Whistle Lake Goodness

Saturday I ventured north to check out the Whistle Lake area of the Anacortes Community Forest Lands.  I had been to the Cranberry Lake area the week before and I was ready to check out some more of the goods in Anacortes.

Man there was some fun single track out by Whistle Lake but there are no freebies.  You have got to earn them.   The good news is what goes up must come down.    The number of trails in this area is simply bewildering and it is hard to go more than a third of mile without having a trail junctions to think about.

While on one of the trails near the top of “Sugar Cube”  I had an incredible critter encounter.    As I rounded a corner a bald eagle flew up from the trail where it had recently whacked some small furry critter and had it for lunch.   It flew up into a nearby tree and started checking me out. 

While it looked concerned with me a first, it soon seemed to figure out that I meant it no harm and seemed rather comfortable with my presence.   Over the next five minutes I would go through a series of snapping pictures and moving a little closer until it decided it had better things to do.    

This eagle is bigger than it looks.  I’m guessing that those talons if out stretched would be about the size of an average man’s hand.  Simply impressive.

An hour or so later in the ride I would once again have another cool critter encounter.  This time it was with a spotted owl and the sequence of events was similar to that the eagle. 

I love checking out the “Back 40” wherever I go.  On this day that looked to be the south side of the lake.  The trails over here were much steeper and trickier with more roots and rocky sections.

It would be a really big feat to ride all of the stuff in a single day as it takes multiple loops of climbing to the top of several hills that can work the legs over really well. 

I did as many climbs up the hills as I could stand and still did not get to all of the trails.  I finished the day with my legs thoroughly shot and a big smile on my face.