A couple years ago, we hiked the trail to Finch Lake, only to fall short by a couple miles due to weather — or maybe one of us had to get back for a “function” — or who knows.
On Friday, August 29th, Map Master and I were determined to make it to the lake. As it turns out — we needed that determination!
The day started out beautiful and sunny.
Several trails converge about 1.8 miles from the trailhead.
The grade increased as the trail entered the area devastated by a forest fire in 1978. (I believe this is where we turned around a couple years ago.) Because of the bare, charred trees, we had beautiful views of the mountainside.
The sun was shinning as we crossed several foot bridges and continued on the trail.
And quite suddenly – there it was! Finch Lake.
Woo hoo! We made it this time! A leisurely stroll around the lake found us the perfect rock to enjoy our lunch. Even a couple ducks floated by to show off their bug-diving lake skills. They were quite entertaining.
Hey — what’s that in the water? That’s a funny lookin’ duck! Why — it’s Map Master’s rain coat!
We were facing southeast as we dined on lunch. Had we been facing northwest, we would have been able to see the dark rain clouds rolling in.
We quickly downed our chocolates (nothing gets in the way of that!), shook out Map Master’s rain coat, and quickly headed 4 miles down the trail.
The skies were getting darker and darker.
We were just one mile from the trailhead when it began raining. It wasn’t raining hard. Map Master and I found it quite invigorating actually.
We heard cracks of thunder (“Um — let’s pick up the pace”), and flashes of lightning (“Let’s pick up the pace a bit more please”).
And then the most Bizarro (one of Map Master’s favorite words) thing happened. There was a crack of thunder and flash of lightning at the same time!
Map Master knew exactly what this meant. I did not. It was kind of surreal actually.
The dialogue went something like this:
MM: “Bear Scout! That was REALLY close!”
MM: “YES! Didn’t you notice there was NO time between the clap of thunder and the bright flash of lightning?”
BS: “I did see the flash, but gosh — isn’t this invigorating? And the flash was so beautiful!”
MM (sigh): “We need to get out of here.”
To learn more, I Googled this when I got home. Google (who knows EVERYTHING) says, “If you see lightning and hear thunder at the same time, that lightning is very close. You are probably in line with the storm, and it may be moving toward you.” It went on to say quite a bit more using words like “particularly dangerous,” “potential killer,” “striking as far as 5 or 10 miles from the storm,” etc.
I’m really glad I didn’t know that at the time.
We made it back to the trailhead in record time — albeit a bit wet — proud that our determination got us to Finch Lake. After all — what’s a little bit of rain anyway …..