Stehekin 2010!!

Rick and I just spent 3 and a half days in Stehekin with Leslie.  This has become an annual trip where we stay at Leslie’s cabin and do day hikes.  I think this was our 6th summer visit in a row.  Everything about our weekend was perfect, from beginning to end, from the Enchanted Valley that is Stehekin, the clear skies, the beckoning trails promising impossibly beautiful views and a water fall, the pine scented forests and air perfumed with wild mock orange flowers in bloom, the pristine glacial melt-off river, wildlife, cozy cabin, great food, to the best of all, time with Rick and Leslie!

Normally I wouldn’t post SO MANY PICTURES, but I can’t resist.  I can’t whittle these photos down to anything less than what I have here:

Boarding the float plane at Chelan:

The Landing Dock:

The bakery, not far from our cabin, where we go every morning for a cup of coffee:

On our first afternoon there, Leslie and I took a short 4 mile hike to Rainbow Falls:

And it is such a luxury to have a cozy cabin to come home to after our hikes:

Keisha is an old girl at the Stehekin River Resort who greets us year after year:

Exterior of the sweet cabin:

and the interior of the cabin (Ricky doing his zen dish washing):

Farmer Karl Gaskill ( has an organic garden near the cabin.  I made daily visits here to buy produce for our meals.  In addition to all sorts of vegetables, he also had organic Sweetheart cherries and apricots and, of course, his homemade goat cheese  (his goats live on the property):

And here’s Karl, the original owner of the Honey Bear Bakery which started right here on his property in Stehekin before he and his wife moved to Seattle for a while. He is the real thing: totally one with his garden and the earth, never wears shoes in the summer, a vegan who eats only raw vegetables and occasionally tastes the cheese to see if it is good.  He is a forest elf, and a salt of the earth kind of guy:

I had to take this picture of rows and rows of my favorite vegetable in the whole wide world:  KALE

Rows of vegetables are graced with flowers for companion gardening and beauty. Here is a dinner dish sized dhalia:

On our first full day, we hiked  10 miles along the Rainbow Creek Trail.  I wish I could bottle the scent of the wild mock orange we kept smelling on the trail or sear the color of the sky in my mind forever:

Our lunch stop… danglin’ over-the-creek booted feet:

My tree huggin’ buddy, Leslie:

While Leslie and I hiked, Rick had fishing fever!  And he caught some trout beauties and fed us well!  Here is the 18 inch trout catch of THE WEEKEND (there couldn’t be a prouder face!!):

Relaxing back at the cabin:

Stehekin Valley is gorgeous.  It is part of the North Cascades National Park. Stehekin is at the head of dramatic Lake Chelan.  Lake Chelan was dug out by a prehistoric glacier that was 75 miles long  and the resulting lake today is 55 miles long and one mile distance from shore to shore in some places. Peaks on either side of the lake rise to more than 6000 feet above water in some places.  The Indian word Stehekin means “the way through” because this Shangri-La valley provided a route between the eastern and western sides of Washington state.

Our abundant table at mealtimes  (many food items came from farmer Karl’s garden).  Pesto tortellini, beets, kale, lemon dressing and salad, blueberries, sweetheart cherries and apricots:

And Rick joined us on our last day of hiking 9-10 miles along the Lakeside Trail:

Lunch stop along the Lakeside Trail:

Shadow Play…I can’t believe how well matched Leslie and I are in stamina.  We have hiked many miles together and have shared many treasured vistas:

On the last day, Leslie came into the cabin saying, “I saw a BIG HAIRY BEAR!”  We all went back to where she spotted him near the cabin and sure enough, there it was!  (Rick got this shot!!)


4 Responses to “Stehekin 2010!!”

  1. Rick Clark Says:

    Wow. That nails one of the most beautiful weekends of my life. Thanks, Frannie!



  2. kay Says:

    Wow! That place is amazing!! It is going on my list of places to go. Of course, it may be tough to match the meals you made, including trout!! a feast for all the senses to be sure.
    I could pass on the bear encounter….


  3. Randy Says:

    I remember Karl from the Honey Bear Bakery in Wallingford (long gone) I knew he was moving back to Stehekin, and have often wondered how he was faring. Now I know. His garden looks wonderful, in keeping with his goals and skills. Beautiful place, great pictures.


  4. Joon Says:

    Another picturesque place you’ve visited. You’re so lucky! I hope to visit this beautiful town some day ^__^


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