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Just a meandering soul sharing my backyard. Visit my Flickr page too! www.flickr.com/photos/meanderingwa/

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Nothing much, how about you?

Yes I am back.

I was never really gone but it certainly seems my Summer was long and, I have to admit, filled with ennui.  Between a virus that hit me hard and frequent trips into work on the weekends, I never felt greatly inspired for blogging.  Fires late in the Summer kept me home from so many of my favorite areas.  I did some fun stuff and I visited an amazing place I will tell you about later.

    
It seemed that Summer would never arrive and rain persistently kept me from my favorite areas.  I even got turned back by snow in early June.  I had some nice visits to Eastern Washington and one of my favorite encounters was with this Great Horned Owl nest.



I paid a quick visit to my favorite hike to Red Top, but was turned back by snow.  I stopped at the little abandoned cabin to check on an orchid I know blooms there and encountered this feral peony bloom with a butterfly, perfect timing.



Late in  June I left for a vacation to England and Madeira.  On Madeira I hiked from hotel to hotel using a Sherpa service to transport my bags.  This method of travel is quite popular in Europe and I am aiming for another trip next Summer. 

I was in London for the solstice.



Madeira is remarkable for its rugged volcanic mountains.  I will certainly return to hike in this area.  I fell ill a few days into my visit and did not feel up to the 20Km hike along the spine of the island.  At ~ 6000 feet, I didn't feel totally confident I could easily and safely cover the distance.  I contented myself with spending the day at the hotel enjoying the view and drinking tea.


My neighbor and I had a trip rock hounding.  Augite crystals are found no other place in Washington but this one location.  It was a blazing hot day and we were introduced to several methods of finding rocks.




One new activity that I have really embraced is Mud Racing, or MOB events; Mud Obstacles and Beer.  Warrior Dash is one of the larger events but I am finding smaller events sponsored by local community groups to be just as much fun.  I did eight events this summer and look forward to the next one.  I braved the North Bend Warrior Dash along with some co-workers.



I had two nice hikes, both of which involved trains.  Lester is a ghost town in the Cascades that served as a railroad stop back in the day.  For a long time I have wanted to hike up the abandoned road to pay a visit. 


A second hike took me to the Iron Goat trail.  I need to go back as my visit was highlighted by a fall that broke my camera.  This Pika was the final subject for my Olympus.



My friend Ron suggested a few cameras for me and I was instantly in love with the Nikon Coolpix 510.  I have been out and about snapping pictures for my projects.  I was able to capture the August Blue Moon



This fearsome Isopod on International Rock Flipping Day




A handsome rooster at the Evergreen State Fair.



The stretch of 80+ sunny days was finally broken last weekend with rain.  I feel all is right with the world now.  I even see a hit of new snow on some of the higher mountains today.  I ran out to Snoqualmie Falls on Sunday and got this pictures of the clouds for my Scavenger Hunt.


and Kubota Gardens for the Fall color in the rain



I will probably be heading to the beach soon.  I saw a kite there that I cannot get out of my mind.  My little place in Neah Bay, Bullman Beach, is not going to be open in the winter this year, so I am looking for a little snuggery for the holiday week.

So that's about everything.  I will try to do some stories on Madeira soon.  It is a lot like here, only different.


3 comments:

  1. It is so great to have you back and I hope you are feeling OK now. I guess mud racing and all that you must be. Sounds like a fun summer overall. Love the great horned owls. My friend Rachael sits with one every Thursday and calls me from the rescue to chat. the great horned owl's name is Orion and now he chats with me too. Chirp, chirp, he says into the phone. So sweet, it gives me chills. Now, if you haven't removed your word verification, I really hope you will. It is such nonsense and no one uses it. I don't leave comments on blogs that do. Once I left a long one that meant a lot to me and I could never figure out the double word verification, so I had to give up and not leave a comment. Please consider if you still have it.

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  2. Hey, welcome back. Nice pictures :)

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  3. Nice post. Like the Isopod! What a wonderful creature. Must visit Kubota and Snoqualmie Falls. To my shame have been to neither.

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