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Iron Peak - Face to Face with Mr. Billy

At the Saddle

Iron Peak is one of our favorite hikes. We did it last year in late June. Our friend wanted to go hiking in the Teanaway and suggested that we do Iron Peak. It would be a good time especially with the late snow melt this year - we might even see a few wildflowers still on the saddle.

The day was foggy here in Seattle. We have had a strange on-shore flow this month bringing us foggy morning. It usually burns off by noon or early afternoon. It has been keeping the temperatures moderate. We did not get out of the overcast until we went over Snoqualmie Pass.

It was the normal drive of about 2 1/2 hours. The dirt road had been graded up to the turnoff for Beverly and quite a few potholes to slow us down for the last few miles. There were a couple of other cars at the trail head.

The trail was dry and dusty. I took my time since I'm out of shape. It was quite hazy due to fires around Wenatchee and in central BC. I was surprised that we could not see Mt. Stuart clearly. It wasn't until the last mile or so that we saw some lupine and other wildflowers.

I mentioned last year that we had taken a picture at the saddle back in the mid-80's. We took a copy along and looked around for the spot we had taken the picture. We couldn't find it so we just found an interesting spot and tried to recreate it. It was fun.

Iron Peak 1985 Iron Peak 2010

We started back and our friend asked if we ever saw any goats. Nope. We had never seen any goat any of the times we had hiked this trail or others in the Teanaway or Esmeralda area. I had heard there were some but never saw one.

We hadn't gone more than maybe a dozen steps when G who was in the front said "There's a goat on the trail"! I thought for certain he was joking until I looked over his shoulder and sure enough - there was a billy goat coming up the trail. He was real interested in us and kept coming closer... and closer... We didn't know the proper etiquette for meeting a goat. We finally start around him and he passed on by.

It was gusty at the saddle and one our hats went flying. The guys started down the other side to get the hat while I stayed up at the saddle. I turned around and there was Mr. Billy Goat again. He kept coming closer and closer but he just stayed at the saddle. Finally he found a spot where a horse had peed and decided it would make a good salt lick. We watched him snorting around in the dirt until we finally decided to head down and leave the mountain to him.

It was a quick dusty trip down the mountain and back to Seattle. But what an experience to come face to face with a Mountain Goat.

View towards Esmeralda basin from Iron Peak trail
Hazy View along the trail

View from Saddle below Iron Peak
View from the Saddle

Coming up the trail
Coming up the trail

This is my trail
This is my trail

I'm just going to stand here and block your path
I'm just going to stand here and block your path

Okay, I'll let you go by
Okay, I'll let you go by

Hey - what are they doing?
Hey - what are they doing?

I told you this is my trail
I told you this is my trail

Gotta love the view
Gotta love the view

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Comments (10)

Marta, a great idea to position your photos together. The scenery is stunning and I have to say the billy goat's kinda cute too! Enjoyed your post.

I love your comparative photos!

The goat looks pretty big - I think I would have been a little afraid.

Donna in SF:

Marta, loved the beautiful scenery! And the side-by-side photos were fun.

Mr. Billy is one handsome goat! Great pictures!!


Whoa, I think I would have given Mr. Billy (and his horns) lots of room!!!! Mind you, it sounds like he was pretty interested in your group.

Wonderful photos, Marta.


Loved the then and now photos.

And that is one BIG goat -- he looks intimidating.

What stunning landscape. You got some really great shots of the goat! His horns would have had me nervous.


Oh my goodness, that Billy Goat looks like a Pixar character rather than an actual real animal! :O

Kathy (Trekcapri):

Hi Marta, I loved the side by re-creation photos of you and G. Fabulous idea. I noticed a big carin in the first photo.

This looks like a great place to hike in. Your photos are beautiful as always. It seems like you developed quite a relationship with Mr. Billygoat. I don't blame him for being protective of his beautiful surroundings but glad he decided to be nice and share.

Thanks so much for sharing.

I think that he was looking for people to play with for awhile!

Beautiful shots.

Terry (teaberry):

Wow, I had no idea that a goat could be so big.

You and George look great - then and now!

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