along side the trail most of the way up. The mud terraces along the trail below the Cross Trail intersection are still in place, and the muddy patches continue to get wider as people seek to avoid the deep mud where the water is backed up.

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