Monday, May 28, 2012

Frog Lake and Timberline

 It was our last snowshoe trip of the season in March.  We headed to Frog Lake on the SE side of Mt. Hood.  We stopped in Sandy to rent snowshoes for our housemate, Rich, who joined us on this adventure.

At the store in Sandy, I was asking about the probability of a lot of snowmobiles close to the lake.  The store clerk said a lot of snowmobiles start out from the sno park, but that we should not encounter too many on the smaller trail to the lake.  You can see from the tracks that this was quite the snowmobile destination.

Amy made a bench turned snow angel in the snow and Rich joined her for a needed break to take in the trees and the snow!

We had a leisurely stroll to the lake avoiding a few snowmobiles.  The lake was track free and we enjoyed a quiet lunch.

It was a good thing we got there when we did though, because shortly after our quiet lunch at the lake, the snowmobiles started driving across every inch of it!

The lunch was delicious and I took a moment to show off my just starting to show pregnant belly.

We took some time to build a giant snow woman.  She was pregnant also and Amy decided she needed three breasts.

We headed back to the trail through the deep snow, happy to have enjoyed the sun and the lake and shaking our heads at the snowmobiles who were out in the middle of the lake.  It was so warm and this is not Canada, people :-).  Fortunately we did not witness any ice cracking.

Amy did some diving on the way back.

Because it was a pretty short hike, we decided to stop at Timberline lodge.  I was the only one who had seen it in the winter.

It was great to see Mt. Hood in all it's glory and we poked around the lodge some.

They have a snow tunnel to enter and I was amazed how much of it get covered.

The snowdrifts were also quite impressive.  It was a fun end to the day.

Now on to spring wildflowers, waterfalls, and less snowy mountain views.  It was a great season of snowshoeing and we are looking forward to many more hikes between now and September when my baby girl arrives.  Amy's first hike was at five weeks old, so I am sure baby sister will not be far behind as September and October are often the prettiest times to get out!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Deep Snow and an Awesome Skiing Snow Woman

In February, Sarah, Amy, and I took a very long drive over Santiam Pass to a snow park we had not visited before- Ibeneck.  The snow was so deep!  We enjoyed blazing a trail through the woods in this very deep, somewhat wet and sticky snow.

It was pretty to be in the trees and the snow.  Amy tried to do some skiing but the skis got so buried in snow it was not very effective until we got onto a road that had ski ruts. 

We enjoyed our peaceful walk through the big trees even though blazing trail is never easy.  We kept the snowshoe a little shorter than usual to account for the effort.

When we stopped to cook lunch we made an awesome skiing snow woman.  Amy helped with the design and enjoyed this part of our day very much.

On the road, Amy enjoyed some skiing and heading back down to the car was so much easier.  We all had a great time exploring a new area and just being together in the snow covered woods.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Mt. Pisgah

This was not a 6 mile hike by design!  I just wanted to climb a small mountain to take in the view and test our stamina.  So we decided to head to Mt. Pisgah just outside of Eugene.

It was a beautiful hike up and there were lots of people to help us stay motivated on the hill.

Of course, we took lots of breaks for "sunbathing" and "deep breathes" as well as water and snacks.

It was fun to see the old orchard like trees and farms of Eugene below.  The sky was especially amazing.

When we got to the top, I had to show off my pregnant belly a little since it is more of a challenge to climb mountains while pregnant :-).

We took our time eating a hot lunch while other folks drooled at the smells and a dog tried to steal some.

We spent quite a bit of time soaking in the view from the top.

When we were finally ready to head back down we chose a different route- to head down the other side of the mountain and make a loop with the wildlife refuge below.

It was a bit steeper, more adventurous way down the mountain on the far side.

When we got to the bottom, we made some wrong turns and ended up quite lost.  We did have the river as a landmark but ended up doing a bit of bushwhacking and hiking a long way to get back to the wildlife refuge and parking lot.

We enjoyed the mud, the wildflowers, and the river views from the bottom but all of our endurance was tested by the steep climb followed by lost meandering for a total of six miles, which I believe is a new record for Amy, especially with such a climb involved!

She was a trooper, even though she was quite tired.  We finally got to our original intended destination, a pond with lily pads.  Sarah joked that this was the farthest she'd ever hiked to see lily pads.

It was a beautiful day and I was proud of all of us for our endurance.  We were a bit disappointed that we were unable to find the Next Adventure in Eugene, which has either moved or closed, but we had our chocolate ice cream and a long, sleepy drive home.