Monday, July 13, 2009

Back from the Wilderness & Feeling Fine!

Doesn't it make you wish you were there? I just love this place. Every summer, I backpack into the Siskiyou Wilderness, and this year was no different. My 12th trip in since 1996, the only thing to mar my wilderness wonderland was that Cole couldn't join me. Dang bad back! But I managed to have a stellar time anyway.

As you can see, we had a kick-ass time! There were loads of wildlife, including: a ruffed grouse, a rubber boa, a lazuli bunting, & wildflowers galore. (But sadly no wolverines, which I just today learned live there. No sign of bear this year, either.) Played some cribbage, drank a lot of tequila, & maintained a clean record during every game of pocket around the campfire each night; no ramming for this girl! But just to pique your curiosity, here's a shot of a group ram from Sunday morning (let your imagination run wild when contemplating what was cropped out of this picture):

I did a bit o' knittin' in the meadow too. Brought the socks I'm working on, the ones I'm calling Veltrelac Socks but which are in actuality Annetrelacs. That's what I'm workin' on in the first pic, & you can see how happy making they are. My first attempt at entrelac, they're proving much easier & less fussy than I expected. For the 1 or 2 non-knitting VW readers, entrelac makes a lovely diamond-shaped basket weave textured fabric. I'm using a skein of Schaefer Anne yarn, just like the pattern calls for, & it looks like it is indeed well-suited; the color blocks are shaping up nicely.

Had no major equipment failures this year (2 years ago, we brought the wrong fuel for the stove; doh!). There was one minor moment of panic when I discovered that when Cole borrowed my boots this winter he took out the insoles & didn't replace 'em! But I was able to sub the crappy insoles in my Keens and they were better than nothin'. He busted a lacing hook on one boot too, but skipping that pair didn't seem to do any harm. I made it in with my usual under-big-toe blisters which responded nicely to the Dr. Scholl's blister treatment pads I brought. Highly recommend those!

The only other 'death' might just turn out to be the Chicken. He might not see another summer in the high country. His rubber chix skin is so UV-degraded he' leaving pinfeathers behind; so sticky, I had to tote him in a prophylactic plastic bag! The 2 photos below show him today, and in better days. You can see more of Mr. Ba-gawk here if you are 'that type'.

FINALLY remembered to do a panorama shot of the valley this year! It's not perfect, but looks pretty cool. I'm standing about 100 feet from my tent on a small (2ft by 6ft) glacial erratic in the meadow to get a good vantage point. The big rock with the tree to it's left is also an erratic, and is the site of Cole & my wedding ceremony last year. (You can see the original size here if ya wanna.)

Coming home was AWESOME, despite the fantastic time I had. You may remember that when I'm gone, Cole gets very schmoopy & lonesome, & his coping mechanism is to clean. So I returned to a happy, welcoming husband AND a spic-n-span house. PLUS, while unpacking I found my missing brand-new lip balm that I thought I lost in the meadow. AND, there were a couple a packages of goodies waiting for me. More on that tomorrow, so be sure to come back!


  1. It looks like you had tons of fun. Too bad Cole's back was acting up. But would you mind sending him my way because my kitchen really needs to be cleaned and I would appreciate it if some one else would clean it up for me.

    I love the photos!

  2. Anonymous2:39 PM

    Brilliant story! Loved looking at the pictures. What are those men doing (are they drinking something or all playing harmonica?)

    The scenery looks fabulous. Campfires and no deadlines. Yes!

    Thanks for sharing your break V -

    I have changed my blog around a bit now too - getting the hang of it now.

    Off the drool over the Painted Desert that I just bought from a lovely Etsy shop :)



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