dog love · Finding joy · Summer

Solstice

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Where the past lets go
and becomes the future;
the place of caught breath. …
Happy Solstice ♡

Before I really dig in to this post I need to mention a couple things: First, I am a visual learner. I navigate the world through signs, photos and visual clues. I’m better with landmarks than maps, better with right and left, than I am with east or west … Second, I had a lousy night of sleep so I started the day annoyed and impatient.

Breathe, Bonnie, breathe …

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The signage TO this trail ( High Rock Lookout) from Ashford is abysmal. The signage from Skate Creek Rd is also a disaster. But the worst thing one can ever do is trust Waze. Good lord. Below is where the Waze directions took me. This trail continued to narrow and the potholes got deeper. I almost bottomed out. Had I taken my Hybrid instead of Kelly’s Element I would still be out there. Stuck, very literally in the middle of nowhere. I was six miles in before I could make an attempt to turn around. Stupid Waze. Next time I say I’m going somewhere new, please remind me not to trust Waze. Please.
I did eventually reach the trailhead. I had to stop and give Yoda a pee break during our 3.5 hour odyssey. One for me, too. Thank god for Kula Cloth.
This is a hike I chose because it is short and steep. I did my 14 miles last week in hot sun, I looked forward to a cool, short climb today. There was a mist that hung in the air and gave everything an ethereal feel. If there were ghosts they might have blended in nicely. It was cooler than I had originally planned for so I grabbed a sweatshirt for the hike up. Bear Grass lined the bottom of the trail like we had an audience. It was a full lung, full heart kind of day. The trail is in good shape all the way up to boulder scramble.

The flowers are changing with the elevation. The lilies will be bursting soon. The rain kept them mostly shy, and some were almost translucent with the spring soaking. Rather than an explosion, it is more like a painters  color palette as you try to forget about the steep climb. It’s not ” mailbox steep” but steep enough to be respectable.

There are actually two benches on this trail, both prior to the well placed 1 mile marker. If it were me I would have found a spot for one of those benches after that point but no one asked me. In the absence of said bench, the flora provided many an opportunity to snap photos.

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Yoda hikes these trails “like a boss”. He leads, actually pulls, me along as if his body doesn’t register a gain in elevation. Oh, but mine does. Our words of the day were “slow down” and “nope” ( when he started sniffing off trail).

He was a bit out of sorts at the lookout. So much so that he actually approached the two women ahead of us that were enjoying the (non) view. If you know Yoda, you know that isn’t really how he operates. They were kind enough to snap a couple photos for me.

 

I signed the register and took advantage of a nice flat surface to sit on to take a break. Yoda was tentative at best exploring the lookout, but plowed down the trail when he realized we were heading back to the car. I let him lead. Dangerous, but I lived to tell about it, so there’s that.

Base Camp Grill is open in Ashford so I stopped for a root beer and a cheeseburger. I ordered one for Yoda too. The young man at the grill was awesome and when he brought it over, made sure to tell me he even squeezed out all the grease. Cute. Yoda ate it ss fast as I could give him pieces. (just a plain patty, but he loved every single morsel )

He earned it ♡

A lovely day with my boy. I’ll go back someday for the view but today was of the “necessary and cathartic” variety. The day: a curse then a blessing.

Strong finish.

Just how it ought to be.

(This was his drowned rat look 🙂 )

3 thoughts on “Solstice

  1. I love seeing that little Yoda on the trail. I’m sorry the weather wasn’t stellar, although there is certainly much to be said of mist. Letting go of expectations. My current guests from Illinois went to Rainier; I think it was socked in there too. I feel lucky to have chosen a northwest hike. The featured photo is gorgeous!

    Liked by 1 person

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