Wednesday, November 7, 2012

A bloody good day on the Dosewallips

Pluteus cervinus, also known as Pluteus atricapillus and commonly known as the deer shield[1] or the deer or fawn mushroom

When my alarm clock went off at 7:30 I sprung out of bed because today was hiking day.  First I had to get my little one off to school and I had to take a bath.  I was out the door by 8:45, we fell back an hour on Sunday, so I will be hiking in the dark from now on if I don’t hurry.  I drove my car to save gas; I’ve been doing that a lot lately.  I got caught behind a slow moving sewage truck near Hoodsport so I pulled over to use the free public flush toilets in Hoodsport but the sewer truck stopped there too and there was a lot of confusion between me and the sewer truck driver about where we both were going to park.  I used the bathroom and realized it was going to be a very bloody day, much bloodier than I expected it to be… sigh...

I had to stop again in Brinnon to use the bathroom and I bought coffee and a candy bar there.  The little store in Brinnon only gives one free creamer with a cup of coffee and wants 15 cents for each additional creamer.  The woman at the register was watching me to see how much creamer I used.  I’d rather just pay more for my cup of coffee than have to play games with the creamer.  I won’t be buying coffee there again until they change their policy.

I reached the trail at about 10am and I put Patches new coat on.  I just bought her this coat in the hopes that she won’t shiver so much this winter.  It was an expensive coat and I wish it had more insulation, but I guess it’s better than nothing and she probably won’t get shot by a hunter while wearing a red coat.

About 1/2 mile down the trail I saw something orange gleaming in the woods.  It was a pefectly formed yellow chanterelle.  This has been a bad mushroom year and it was the best yellow chanterelle I have found so far.  I took pictures of it and held it in my hand as I walked down the trail.  It was too pretty to let it get crushed in my pack.  I would eat it for lunch.

After I got on the trail and had gone about 1 mile I had to go to the bathroom again and there really was no good place to take cover and I had no choice but to go then and there.   I’ve never seen anyone on that trail on a weekday morning so I was not too worried about the lack of cover.  But just as I started to go I heard a hiker approaching fast.  He came up on me so fast that I had to pull up my pants before I was done peeing. 

What a god awful bloody mess.   Yes, of course the hiker was a male.  I zipped up my pants in front of him and said something about his timing.  He was an older gentleman and he took it in stride.  He asked if I was hiking to the campground and I said yes but first “I need to finish what I’m doing here” he took the hint and he kept on hiking.  After he left I finished my business and did my best to cover up the horrible mess I made in my hurry to get my pants up.
At that point I was tempted to end my hike.  My pants were filthy, I had really bad cramps and my hike had just begun.  Also I knew I was going to see that guy again. Did I really want to hike all day in dirty pants?  I had to walk another ½ mile before I got to the closest water so I could at least wash my hands.  There at the water I took some pain pills for the cramps and ate half a Scotch egg to cheer myself up.  I also put on the huge pad that I keep in my first aid kit.  That way I felt nice and dry even if my pants were not.
I decided to continue with my hike.  I reached the park boundary quickly and there was that guy again, he turned around at the boundary.  After I passed him I knew I had the trail to myself again.  I reached the National park camp ground pretty fast and I felt good when I was there because I’m in good hiking condition. 

At the camp ground I cooked lunch and a hot chocolate flavored coffee with my new caldera style cone cook set.  I also wandered around taking pictures of mushrooms and closed up ranger buildings.  I found some nice photogenic mushrooms there.  I noticed that over the summer a security camera was installed on the main ranger building. 

While I was in the campground two women hiked in with a dog.  I don’t know if they took their dog down the trail or not but I kind of hope they did.  I’m sick of some of the rules at ONP and the way they are enforced.  I follow all the rules and yet I get harassed and get parking tickets, while others hike right down the trial with their dogs... screw it... why the hell should I follow the rules if I’m going to be treated like a criminal either way?

Slime mold

Two other people passed me as I hiked out so I saw a total of 5 people.  I left the campground at about 2:30 thinking I would have plenty of time to make it out before dark.   I made it out 20 minutes after sunset and I almost had to hike by headlamp light.  On the way out I found that some damn animal had found all my buried mess.  So I reburied it even better than before.  

I looked for a geocache on the way out.  I could have been first to find but it was a micro in the woods and I hate micro caches in the woods.  I only spent a couple of minutes looking for it before I gave up.  While I was looking for it I touched a large snag and that caused it to fall down.  This was in the burned area.  That was a bit scary, luckily it did not fall on me or on Patches.
All in all it was a good day in spite of the very rough start.  A hot thermos full of Chai Mate tea was waiting for me in my car.  I sipped it in the dark and then made the long trek home in my car.

When I got home I found frightned Mormons in my driveway and I had to wait for them to clear off before I could park in my own driveway.  Then they hovered on my sidewalk wanting to talk to me  At least they obeyed the sign on my fence and did not harass my kids while I was gone.  What the heck were they thinking knocking on doors in the dark?  

The air in town near home smelled horrible thanks to the sawmill and woodsmoke from people heating their homes.  I sure do like to get my exercise in the mountain air.

 There was also a cute little possum in my back yard when I first got home.

11.5  miles with 3,600 feet elevation gain.
My 8.5 ounce kitchen and hot lunch at Dosewallips Camp

New camera on ranger station

Best yellow chanterelle I have found all year, I put it in my cook pot at lunch time

Dendralosia moss

Stupid signs with stupid rules keep sprouting up

This tree came crashing down when I touched it, it could have really hurt me or patches


The only good ranger station is a closed ranger station

Looking up

I came home to find Mormons in my front yard!

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