As promised-My Boxing Day Adventure

Mom’s sis is visiting from Texas, so we took her along on my adventure. Or was that the other way around? Either way…we went. ūüôā

Our first stop was a cemetery—what was that all about??? Well, Mom & her sis’ great-grandparents are buried there and Mom was born on their great-grandmother’s birthday and her sis was born on their great-grandfather’s birthday. Weird, huh?Mom's GG-fatherThey packed me in the car and we took a looooong ride out the Columbia Gorge–sis had never been there. Our first stop was Multnomah Falls. There’s been so much rain that a second waterfall appeared.

I thought that was pretty cool!

And on we went–all the way out to Hood River (about 60 miles east of Portland). I took a nap.

Fortunately we didn’t run into any snow, although it was up there in the hills.

Once we got there, they left me in the car with a couple of dehydrated chicken hearts while they ate pizza. Doesn’t sound fair, does it? Hood River

But there was a really good end to my adventure.A romp at 1000 Acres A little foot wettingAnd I didn’t even have to get a bath!A treat? For me?Treat, please?

Ponytail Falls

Hiking the falls in the Columbia Gorge is always fun and you never know what you’re going to see. Mom said we were going to stop at Horsetail Falls and I had my mind all made up that this is what we were going to see.Horse

Silly me. I guess I wasn’t listening and missed the “Falls” part…

and I sure didn’t see any horses.Horsetail FallsMr. N and I cavorted up the path through a series of switchbacks lined with basalt walls. basalt rock wallsWe soon reached Upper Horsetail Falls, also called Ponytail Falls. Ponytail FallsThe water fell into a pool (how I longed to take a dip) and the path went behind the falls!

Have you ever been behind a falls?

                                 Have you ever been behind a falls?

Mom loves to know all this stuff about why we were behind the falls, so she said I could tell you. In very simple terms (that’s me, by the way), a basalt lava flow buried a softer layer of rock and soil. Then water and winter ice removed the softer material below, creating a cavern of sorts. And there we were! In the cavern.

Moving along, we hiked to a spot that overlooked the Columbia RiverBarge going up the Columbia

And found a nice spot to take a rest.Overlook near Ponytail Falls

Hiking to Munra and Wahclella Falls-Part 2

After a romp at 1000 Acres

Mr. N and I drove into the Columbia Gorge to Wahclella Falls – our next hike. We have been fortunate to have fairly nice weather recently as winter hiking can present numerous challenges. Even so, it was quite muddy on the trail, but that didn’t bother me a bit! You see, I was already muddy (and a bit stinky from a roll in coyote skat) from our stop at 1000 Acres.

This lollipop loop trail is considered “easy” (300 foot elevation gain) and is only a 2-mile round trip. But the scenery¬† definitely made up for any ‘shortcomings’. ūüėÉ

Of course, Mr. N and I had to do some stump sitting along the way!On a stumpWe crossed a bridge so close to Munra Falls that I could reach out and touch the water!

looking back at Munra Falls

looking back at Munra Falls

We found a cave but Mom’s pictures didn’t turn out very well. But, this was another spot that could have been a cave (but wasn’t).hole in the mountainWe took one fork of the lollipop loop that rose high above Tanner Creek. It was pretty impressive!

I knew we were close to our destination–I could hear the falls.High above Tanner CreekSo don’t miss the rest of this hike. You’ll love it!

Fairy Falls

The other day Mom said “Sage, I know I just told everyone about your feast with Mr. N and I need to visit them. But, I just had a call and need to leave immediately to take care of the Popstar. Everyone in San Francisco is sick.” Yowzie–I was all set for fun ūüėí and she’s taking off on some magic carpet or something like that.

Then, several sleeps later, Dad puts me in the car and we went to that magic carpet place. There she was!! I was sooooo excited. And I know she was magic because everyone in SF was now well!!

The next day, she made it up to me. I never know what adventure we are going to have next, but this sounded like a good one. First, we stopped at 1000 acres and met Mr. N. We had to run, after all.WaitingThe wind was fierce, but that didn’t stop us! Run we did. After a quick stop for some lunch, we got to our destination and it was a ‘quick scramble up the rocks’ to Fairy Falls. Fairies?!?! I couldn’t wait.

