It's almost finals week so it's almost time to freak out. No, wait, it's Thanksgiving week and my kids and husband are all home making messes and I have to cook dinner in my disgusting run-down kitchen. And my kitchen gets more disgusting and run down every year and I'm probably going to die in this house because I can't ever afford to move.. OK, I take it back, I'm freaking out right now.
Yep, it's freak out time... sigh.. The motor is running.. what to do, what to do? Clearly I need to hike but don't dare use up too much energy that needs to be saved to study and cook and clean with. South Mountain is calling me, but I don't dare. I'm sure I'm not in shape to do a high elevation gain type of hike. But I bet is beautiful up there right now. The Olympics have a fresh dusting of snow and are gorgeous. I want to put my snowshoes on and go play in the snow!
I could go ride my bike around town and capture the depravity of Shelton with my camera, that's always a good way for me to entertain myself. But I've also got a freaking migraine or a tension headache.. not sure.. a migraine would be made worse by a bike ride, but a tension headache might be relieved. All I know for sure is that I don't dare take in any caffeine to cure this headache.
OK, OK... I'll take some aspirin and grab my camera and go for a bike ride. I'll figure out how to burn the turkey later. Maybe Haven Lake.. dunno.. I need a long hike, but not too long and the snow level looks low. The North Fork Skokomish could be nice, but ranger Fred Davis is there and I don't need and grief from him. Maybe good old Dry Creek from the North. The causeway bridge is under construction but I've read that it's open to pedestrains most of the time. I could go up dry creek to the little camp.. but I'm probably not in shape for that either. Maybe I'll go check out the washed up logging road that runs next to the Copper Creek and Shady Lane Nature trail trealheads.. I'm sure not in shape for Copper Creek and Shady Lane is too short and in the National Park so don't want to go there. I'm sure as hell not in shape for Mount Rose or Wagonwheel.
The wild-life gates are shut so I can't really reach the Upper S Fork Skok or the Church Creek Trail.. but there is always Pine lake. If there is not too much snow Pine lake would be good. But if' there is much snow Pine Lake will be a nightmare with all the bend over snow blanketed alder saplings on the side of the road. The Capitol Forest is out of the question.. there is no way in hell that I will pay $30 for a discovery pass just to hike on crap DNR land. I have free life-time federal passes and a free 5 year State parks pass but the freaking DNR wants me to pay to hike up their clear-cuts.. no fking way! Not in this life-time.
Lena Lake might be ok if I do it on a weekday.. it's the off season and the crowds will be down, so it will be ok to take my dog and if I have extra energy I can walk all the way around the lake. The Hamma Hamm is so close, I wish there were more trails in the Hamma Hamma.. Mildred lake and Putvin are really hard trails, Lena Lake is easy but too crowded. Then there is Jefferson Ridge, another hard trail, but not a killer like Putvin and Mildred. And that's it for the Hamma Hamma.
Going on up to the next river valley, there is the Duckabush. Just one real trail there, the Duckabush trail. I hate the Duckabush trail, it's creepy and horrible. It might be nice for backpacking, once you get beyond the logged over areas. But for day hiking I really don't like the Duck. Could be interesting to go see the fire damage though. I think it's just on the other side of Big Hump. There won't be anyone out there on a week-day... hmm.. I wonder just where the snow level is in the Olympics? Did I mention that the Duckabush trail is creepy?
I could hike up the closed road to the Upper S. fork Skok trail. That would not be too boring and it would be peaceful. No one seems to wander up in there once the wild-life gates are shut, it feels like I own that entire area once the gates are closed. It's just me and the brush pickers up there and the brush pickers mind their own damn business, so I don't mind them at all. Hell, they even dug my Jeep out of the snow once. The only problem with brush pickers is that their presence attracts ICE and I really hate ending my hike by being stopped by ICE out on the 23. But maybe ICE will stay home in Tacoma for the holidays.
It's really cold. If I'm lucky we will get a nice dump of snow here in town and then I can just strap my snow shoes on and head out the front door. I hope we get buried in snow at least once this winter so I can go 4-wheeling in town. I'm hoping for a nice rain on snow event in the middle of next week, one like we had in 2007. Flush all the turds right out of the Skokomish valley once and for all. Take out those engineered log jams too just to show them for the boondoggles that they are.