Forest Road Hike

2021 Hike # ; 50

Hike Distance: 7.8 miles

Elevation Gain: 869 feet

Yearly Hike Distance: 402.3 miles

Yearly Elevation Gain: 48,451 feet

Yeah, it’s been a while. I will admit that we’ve slowed down a bit compared to previous years, and much has been happening in our lives. Hopefully, things will be getting back to some form of normalcy as early as this summer, and we actually have a sense that we’ll be able to rise out of this darkness!

We’ve planned a couple of “vacations”, which means anything away from our home. We’re ready to cancel, if necessary, but are looking forward to anything that isn’t a “Forest Road”! Haha We won’t be visiting any restaurants during these vacations, except for possibly take-outs, and will likely bring some food with us? We’ll also be bringing our masks and wearing them in public, unless the “All Clear!” is broadcast. Wishing you all better times ahead! 🙂

On to today’s hike. What can you say about this forest road? Well, not much different from the walking point of view. Although, there were a large number of downed trees that we needed to trim in order to get past them. On the other hand, this wasn’t a good hike for me (but my wife was okay). You see, somewhere about halfway through the hike I started to get horrible allergy symptoms.

You may say this isn’t a big deal, but for me I haven’t had significant allergy symptoms for a about two decades! I took allergy drops for about 4-5 years, about 25 years ago, and they worked well for me. Everything was fantastic until today, and then my body decided it didn’t like the deciduous tree pollen, and I mean in a big way. 😦 My eyes were swollen and my nose was running constantly. My handkerchiefs were saturated in minutes and I was basically wiping and blowing my nose with a wet towel. I had constant sneezing fits that were violent and wracked my body.

On the way back the rain intensified, along with a bout of hail, and it only made things worse. I was so grateful to get back to the car so I could use dry kleenex to blow my nose. As I sit here writing this report my allergy symptoms have abated, but I’m left with the fear of going back out hiking. I can see that in my future there will be further visits to the ENT doctor for another round of allergy drops, but only after the pandemic!

Forest Road Hike

2021 Hike # ; 31

Hike Distance: 8.5 miles

Elevation Gain: 1137 feet

Yearly Hike Distance: 246.0 miles

Yearly Elevation Gain: 28610 feet

As I sit here writing this trip report I’m wondering when we’ll be able to go on our next hike. The temperatures where we live have finally gone above freezing but there is about 14-16 inches of snow that need to melt! It’s very infrequent for this much snow to fall in one storm where we live, in the Pacific Northwest, but alas it has happened. 😦

This was our last hike before the storm, and it was a beautiful day. This was another typical road, that we’ve hiked before, but it still offered much beauty and plenty of fresh cool air. 🙂 We only had one expansive view, for which I included a photo. We also took notice of all the wind damage that has occurred so far this winter. Nothing was impassable and was easily stepped over or avoided.

While I’m still enjoying walking these forest roads, there appears to be some hope of going back to some normal trails this summer, or later? We’ll have to see how the speed of Covid19 vaccination continues, but I’m hopeful of things improving this Summer or perhaps Fall? My wife and I both agree that we require a vaccine in order to feel safe around other people, especially at our age and with our medical issues. We’ll see what happens?

Forest Road Hike

2021 Hike # ; 16

Hike Distance: 8.7 miles

Elevation Gain: 893 feet

Yearly Hike Distance: 130.0 miles

Yearly Elevation Gain: 15,121 feet

Well, I feel like I’m dropping the ball for writing up our hiking experiences and providing original content in this blog. This pandemic has severally restricted the places we are willing to go for hikes. Our hikes are so similar that you could summarize them as simply walking roads that have minimal variety. We seldom see people, but when we do it’s not the best experience. I’m so frightened of meeting other people that we don’t spend much time talking and give the impression we’re not interested. We are courteous and kind but just not interested in breathing the same air, at least until we get vaccinated and there is herd immunity. Of course, it’s still very nice to get out and get some fresh air, but it’s always in the back of our minds that things aren’t really safe in the real world. 😦

Today’s hike was much like our other forest road hike, except we had another run in with some wild horses. I didn’t see them until my wife mentioned they were there. Once I looked up it was obvious these two horses were not happy with us. They snorted and came around in front of us in an aggressive upright position. I really wasn’t sure if they would stop, and was a bit concerned. Thankfully, our defusing the situation came quickly, as we turned around and walked away. I did turn to get a quick photo, which I include below.

The other thing I’m now doing is to carry my Olympus camera with me on the hikes. My smartphone takes great photos, but they’re just not as pleasing and detailed as the Olympus. It just means I have to carry another two pounds of gear with me, which can be a pain when my body is having issues.

The one thing my Olympus camera is good for is image stabilization, and I can hold it for 1+ seconds without getting photo blur! In fact, I can get nice silky water flowing effects without any blur, which is fantastic. I’ve also included a photo of a small stream that contains this effect.

Forest Road Hike

2021 Hike # ; 6

Hike Distance: 9.3 miles

Elevation Gain: 1026 feet

Yearly Hike Distance: 48.7 miles

Yearly Elevation Gain: 5,653 feet

A very nice day to be out in the fresh air! We were feeling pretty good so we extended the hike out past 9 miles. :0 We’ve been going to this area frequently since it’s close to home, and we’ve been getting out on the late side.

We didn’t see any animals, or people, today. A quiet day and plenty of solitude, which we prefer. It’s tough to go out and feel so good when we know that the pandemic is raging on. 😦 Well, we’ll be keeping our distance from people until we can receive the vaccines.

We’ve started to think about where we might want to go, on a hiking vacation, when the pandemic becomes just a horrible memory. It just gives us something to look forward to, even if it isn’t in the near future.

I did look into the status of permits at the PCTA website, and was surprised to see that they would be issued for 2021! Sadly, we have no plans to participate in any Pacific Crest Trail activities, in 2021, but might enjoy watching others attempt this journey?

Take care and be safe!

Forest Road Hike

2021 Hike # ; 4

Hike Distance: 7.8 miles

Elevation Gain: 881 feet

Yearly Hike Distance: 31.1 miles

Yearly Elevation Gain: 3846 feet

Quite a bit of rain today, and the roads are being damaged from the runoff. Not much exciting about this hike, except that we got out and exercised.

The big deal today was that the road veered around a corner, and we looked up to see a herd of 4 elk!!! Unfortunately, they ran off before I could get my phone out to take a photo. 😦 And then, we walked further, only to see a deer on the road, and it also darted away from us. It really sucks to see such wonderful wildlife and have no proof of it. Well, it’s burned into our minds.

Hiking the circumference of the earth (25,000 miles)!