Saturday, January 6, 2018

New Year's Day Hike at Hog Lake

I got up early and drove the 30 minute drive west of our home to the parking area on BLM land at the north end of Hog Lake. Very little snow was on the ground; only about 1.5 to 2". It was icy in spots where hikers had gone before me. It was an overcast and misty morning. The waterfall at the north end was not totally frozen over nor was that end of the lake.
As I continued west from the mid part of the lake along a small rift in the basaltic rocks I saw these mouse or vole trails.
As I passed this little pond with interesting winter colors I approached a solitary ponderosa when I large silent bird glided out. I walked a little further not realizing the bird had landed again and at the next copse of trees two of the big Great Horned Owls glided out. At this point I knew I had stumbled upon a mated pair and needed to retrace my steps to leave them alone. They obviously had found the perfect place to raise and provide for their family.

Equipment Review for MICROspikes

When I first heard of MICROspikes (by Kahtoola) I thought they were talking about those cheap little things ( Spike Shoe Anti Slip Ice Gripper) you put over your shoes with tiny little spikes I had seen older people wear. Now, mind you, I have had a pair of Yaktrax for years and they work really well on slippery ice. So when I learned in my hiking group that MICROspikes were much more advanced gear for hiking I bought a pair and haven't looked back. I even climbed to the summit of Mt. Ruth in them. I only slipped twice that day and probably should have used actual crampons but was totally safe. Besides we were roped up and had ice axes for self arresting if the need arose.
On an icy/slushy recent hike I only slipped once going downhill. See the photo.
I highly recommend this product for anyone who hikes or walks in the winter. They will also work well for people who have a lot of property or animals to care of out in the country. They work perfectly well and bite deeply into pure ice...like my driveway and road this morning as I walked to get the mail!

Bald Eagles at Mineral Ridge 12/30/17

I had been wanting to get over to Idaho to check out the yearly gathering of bald eagles at Wold Lodge Bay and today was the day. The parking lot was pure ice and the trail was a combo of snow, slush and ice. My Microspikes were the perfect pieces of equipment for the conditions on the trail today. There were a couple of eagles in the trees by the parking lot but the trail looked inviting and likely would afford a higher vantage point. I hiked a total of about 3 miles and the top of the ridge is 2800+ feet I believe. Needless to say I was the only one on the trail but then again I was there pretty early. There are very spectacular views from the ridge of Lake Couer d' Alene. It was windy up at the top but not dangerously so. I saw a lot of eagles and ravens but didn't get many good photos. Well worth the trip however...

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

March Hike at Springer Lake, New Mexico

Hike Near Naches March 11th, 2017

The trails were too snowed in and I didn't have my snowshoes or micro spikes so I climbed up a rather steep southern exposed hill side. I found an elk jaw that is now in my collection.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Example of How Much Water Spokane Has Gotten.

So...we have lived here since 1983 and have never seen this much water. In the second image, in front of the two pine trees there has been a smallish pond in 2-3 years. Now look at it! Wow.

March 5th Morning Hike to My Secret/Favorite Spot!!!

It was wet and a little cold but I loved being out in it. In the one picture you can see the beaver lodge.