Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Dosewallips, Fall colors. Miniature tour.

For this week’s hike I wanted to get out and see some fall colors and maybe get some mushrooms.  The Dosewallips is a good place for fall colors, but no good for mushrooms.  So it would be just fall colors and no mushrooms today.

Just past Hoodsport I realized that I had left my lunch in the fridge.  I stopped at the Brinnon store to buy food.  I walked out with a bag of sunflower seeds, two pepperoni sticks, an Uno bar and a bag of gummy bears for $9.05.

I was able to drive all the way to the washout in my little car.  The spot one mile before the washout where the culvert washes out nearly every year was a little rough, but my car sits extremely low.   Most people will be able to fly right over that spot.  There were a few more potholes on the road than usual and I hit a couple of them a little bit too hard. 

Hunters were cruising up and down the road looking for something to kill.  Old men looking for one last kill before they die.  I wish some of them would put more thought into their legacy and the planet they are leaving behind.

I started my hike at about 10am.  The morning fog had just lifted and the weather was sunny.  The air was warm for a late October day.  The maple trees were showing lots of color but, not for much longer.
I took a lot of picture using the tilt shift setting on my new camera.  I’m having so much fun playing with all of the silly settings on my new camera.  I had intended to take my older lighter camera hiking and save my new camera for work in town, but that’s now how it’s working out at all.

I was feeling tired, so I ate my bag of gummy worms while I trudged up the hill next to Dosewallips falls.
At the old car campground I heated water for a cup of instant coffee with cocoa, Nido and sugar.  I also ate half of my sunflower seeds.  I wandered around taking pictures of old picnic tables and stuff before I headed back out.

The coffee and lunch break really energized me.  I felt very good at the start of my hike out and I had more fun taking pictures.  By the time I reached Elkhorn camp I was a bit tired again so I stopped there, wandered around a bit and had a second cup of coffee.  The days are getting short, but I was not worried about having to hike out in the dark.  I was having too much fun out in the woods.  I did not get to hike nearly as much as I wanted to this year with my mother’s death and my husband’s failing health.
I finished my hike at about 6:30 pm, maybe a bit later.

11 miles with 1,100 feet elevation gain

The washout in miniature

Tricholoma sp. is my guess

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Big Creek to Lower Ellinor

I wanted to get up high into the old growth fast, so I started and the highest access point that is still on a paved road.  This access point enters the trail system just before the obscenely named "Dick's Rock".  Okay maybe it's not meant to be obscene, maybe it's just my mind in the gutter.

 I had to laugh when one couple claimed to climb Mount Ellinor from Big Creek, but omitted the fact that they took the same short cut rather than starting at the Big Creek trail head.  I was on the trail the same day and time and I never saw their car, so I knew better.  They fessed up with a bit of prodding.  Then they went on to post a track log to a secret spot that has the entire Mount Rose trail crew pissed off at them.

Anyway, I started my hike at about 9am.  The hike was uneventful other than the fall colors.   I hiked up to just past the benches on the lower trail that are near a big rock that is covered with Lobaria linata.  I was mostly off trail for the trip back to the connector trail and my body is letting me know about that today.

I like to wander just off the trails.  One only needs to go a few feet off the trails to discover interesting and sometimes secret things.

I had my lunch back down at the overlook.  My hike out was bit slow due to my finding lots of things that like to grow in the fall.  I was lucky and I did not get rained on at all.  The weather forecast made it seem like there was a very good chance of rain.

6 miles with 2,300 feet elevation gain and a fair amount of off trail wandering.


Trail head

Chanterelles right next to the Staircase Ranger Station

Lower Ellinor trail

Deformed mushroom, maybe with a hypomyces infection

Salt and Pepper Russula, poison

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Totem Lake

I've been busy cleaning my mother's condo.  I've not thrown away anything that was not junk.  I'm just cleaning and organizing stuff.  I took one load of too good to toss stuff to Value Village and then I sobbed.  Next week I may go back and shampoo the carpet.  I'm taking my time cleaning up, there is no hurry, probate takes forever.

While I'm there I am exploring.  I used to go exploring when I would stay there with my mother.  But it was only on this trip that I found the Cross Kirkland trail.  The trail looks like it might be new.  I don't much like walking in the Totem Lake area as the exhaust fumes are too much for me.  I never liked the level of exhaust fumes there and now, I'm cleaning those fumes from my my mother's condo.  They gather on every ledge, it's not normal dust.  It's weird pollution dust mixed with cigarette smoke.

2.5 miles with maybe 50 feet elevation gain.