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Dog Friendly Hiking at Mount Baker

For weeks, as we traveled around the Olympic Peninsula and then hopped a ferry to Victoria, we caught glimpses of Mount Baker. When we got back to Washington, we decided to take a closer look. It was going to be a warm day in Bellingham, and we looked forward to the 30 mile drive to the cool, snowiness we’d been admiring from afar. Little did we know …

Mount Baker, WA Mount Baker, WA

Imagine our surprise when we got to the trail head and the thermometer read 85 degrees! Who would have expected that shorts and snow shoes would be appropriate attire for a September hike? Unfortunately for us, we didn’t have the snow shoes – we really could have used them.

Mount Baker, WA Mount Baker, WA

The road was only cleared to the parking lot – from there snow covering the road was still more than 10 feet deep in some places. Buster was in heaven – he loves the snow and we hadn’t seen any since mid-May in Flagstaff.

Mount Baker, WA
Mount Baker, WA

The reason for all the snow is that Mount Baker is covered by ten main glaciers. Combine that with record snowfall – 95 FEET in 1999 – and you’ve got precipitation with staying power.

Glaciers - Mount Baker, WA

Image from US Geological Survey

I wonder how many years it’s been since anyone has used this mountaintop restroom.

Mount Baker, WA

Notice how the boys are panting – they were actually hot. It was the strangest juxtaposition I’ve ever experienced. It felt like summer, flowers bloomed like it was spring, and there was more snow than I’d ever seen in the middle of winter.

Mount Baker, WA Mount Baker, WA

There are miles of trails in the Mount Baker recreational area, and it lies within a national forest so your dog is welcome to join you. Pets must be leashed in developed areas (trailheads, campgrounds and picnic areas) and cannot be taken on Table Mountain Trail for safety reasons. Buster and Ty didn’t seem to mind at all.

Mount Baker, WA

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  • For a girl from Wisconsin, it was the craziest thing, Jodi! We keep our snow and summer separate. =)

  • Jodi Chick says:

    I’m laughing reading about your it’s hot, but snowy shock. It’s not uncommon here at all, especially up in the mountains. I can remember a whole lot of years when I’ve been snow bathing – like sun bathing, only your beach chair is actually perched on a blanket of snow.

  • […] our attention when Go Pet Friendly published two posts on their blog about it – one about Dog-Friendly Hiking at Mount Baker and one about Pet-Friendly Sightseeing in the North Cascades. It sounds like they really enjoyed […]

  • Hi Y’all,

    My Human says those pics remind her of times in the Alps.  Only in the Alps you would have found a tunnel through the snow to get into the rest room. :)

    Y’all come by now,
    Hawk aka BrownDog

  • I remember the record snow of 1999. I was working at a different ski resort at the time but we had crazy things happen because all of the snow. I did get to Mount Baker a few times though but the resort was closed a lot that season because the chairs on the lift were buried!

  • Roxanne @ Champion of My Heart says:

    Great pictures. It looks like fun.

  • Julie Melfi says:

    It looks beautiful and the dogs look SO HAPPY!!!

  • Cate says:

    I stare and admire Mount Baker in all it’s glory everyday and long to get a closer look. Thanks for these great pics, it’s urged me to take a trip and go and see it up close :)

  • Kristine says:

    What an amazing experience! If I ever get out to the West coast again I am definitely checking that out. I am glad Buster got a chance to frolick in the snow!

  • Vicki Cook says:

    I love seeing these pictures. When I was a kid, my dad took us to Mt. Rainier and I remember stepping out of the car into snow up to my thigh in the summer. Granted I was a lot shorter then, but it was still really cool!

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