Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Bringing in the Hay

Early July marks the beginning of the hiking season - the time when all sensible people are out enjoying the high country, probing the retreating snowline as it uncovers the vast riches of the wilderness. I, however, through obligation and a less than steady source of income, must spend a month of summer waiting for the hay. Only a few days are actually spent hauling the hay; most of the time is spent hanging around the house waiting for farmers to call us. Time that could have been spent hiking is instead spent waiting for the silent phone to ring, and when the call does come, it is usually to tell us that the hay has been delayed by another week due to the long range forecast predicting a 20% chance of light mist.

Monday, July 7, 2014

My Bold Grandmother

My Grandmother is amazing! She just turned 90, and coincidentally published her third book. The book is  Bold Women in Alaska History (Amazon.com $10.80), and I can think of nobody more apt to have written it than my own bold grandmother, Marjorie Cochrane.

Hiking in Willapa National Wildlife Refuge

My latest article was just published today in Seattle Backpackers Magazine! Check it out: Hiking in WIllapa National Wildlife Refuge

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Backpacking on Long Island

Hiking along Smoky Hollow
The weathermen were out to get us again. Just a few days before our planned trip to the Enchanted Valley, the forecast had turned from mostly sunny to solid rain and clouds for the foreseeable future. We awoke Sunday with barely 2 days of sunshine before us and no time left to get ready for a long trip. A split-second change of plans and 30 minutes spent throwing gear into backpacks put us on the road underneath the wobbling length of a borrowed canoe. Two hours later we had arrived at the headquarters of Willapa National Wildlife Refuge, and with the canoe wallowing through the receding tide, crossed the channel to the wild bulk of Long Island.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Scotch Broom

I have sorely neglected this blog for the last few weeks, but now that I have more time to write I will start posting again! For now here is a gallery of photos of the invasive weed Scotch broom, taken beneath the transmission lines at Gnat Creek. I have never seen such a wide variety of colors of this weed, if only it wasn't so ugly the rest of the year, and so harmful to the environment!

Friday, May 30, 2014

Barrier Falls

Barrier Falls
Due to heavy memorial day traffic (so many campers!) and a tight schedule I was unable to do as much as I would have liked to on the way home from a weekend on the Long Beach Peninsula. We decided to drive home via the Oregon side of the Columbia River, because for some inexplicable reason we thought it might be easier to cope with the hoards of camper on the long straight stretches of Highway 30 than the on the curving rollercoaster of roads on the Northern side of the river! It didn't make much difference; apparently all the roads of the Pacific Northwest are bumper-to-bumper campers on Memorial day.

However I did get a chance to stop a photograph Barrier Falls; a beautiful cascade just a short walk from the Gnat Creek fish hatchery, which is located less than 30 minutes to the north of Astoria along highway 30. So enjoy the photos while I try to get the memories of crawling along at 30 miles per hour on a 50 MPH highway behind the Great White Landwhales, out of my head.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

North Cascades article published in Seattle Backpackers Magazine!

Today Seattle Backpackers Magazine published my article Land of the Golden Larches. My sincerest thanks to the folks at SBM for publishing the story, and for their fine editing work!

So check out the article and begin planning your own trip to high peaks of the North Cascades! seattlebackpackersmagazine.com/golden-larches

Here's some photos that didn't make it into the article: