December 8th, 2020

Adventure, Just things, Outdoors, Road Trip, Scotty Hilander, Travel

It was a leisurely yet productive weekend. I have gotten things done on the computer that I needed to do; updating some more accounts and printing/sending off forms, yet I still had time for some hikes with the dog. It has been too beautiful to not take advantage of that and the exercise is always good for us both. Another eye post-op appointment in a couple of weeks and my calendar will be clear (at least that’s how it is for now…always subject to change, of course).

I have been cooking stuff and putting it in prep containers. Last night I boiled up some chicken thighs and portioned it out to freeze. I can take one of the containers out, heat it up with some additional water and some soup base from a jar. I can then make some homestyle soup or some chicken and dumplings. Today I made up and froze some Sloppy Joes. I don’t know if I can put anything else in the freezer but I will shuffle things around to see what I can do. This is definitely one of the things I missed about being in the trailer.

Tomorrow is laundry day since I will be down to my last change of clothes in the morning. I have to go to the laundromat early to do that and avoid the crowds. I will start my clothes washing and then maybe pay them to dry and fold so I can go do other stuff. They used to offer that service and I will gladly pay for it since it is really not that much. I have to go over to my old storage unit and move out of it, then take that stuff, along with some other things, to the new (and cheaper) storage unit. Now that I am back in a house I don’t need a heated storage unit.

It has been a week now that I have been out of the trailer and it has been so nice to be in a house again after six months. Traveling with it is one thing, but actually living in a 15′ trailer is challenging. It is fun to travel with; it is so easy to maneuver, I can take it in places where bigger trailers are not allowed, I have more options of sites it will fit in…just some of the plusses for travel. Staying put and living in it is another story. They are not made for that unless you get a huge trailer and that is not going to be happening.

I really hope to get some form of travel in soon but it is looking grim with the ‘rona escalating to even more epic proportions and no end in sight. I am starting to think about some local options when I can get the trailer out again. With the weather that may be a while yet, but it also gives me time to see how the pandemic progresses. I am much more concerned about that than the weather. Since travel is my thing I always think about it so looking at ideas is nothing new; not being able to go is new, but we do what we have to do.

For now I am happy just to pack up some snacks and take a drive to get out of the house for the day. It may not seem like much to some people, but it is a change of scenery and an escape from the rampant stupidity that is going on. Living here there is a wide variety of places to go and things to see and do away from the masses as long as you avoid weekends and holidays.

I could do a trip and stay in a hotel – I got over some of that fear on the trip I took over here some weeks back – but I am staying away from them for now so the trailer is the only viable option I will consider other than a daytrip someplace. It would also mean going to get takeaway at restaurants as well so even more exposure. I have had to go into more places than I have wanted to lately since I moved but I have needed to buy things. I still spend as little time as possible in any crowded place and traveling is no exception.

I would really like to do a multi-day Amtrak trip at some point. They seem to be reasonably safe if you spring the extra money for a roomette and keep to yourself in it. I like trains and train travel and the last trip to Vancouver, BC was scenic and fun and I have been on several in Europe. I would really like to do the Coast Starlight train down into California in the future when it is safer to go visit places. I’d have to board the dog but I would not be gone more than a few days. For me it would be more about the journey but I am always open for options (as one who travels should be…).

Of course Europe is always on the list but is closed to US passports for now. I almost seriously considered getting a ticket for next year with my airline miles when the pandemic started to calm down over there a bit. Airlines were doing no change/cancellation fees and that made it tempting with sone of the fares I have seen. With everything going on I wasn’t sure how things would work if I used miles and wanted/needed to cancel or change the flight and I had other priorities than to find out details. I can look into it now that things are calming down personally and I have the time to do it but no hurry. Now things are heating up again everywhere with the ‘rona so who knows when we will be able to go anywhere, be it far away and exotic or close by.

