As fall approaches in the Pacific Northwest, clear days for hikes with views become less and less frequent. On a mid-September Saturday, the weather forecast called for a sunny afternoon, so I left Seattle under overcast skies, hoping for the best. As I drove the 2.5 hours north to the closed bridge on Forest Road 38, the skies did in fact begin to clear. Good sign, I thought. I was looking forward to the promised views of the Twin Sisters Mountain, described in geology books as a piece of rock unique on the entire continent.
Dunite is normally extremely rare, and the Twin Sisters are a solid block of the stuff, giving the mountain an orange color different from other local ranges and drawing the attention of geologists from all over. It is not a form that has high commercial value, which explains why it remains remote and intact. The great thing about this particular closed road is that it will ensure a little more solitude to those heading for the two trailheads, and for that alone it benefits the outdoor community. And the views at the top may be much better than I suspect.
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