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  • Katie Zeitler Diamond

Dirty Harry's Balcony - Hike 8/14/22

This hike has been on my list of hikes to do since I think 2015. It's kind of funny that I've never made it up to the balcony considering I've taken the trail a few times to get to different climbing spots.


I set out this morning to go climbing off the DHPT (Dirty Harry's Peak Trail- the main artery that goes through this area), but I wasn't in the right headspace for climbing. For me, it's really hard to climb if I"m not mentally there for it. And I wasn't. So I left my group and hiked up to the "balcony" by myself instead.


I think it was just what I needed to do, even though I felt bad not sticking around to hang out with everyone.


Sometimes you have to listen to what you need and do that instead and I'm thankful to have people in my life who totally get that and support me. Also, I haven't solo hiked for awhile and it felt liberating and empowering. I'm going to try and get some more solo hiking in these next few months.


I think I saw maybe 15-20 people the whole time I was hiking. I had to double check that I was indeed hiking on a weekend...where was everyone today? (Not complaining........) It made it easier to mindfully meander through the forest and absorb my surroundings in a peaceful way with less people around, so I am thankful for the long bursts of solitude.



The trail was in perfect condition. No complaints there. It was a little warm out and the humidity was 76% when I checked it this morning. Perfect skies though and just an overall lovely August day.


As I was hiking back down, I found myself to be in a much better mood, my anxiety felt lower, and I felt tired...in the good kind of way.


You can read more about the trail, mileage, elevation gain, etc, here:

https://www.wta.org/go-hiking/hikes/dirty-harrys-balcony



Anyway, here are a few photos from today. These were all taken with my iPhone since I opted to leave my camera at home to have less weight in my pack.



"The Gun Show" climbing area. This was a 5.8 Micah led while I lead belayed him.



Started off on the hike up to the balcony. Lots of stops along the way to enjoy the view from different angles and openings in the trees.






This fireweed was taller than me! I'm 5'11", I don't think I've ever stood by fireweed that's taller than me.


View from Dirty Harry's balcony.


I bought these yesterday after a class I taught and was saving them for this morning. I don't eat a lot of potato chips, but every now and then they sound delicious! This was the perfect snack today.



The clouds were really neat looking.



Hiking back down to meet up with my group...




One of those dome spiderwebs. Guess it's kind of hard to see here, but I saw them everywhere today. I love spiders, I think they're pretty cool.


After I met up with my group, we stopped by XXX Root Beer Drive-In in Issaquah for some root beer, milkshakes, and snacks. Yum.


Thankful as always for these days that bring peace to the chaos of life.





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