Speaking of travel, I have gotten a few new e-mails about cheap/discounted airfares. The website I use is having a contest for up to $1000 for you and a friend to go on vacation. If you might be interested, click here before December 11th, 2020. If you sign up on there I also get an entry. No pressure…just an FYI to pass along. I get nothing out of it other than an extra sweepstakes entry. Unless you want to take me on the trip with you!

It was another early morning (before 6:00 A.M.) and perhaps my days of sleeping in until after 8:00 A.M. are over for now. It is not getting light until after 7:00 so it’s coffee and a sunrise. I have said before I like getting up early but I like staying up late too.

I think I like getting up early better these days so that’s about it for tonight.

Thanks for reading my blog! Be safe and stay well. It’s all about the science.

August 7, 2015

Adventure, Just things, Outdoors, Travel, Uncategorized

Yesterday I came over to hang with Meghan at her place in Skykomish. I got here late in the day so didn’t get to see much. I have been through this area before but was just passing through.

It is a pretty area and quite reminiscent of parts of Colorado except some of the peaks, like Mt. Index, are very jagged like the Sawtooths in Idaho. There are beautiful streams and lots of trails as well, and Saturday I am going on an all-day hike.

Today I saw Meghan at work and she showed me around the Forest Service office she works in. That was pretty cool to see. After that I did a short loop trail by Deception Falls. It was the first forest hike I have done in over a year – between work and the wreck I have not been out in the woods much and I have missed it.

Meghan at Work

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Meghan got off work early and we went to an airplane museum, where we saw some interesting planes. One thing that was really cool was the DC-3, and they even fired up the engines whole we were standing there!

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It is great to see Meghan again and it was great to be in the woods again. I have had quite a bit on my mind lately and badly need to decompress and try to regroup. I did not really realize how bad I needed this weekend until today when I set foot on that trail and saw those giant trees and the waterfalls. I felt a sense of peace that I have not had in a long while and I really am looking forward to being being high on the trail tomorrow.

Until then…

It damn sure won’t be another year between hikes like that.

A Hike In Olympic National Park – 07/31/13

Adventure, Outdoors, Travel, Uncategorized

On the recommendation of a friend, I took a hike from Obstruction Point in Olympic National Park today. I slept in longer than I thought I would this morning so I got a later start than I wanted, but I got there. It was a beautiful day and it was a great hike. I would recommend it to anyone wanting to hike this beautiful park.

The mountains have always been a magic place for me and those that know me know that I have always loved the mountains. Moving up here I took a bit of a break from them and have been enjoying the water quite a bit. Getting back into the mountains was a bit of a “coming home” for me. The sights, sounds, and the smell of the trees took me right back to a place inside that is quite special and I had not been in some time. The day even started out driving up Hurricane Ridge Rd. to the top, then taking a left onto the 8-mile long gravel road leading to the parking area at Obstruction Point. Woo-hoo! Off-roading! Damn… I sure miss my Jeep “Big Red”. It’s just not quite the same in my Ford Explorer.

Being away from it for a while made it all new again. This park is really quite a place and the mountains are just as spectacular as Colorado, but not as tall. The thing to remember is the vertical height. A 14,000 foot high mountain is tall no doubt, but when you start at 8,000 feet that gives you 6,000 feet of vertical. Here they start pretty much at sea level and Mt. Olympus is 7,980 feet tall. That is a pretty righteous vertical there.

Anyhoo I hiked a six mile loop, and it was quite a hike. It was a challenging trail in spots with loose rock and steep drop-offs, and the second leg from the Deer Park Trail down to Beaver Valley was pretty much straight down the side of a mountain. I DO mean “straight down”. I have never hiked a trail that steep, and it was a long way to get down to the valley. The pictures of the trail show what I hiked.

The wildflowers were incredible. There was a lot of color and some plants similar to what I have seen in CO, while others I have not. I saw some streams, and at one I stopped and heated up some lunch on my backpack stove. There were waterfalls, high mountain lakes, snow, goat tracks and bear poop on the trail… all of the things that make nature, well, nature.

I think I will let the pics speak for themselves. Click on them to see larger pictures. (Again, all things on this website are copyrighted and owned by me so please respect that.)