On September 25, we set out from an empty village on Schweitzer Mountain and made our way to the top for the Quad. The Nature Trail was compromised by construction and no signs have been placed for hikers. While it is difficult to get lost, the trail is simply not in good shape. I am hopeful Schweitzer will remedy this by next season as the views at the top are hard to beat. Once we reached the 6,400’ top of Schweitzer Mountain we headed directly north across the ridge before dropping 350’ to the end of Schweitzer’s lift operations. This 350’ is no fun coming back but you have to factor it in to return to the top of Schweitzer Mountain. Cathy Schuller and I left the village before Noon and spent about five leisurely hours hiking up through still laden huckleberry bushes. Blue Mountain is easily visible from the top as you head northwest and eventually pick up a faint single track that takes you to the top of the peak. The views along the crest are pleasant though not spectacular. We did the round trip (approximately 8 miles) in about five hours. The elevation gain is about 2,400’ total. The final 300-400’ up the slopes of Blue are through the bear grass. This is bear country and we saw plenty of evidence so be aware of your surroundings.
Photo #1 Cathy Schuller on the bottom part of the trail
Photo #2 Views looking north on the Selkirk Crest from the top