Trip to the Mountains!

Another blog post! This one only took me a week to write (in small increments between job-finding sessions, crafting sessions, and errand-running).

My Labor Day weekend encompassed a trip to the mountains, in which I camped at hubby’s favorite camping spot. You see, it was his birthday. He is now a quarter century old, for which I tease him and call him an old man. Really, he has hit an amazing milestone. It may sound silly, but thinking of all those who don’t make it that far for various reasons, I am really pleased and impressed.

So Friday night, after my final day at my most recent job, we went up the mountain. Normally this is a lovely trip, but it had been getting dark, and the large bumps in the road seemed larger, and the road longer. Not to mention the portion of the road that I most fear is worse in the dark. You see, there is this old rockslide that the road cuts through. As such, the side that is not a hill happens to be a dropoff. If you fall, you go very far and there are few trees of sufficient girth along the way to catch you.  There are large rocks in this area of the road, too, and the pitching and tossing made this acrophobe very afraid, indeed.

The place is beautiful. I can really see why people would want to go the extra distance to get to this location. It has a campground, but isn’t technically on Forest Service land, so we try to keep it on the down low… Sorry!

So we arrived at about 10pm Friday night, just in time to admire the multitude of stars, get stuff in the tent, visit for a bit, then go to bed. I had a full day of work that day, after all.

Saturday morning we were up a touch late.  It happened to be hubby’s birthday! Mamma-in-law and I went berry picking to add berries to the pancakes (alpine blueberries straight off the bush! Delish!). We had breakfast and everyone did their own respective activities. It was windy at the campground, so mamma-in-law, a brother-in-law and I went to a nearby rockslide and sat on the rocks. My brother-in-law (Let’s call him B1) read a book, Mamma-in-law did some homework, and I worked on some basketry. We were there for a good amount of time while hubby, dad-in-law, and brothers-in-law 2 and 3 (B2 and B3) went fishing. Something hubby likes a lot. We had a late lunch, chili and beans, and then figured out what else to do. Hubby wanted to fish at another nearby lake, so we went and he did that for a little bit with B2 and B3. Mamma-in-law and I followed and sat nearby watching the wildlife. It was nice. We then trekked down the path to cook dinner. Dinner for his birthday? Tortellini! He loves them things. After dinner, we had him open gifts, which was promptly followed by dessert: Pumpkin pie. His favorite pie!

Sunday was a very busy day. Hubby wanted to fish more, but at a lake where he thought they would be biting more. It was a good hike and climb down a cliff away, so Mamma-in-law, B1, and I opted out. We got hubby, B2, B3, and Dad-in-law packed with lunches and snacks and sent them on their way. We subsequently packed ourselves lunch and commenced our own hike. We hiked to a number of lakes on the mountainside (I want to guess it was about 4 miles, but I could be short. Lots of uphill). I waded in a lake and contemplated swimming to an island, but having not been lake-swimming in a long time, I chickened out and just waded around. Water was chilly but not really cold. It was surprisingly warm for an alpine lake, at least! After swimming I went and looked at a huge lake, near which we had our lunch. Afterwards, we hiked to the cliff that the men-folk (minus B1) had to go down to fish. We looked down and saw them, smiled, then began our hike back before the mosquitoes became swarming hordes. Despite heading back in decent time, I was bitten at least ten times on each arm. You see, I don’t have a light jacket to use and thus went without sleeves. Silly me. Hiked back to camp and changed out of my wet clothes, then worked on basketry some more while waiting for the guys.

Some family friends had arrived at the campground, and we visited a bit. They gave us a bunch of zucchinis from their garden, which we decided to cut in wedges and cook over the fire in a grill basket. To do that, we needed hot coals, so B1 started fire duty. After long, the other men-folk returned with 13 fish! Hubby caught 3 of them, B2 caught 4. I don’t know how the other six were split between B3 and Dad-in-law, but there were many little fish.

We started getting everything ready for evening, and all the menfolk decided to cut wood into smaller pieces. The were kind of competitive and showing off, like “this is how you do it.” Dad-in-law was splitting wood with one hand! There were many smaller pieces of wood once they were done. They are all pretty good at this splitting-wood thing.

Before dinner, an auntie brought over a cake and we celebrated three birthdays: Uncle’s, hubby’s, and a family friend’s. It was interesting trying to sing with all of their names! For dinner we had burgers, which we cooked over the campfire while singing camp songs. I should post some for you guys sometime.

Monday was pretty laid back. We made breakfast, packed up the dirty dishes and some of the food, and the decided what to do for the rest of the morning and afternoon. Hubby and I got in one of the boats and went out on the lake. He fished and I worked on a basket.

While rowing around looking for a good spot, one of the oars broke! We had to take the oars out of their locks and work together to row the boat around. After a couple of hours, hubby didn’t catch a fish, I didn’t finish the basket, but boy did we get exercise trying to row against the wind to get our little inflatable boat back!

We had to head out sooner than the fam, since hubby had to get up at 4:30am for work the next day. The ride back down was uneventful. The guys had worked on the road some over the weekend and it was easier (and less terrifying) to go past the drop0ff. All in all, a pleasant trip.

Next adventure? Stay tuned.

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About N B

Artist, critic, friend, and rambly-ponderer.
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