The Twins - August 17, 2013
Coordinator Edwin Case, narration by Lois Soulia and pictures to come soon

On Saturday, August 17, 9 Friends of the Umpqua Hiking Club set out to climb the Twins, two volcanic cinder cones off Hwy 58 close to Waldo Lake. Two charming high school students joined the group to the delight of Rachel’s son, Bailey, and the rest of the hikers. It does take a long time to get to the trailhead but there is some pleasant scenery along Dexter Reservoir and a little highway repair and construction going on around the tunnel to keep the journey interesting.

Arriving at the trailhead, parking was difficult because the finish line for a huge race for runners to raise money for the Wilamette Pass Ski Patrol was situated where the trail forks up to the Peaks and west for the Pacific Crest Trail. The parking area was full necessitating members leaving their cars parked along the road.

The group sorted themselves out and headed up the trail accompanied by various individuals who were helping with or running the race. Lois and Susanne were the last FOU hikers to reach the fork and Lois misread the trail sign and so the two of them headed west on the PCT instead of up the trail to the Peaks, searching for miles for the trail Lois thought would lead them up to the peaks. Stubborn isn’t always smart and in this case the two hikers racked up almost 4 ½ miles and ended up at Charlton Lake. Meanwhile Edwin, good leader that he is, was wondering where they were and attempting to contact them by radio and sending out directions regarding a fork in the trail further up the trail, never realizing that the two of them were on the wrong trail. Edwin had the right to expect that Lois knew where to go because she had been there before. After reaching the lake the two of them turned back retracing their steps the long 4 miles back to the trailhead. Lois was briefly tempted by a trail that took off at the lake but better sense prevailed, --always choose the trail that you know over the trail of the unknown destination.

The scenery from the Peaks was as wonderful as promised and the weather cooperated with no thunder storms or too much smoke. After the last two stragglers arrived, everyone was able to start home, much later than was expected. Some members thought that the trail was more difficult than the “moderate” description but of course, everyone’s opinion depends upon ability and experience. Edwin surely had to be relieved to have completed the responsibility of the third hike in a row this summer. His efforts are greatly appreciated, he has been a terrific coordinator.

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