Our trail led along Wahkeena Falls–“Wahkeena Creek falls this way and that, now a plunge, now a horsetail, now a cascade. It’s just beautiful.”

This was our trail. I told Mom she shouldn’t have been walking like she had had one too many, but she said all those switchbacks made it look that way. Whatever that means. Screen Shot 2015-01-22 at 5.15.25 PM

Anyway, up and up we went (elevation gain 889 feet).

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We got to an upper section of Wahkeena Falls about halfway to our destination.Wahkeena FallsWahkeena FallsOn we went and finally reached our destination–Fairy FallsFairy FallsIt WAS a bit magical (um, not like Mom’s carpet–but you know what I mean ūüėÄ).



A Lost Adventure

I always love an adventure so when Mom said we were going to Lacamas State Park with Mr. N., I was thrilled. There was a lake, waterfalls and lots of native Camas Lilies. Mom & I set out with Googled directions in hand and headed north to Camas, WA. (PeeEss: the town was named for the lily, not visa versa)

Sage: These are really pretty houses and I see the lake! Are we there?

Mom:¬†Uh, no, Sage. Something’s not right.¬†

¬†We went¬†around and around the streets with no way to get to the lake. Finally Mom pulled out her trusty phone (I’m glad it was smart! ūüôā ) We finally reached a parking lot and met Mr. N. Down a path we went, but, again, something wasn’t right. We popped into a nearby building; got directions and headed off to find the lilies.¬†Camas LilyBut first a trip around the lake. Mom told me it was formed, along with the Columbia Gorge, during the Missoula Floods. I guess that’s good ’cause¬†I was¬†already hot.

We trudged along. Up a hill. Down a hill. Up another.¬†We sure were doing a lot of lookin’ for those lilies!

Sage: What’s up, Mom?

Mom: We sorta¬†went the wrong way…I know they’re just over this hill.

And voilà! There they were. A whole field of them! Did you know their bulbs were considered very valuable by Native Americans? They ground them up and used them as a sweetener during special occasions. 

A field of liliesAll I cared about was my tongue was still hanging out. But never fear. Water was near.

Of course,¬†we HAD to see a waterfall. After all, what’s a hike in the Gorge or even the edge of the Gorge without a waterfall or two?¬†Pothole Waterfall

 There were more in the park, but would we get lost again?

We headed down a narrow trail that promised another waterfall ahead. Down a trail

We started going down and down. The trail got even narrower. Mr. N was ahead and I wanted to be up there with him.

Sage: Come on, Mom. Get the lead out! 

Mom: Slow down, Sage!¬†This path is steep, rocky and full of roots. And you’re on a leash and weigh 42 pounds.

Sage: Mom, why are you on your butt?

We did reach the bottom without further incident and there it was! (You sorta have to look through the trees).Lower Falls

Another short hike back up a hill took¬†us back to the lake, the parking lot and our car. It was one of the bestest adventures yet, even if we did get lost¬†a few times….

Muddy Monday – A Pot of Gold

You don’t see rainbows in Portland very often, especially such a full, double one. But the other day, there it was! And I heard there’s suppose to be a pot of gold at the end of it. That started me thinking…what if there’s a pot of M. U. D. at the end of it? That’s almost like gold. At least that’s what I think. I convinced Mom to go to 1000 Acres. I think she was feeling a little guilty for leaving me home while she and Dad went to San Francisco. And I wanted to take full advantage of the situation, right? Besides, what if there WAS a pot of gold (er, mud)?

We did a lot of walking and found a tree that was blown down in a recent wind. Sometimes those winds can be pretty fierce coming off the Columbia Gorge. I was just glad I wasn’t under it!

On we went.

And, there it was.

My favorite mud-hole!

See, I knew that rainbow meant something.

Mom *thinks* she’ll be saved from giving me a bath with a swim or so in one of the icy ponds. I found a really great stick that I encouraged her to throw in for me. She’s pretty good that way.

The shake off was gratifying–it got most of the dirt off me. Of course, I made sure Mom got her share. Good thing she’s a good sport!And, guess what? I found some more puddles!We don’t always go on this trail, but something was drawing me.I realized you just have to follow your rainbow! Thank you, Rainbow.