Photo of the lake below .. This lovely trail was a clever fix for a mucky slope on the way to Heart Lake... part of last years trail work mentioned below. Creative kids! Soon after this you cross a huge log bridge that looks like it has laid across the creek for years...
August 8, 2011... the Heart Lake trail is in the Bird Creek meadows complex in Tract D, which is the eastern half of Mount Adams and surrounding wilderness that was deeded back to the Yakama Nation in 1972 and managed by Yakama Rangers.
To get to this trail drive up to to Mirror Lake on the SW of Mount Adams. there is a pay station there... and if the Ranger is around you can ask him for a map of the area. You can pay here for your entry fee, $5.00 which is good for 5 days but does not include camping. Drive up the hill on the right fork from Mirror... past the parking lot for Bird Creek Meadows (Round the Mountain trail #9 which connects with the South Climb trail on forest service land) and continue on down the hill towards Bench Lake. When you get to the Helispot parking place (which has an outhouse :-) park, and find the trail head just to the left, opposite from the outhouse. The trail is roughly 3/4 of a mile, but may actually be a bit longer now following some trail remodeling done last year by a volunteer youth group from WTA (Washington Trails Association). Most of it is very clear... but just past the lovely rock part of the trail you cross a log over a creek, and wind through a bit of muck in the meadow full of lovely flowers, up into the woods, up a steep bit of hill and come out at the top at the edge of a sweet little lake. at the far end of the lake you can find a trail to the right that goes to the top of this lovely cascade falls on Hellroaring Creek.
This hike is one of the easiest hikes of the various hikes up here... not much elevation change. The meadow itself is the one seen from the Hellroaring Viewpoint above the upper Bird Creek Meadows. Along the way as you come into the meadow itself you can see the trail cross over the beginning of a spring fed creek that has some wonderful drinking water.
Oh, and did I mention Mosquitos? THEY are BAD right now! BE PREPARED!
for more info on the area including fees and directions, see my BIrd Creek Area set description
These shots were all taken with my Canon Powershot...