I began at the Smithbrook trail head which junctions with the PCT at Union Gap. There was a light mist when I started but that ended after about ten minutes and off came the rain jacket. The blue berry bushes are past their prime, most of them have now shed their leaves but there were still enough that they provided some color along the trail. The meadow at the junction of the PCT and Mount McCausland was still vibrant with gold grasses and berry leaves. Part way down the descent to the lake I met PCT through hiker "city girl" from Munich, Germany on her way to Stehekin for her end point.
Once at the lake the sun and clouds alternated and provided dramatic light on Lichtenberg Mountain and the lake. On the way back I stopped at the wide meadow along the PCT where the trail breaks off to the lake to take in the colors and stream that flows into the lake.
The trail is in good condition and dryer that usual, no mud today. There was a tree down just a few minutes up from the trail head which already has a well worn path around it and another tree on the section that drops down to the lake. It can be stepped through between two broken parts of the trunk.