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North Cascades Photography: Skagit Valley Sunrise

Andy Porter Photography | 03/19/2019 | Hiking, Photo Tours & Lessons, Scenic View Points, Skagit Valley & Fidalgo Island, The Great Outdoors

Photographing sunrise requires a bit of luck. You have to decide where to be for the sunrise, and so you go, in the dark, hoping for nice light...

Once you're there and the sunrise starts, its usually too late to change locations. Today was one of those exceptions!

There are many wonderful vantage points along the Cascade Loop Scenic Highway from which to photograph the Skagit Valley. One of my favorites is Sauk Mountain. The Skagit River loops in broad curves to the west... But this is only a hike for the summer months, access to the trail usually begins in late May.  Depending upon the years snow fall the wildflowers start blooming in June. Its quite a sight. Here is the link with directions. 

For year round access the view from the Samish Overlook is not to be beat. The overlook is located near the Alger exit on I-5. You need a Discover Pass. There are rest rooms at the Overlook and a trailhead leading to Oyster Dome and other places.

Here are directions to the Samish Overlook:

Directions: Samish Overlook    Lake Samish Rd     Bow, WA 98232

From I-5 exit 240, Alger. Go northwest on Samish Lake Road for .5 miles. Turn left on Barrel Springs Road for .7 of a mile. Turn right on B-1000 Road signed Blanchard Forest Block. Go 1.5 miles to intersection with the B2000, signed for Samish Overlook. Turn left and drive 2.1 slow miles to the Samish Overlook and the trailhead.

This morning I got an early start and headed to the Samish Overlook, but the road was closed. At Barrell Springs Road there was a barricade...so no luck.

It looked like it might actually turn out to be a nice sunrise, so I headed to my 3rd go-to place for sunrise, the Samish River.   Here is the image from this morning. I swear the clouds were trying to spell out something for me. I will work on decoding the message later.

Here is a pano from the same spot.

If you can read the message (maybe its in Italian!) please send me a translation!

Photo Tours!

  • Tulip Photo Tours will start soon, these are 3 hour sunrise or sunset tours through the tulip fields.
  • Summer brings North Cascades Photo Tours, day hikes and overnight hikes to awesome places in the North Cascades.

These next images of the Samish River were taken from a bridge along the Bayview-Edison Road.

Here are some images from past visits, from the bridge facing the mouth of the river.

If you go to visit the Samish River be sure to stop by the Bread Farm, in Edison, and bring lots of cash.

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