Driving to the trailhead, these Forest Service roads are developing serious washboard effect. Coupled with the St. Helens ash, expect *everything* to be saturated in summer with a fine dust. Wrap your pack in plastic if it's in the bed of a pick-up or in the trunk of a car.
We ran into a ranger requesting our wilderness permits (day hike from base camp). He said all users, day or overnight, required permits. As our group had split into two, with some members hiking to Cispus Basin, we didn't have the permit. He let it slide as he was out of his jurisdiction. (from adjoining National Forest)
"After the first glass, you see things as you wish they were. After the second, you see things as they are not. Finally, you see things as they really are, which is the most horrible thing in the world."
--Oscar Wilde on Absinthe