The early summer weather continued into another week, with midweek temperatures climbing over 90° - unheard of for June in the PNW. With plans for backpacking over the weekend, I spent the week carefully monitoring the forecast for Saturday and Sunday, worrying about hot dry weather. To my relief, by Friday we had some relief in the form of rain and the weekend forecast had dropped from the mid nineties down to the low seventies, with some cloudy skies thrown in for good measure. Much better hiking weather! After our foraging last weekend, Andy and I had morels to enjoy, and while I had plans to try several new recipes - including a morel risotto I still want to try out - we liked them sautéed in an excessive amount of butter and tossed into a bowl of ramen so much that we ate it for dinner twice, even with the heat!Read More
Ah, Bellingham. Since some friends moved north, Andy and I have been making frequent trips to visit, and every time we do, I come home dreaming of making a permanent move to the city. Bellingham has all the things I love about Seattle (mountains, water, tons of nearby hiking) in a smaller, less crowded package. Recently, there's also been an explosion of fantastic new bars, coffee shops, and restaurants. It certainly didn't hurt that on the particular weekend we were in town, while rain was forecast from Portland up into Canada, we had nothing but sunshine in Bellingham! It was like a lovely little island of summer. Perhaps someday Andy and I will find ourselves moving north, but for now it's certainly lovely to have good friends who don't mind our frequent visits!Read More
Washington has a bad reputation for being perpetually rainy, but all that rain keeps our lush green forests happy! I often take our forests for granted, and have even been known to complain about hiking through the "boring trees." Every so often, I'm reminded just how lovely a quiet walk in the woods can be, and hiking to and from our work site for another trail work party with the Washington Trails Association on Saturday gave me the reminder I needed. The phenomenal views from a viewpoint the crew leader shared with the group certainly didn't hurt either! Since the trail we spent the day working is currently closed while new and improved trails to the summit are being built, we had the view all to ourselves, unheard of for any trail off I-90. Once again, we had a great time, mostly digging holes then filling them up again and getting filthy in the process.Read More
Life this week did not go according to my plans, but it ended up being a great week! I'd looked forward to going on our first backpacking trip of the year for weeks, but wet weather and our lack of gear for comfortably dealing with it foiled those plans. This turned out to be a good thing, since against our expectations, we hardly struggled at all carrying much heavier loads than usual for a day hike, and we were able to double our mileage for the day. Then, instead of a damp, cold, sleepless night in our tent, we drove home for an excellent dinner and a good night of sleep.
Sunday, we slept in, then Andy made a huge Irish-inspired breakfast of bangers, rashers, potatoes, onion, mushrooms, fried eggs, and sliced tomato. It was enough to satisfy even the hungriest hobbit! Then, after relaxing for a few hours to let the breakfast settle, we pulled on a packs again and went for a long walk on the Powerline Trail. We managed in all the work of a backpacking trip, with all the comforts of home in between.Read More