Saturday, June 30, 2012


I know, I know. I promised multiple blogs about my trip last week. But really, who has the time to write blogs during the week!  But here I am, ready to produce a blog about my trip - not that my first one produced much excitement.

Anyhow, aside from seeing old friends, the very best thing about my trip was hiking!  Since I had the dog, I had decided ahead of time that I would seek out some hikes. They started slowly, but by the time I hit Colorado I was a hiking fool.  A brief (or not so brief) run down of hikes.

My first hike was in Portland with my friend Steve and his kids. I wasn't up for too much extra car time and kids were in tow (including one who had spent the morning at a swim meet), so we decided to hike in Washington Park. It was pretty, sunny and low key.  Best part?  Kids who fought over holding the dog leash! I already posted the two kids and Otto together the other pictures aren't great.

Taking a break after some hard core city hiking.
A couple days later, frustrated and tired of driving, I decided to find some hiking on my own. I did a google search and came up with Malad Gorge State Park (Idaho). I thought some google posts commented gleefully on the hiking there, and maybe they did and I just never found the perfect hiking spot. My hike was a little lame. First, I was the ONLY person in the park for a good chunk of the time (and yes, it felt creepy), at one point I saw a truck with a ranger leaving the park, shortly afterwards I saw maroon sedan with three men entering the park (I'm not sure what they were doing, but it wasn't hiking and probably not taking in the view). Anyhow I found a scenic drive and just decided to walk that. There was this really cool gorge. At some parts it was extra narrow and extra deep and Otto did his best to give me a heart attack, running full speed up to the edges.

Perhaps you thought I was exaggerating when I said I was the only one in the park. (My car there at the far end) 

It's was pretty cool, even though I was walking on a road.

Here's where Otto tried to kill himself.

A small rodent popped it's head out of the hole, it was exciting. (You'll note the leash, added after the near death plunge above. )
This was how I knew to walk to the edge and look at the view - signs telling the drivers where to pull over. Also where creepy maroon car men parked.

Well, after this, things got serious. Colorado!  After a bad day in Wyoming on Wednesday, I drove two hours Thursday morning to Boulder. I drove straight to Chautauqua (which is right in the middle of Boulder) and hiked up to Royal Arch. It nearly killed the two of us. First of all, it was 90+ degrees, second of all, I parked in the wrong spot, so we walked an extra three miles or so, third of all I didn't really understand what we were getting into (it's a park in the middle of a city, how tough can it be?) so I didn't have enough water or any food, and fourth of all, the hike is essentially a mile long stair climb.  Oh, and fifth of all we got up to over 7000 feet and we're sea level mammals. Anyhow, it was a great hike - challenging and fun - but we were dragging on the way back. The last mile or so, I wasn't sure Otto was going to make it.

The royal arch!

You can't really see, but there is a creek there and Otto has decided he needs to hang out in the creek and the shade for a while.

Apres hike, standing up to drink water is much too challenging.

Next stop Golden, my friend Nicole has this mellow (pretty flat) but beautiful hike right outside her door. It ends in an insane view. Again, warm and 7500 ft!

Insane view.

Otto wondering why we don't live in a place with such an excellent morning walk!
Stay with me, two more to go. Steamboat Springs. I went for a hike with my friend Carol. Again, this hike was about 2 miles from her house. We took a friend of hers and 2 crazy labs that Otto didn't get at all (Addie and Maddie - not related).

One of the labs carried a HUGE stick the entire hike.

Carol and Otto!

Otto checking out the view.

Otto and the labs getting some refreshment.

Otto and shoe.

Completely gratuitous, but so cute!
 Okay, last real hike of the trip. I met up with my friend Jonathan in Salt Lake City and after we did some pull ups and dips (yep and BTW I did 49 pull ups and 36 ring dips), we headed out to hike from 8000 feet to 11,000 at the Steamboat ski area. Otto had to stay home because between the rocks in Colorado and the 100 degree sand in Utah, his poor paw pads were pretty blown and he needed some rest.  Can I just say holy crap. This hike was STRAIGHT UP A VERY STEEP HILL! Fortunately for me, Jonathan is recovering from a knee injury and we moved very slowly.
I took pictures of the hill, but they didn't really give a sense of how steep.  

Snow, it's been really dry in Utah and Colorado. I think typically there would be a lot more snow in this picture.   

Finger tip.
So that was hiking on my trip. It was awesome. I need to hike more. 

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