Harts Pass Recreation Area, Okanogan National Forest
When I started birding only a decade ago, I learned of Harts Pass and wanted to check it out. Only problem was that by the time I learned of the pass, a mud/rockslide wiped out the road. It took several years before they fixed it and this year I finally got to go! The narrow road up the mountain is pretty hairy, especially in one area with a good drop off on the side of the road.
We hit the wildflower season perfectly and was treated to fields of lupine, false sunflower, paintbrush, and many others on the drive up to Harts Pass. At Harts Pass, the glacier lilies, shooting stars, and mashmarigolds were in full bloom in the marshes and meadows. The view up at Harts Pass Recreation Area were georgeous and the weather was perfect for seeing the mountains and valleys. At night, a seemingly infinite number of stars twinkled in the dark sky.
We spent a little time walking the Pacific Crest Trail from the Meadows Campground. We soaked in the beauty of the Okanogan National Forest. Birds around the area included Mountain Bluebirds (plus one fledgling), Townsend's Solitare, Mountain Chickadee, and either a Black-backed or Three-toed Woodpecker in the old burn area next to the campground. I was expecting more woodpeckers because of the large burn, but maybe the burn was too old or we just didn't get to spend enough time up there.
Either way I'd like to go back to enjoy more of the hiking trails in the area and to soak in more of the beauty!
Located: North of Mazama, Highway-20
Check conditions of the campground here.