Tag Archives: hiking

Bill and Greta visiting – Kelly Point, Mazamas, and Portland’s Rhododendron garden!

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Friday, 18-October-2019

 

Sarah’s Mom and Dad came to visit!  If you think Sarah and I have been having a busy year… well, you’d be right.  But Her Mom and Dad haven’t had a boring year either, so when they had a chance to escape up to Portland after a business trip, all of us were really excited to get to visit, catch up, and have a nice weekend of downtime and relaxing.

We had a few adventures scheduled up, but we mostly left room for us to explore and spent time together – Video calls are great, and I am extremely thankful to be living in the future where we can video call literally anywhere in the world without even noticing a delay, but in-person visits are still the ideal.

 

So we walked, explored, took them to some of our favorite restaurants, and explored somewhere we’d never been before – The Rhododendron garden!

First up was Kelly Point park – it’s a lovely walk, and a great way to tire Ollie out a bit to keep the crazy down to almost-sane levels.  It was excellent as always, and we even got to see some cool mushrooms!  Not otters or eagles this time, but it was still fun scanning the surf for them.

Then, we stopped by Sarah’s old workspace at the Mazamas – The Mazamas Mountaineering Center is where she’d been teaching kids to climb this summer, and so she got a chance to show off the walls and the Mazamas library.  I… may have… possibly… gotten a little distracted exploring the library.  I admit to everything, and it was awesome.

After the MMC, we headed to the Rhododendron garden.  We hadn’t been there before, but Sarah had heard amazing things about it, and it sounded like an excellent place to explore.  It was raining, as it so often does in Portland, but honestly I think that made the garden even more beautiful.  The rain on the leaves, and the petals on the flowers… it was lovely.

 

 

Hiking Herman Creek with our friend!

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Sunday, 22-Sept-2019

 

 

It’s been a while since we’ve hiked in the Gorge, hasn’t it?  I mean… it’s been a really long time – long enough that driving out past the dog park was definitely an interesting experience, and absolutely a fun adventure!

That’s just for me, though… our friend Charlie hadn’t been hiking in the gorge for, as best as he could remember, nearly 15 years!

 

Needless to say, we were all excited.  Ollie most of all, obviously, but Charlie next, and then Sarah and I nearly as excited as he was.  I mean, we hadn’t been hiking with Charlie in ages – and good friend hikes are pretty critical to one’s continued positive mental state.  A newly re-growing Columbia River Gorge absolutely fits that bill, if I do say to myself.

Honestly, there’s not much to say aside from that.  So sit back, relax, and enjoy the photos!

A speed hike in search of Chantrelles, 12-Oct-2019

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Saturday, 12-October-2019

 

Woosh!  Zoom!  Bam boom zap!  Crunch crunch crunch stepstepstepstepstep.

 

I was hiking alone, with fast music playing on my headphones.

I was on a mission – I had four hours to go four miles into the Gorge, search some forest floor for chantrelles, and then hike back out to the car.  Then, a three hour drive to get down to Bend before having dinner with Sarah and her friends.

I’d slept in that morning – if I’d gotten up earlier, I wouldn’t have had to rush… but you know what?  I didn’t want to get up early; I’d been getting up early for a few weeks straight, and hadn’t had a chill solo morning in longer than I could remember.  I enjoyed my slow morning, and having to rush on the hike gave me that little extra boost that made it both fun and a challenge… and also helped me focus into a really positive head space.

So I hiked.  I ran a little, hiked quickly, and kept moving.

My food for the day was hamburgers.  One for the drive to the trailhead, one after I got to the chantrelle area, and then one when I got back to the car.  It was glorious.

 

Did I complete the hike, you may ask?

Yes.  Yes I did.  I held ~3mph hiking in, on a fairly steep trail, and then landed around 3.5mph on the way out thanks to the downhill.

I didn’t find any chantrelles… but I did find some Lobster Mushrooms – they’re chantrelles that turn bright red, and supposedly taste exactly like lobsters.  I didn’t end up eating any though, since Lobster Mushrooms have a much shorter shelf-life than chantrelles; they only last a day or two after turning before they’re not safe to eat, and neither Sarah or myself felt confident enough in them to risk sauteeing them up for breakfast the next day.

You know what, though?  I’m fine with that.  I had a great time, accomplished my goals, and felt good afterward.  Sometimes we stop and smell the roses, but other times we’ve just got to buckle down, play some loud rock music, and rush forward.  Yay speed hiking!