Thirsty Thursday: A Day in the Wilderness

Rambler: Beth

Drink at Hand: 2007 Scheid Reserve Chardonnay (top 5 favorites!)

Hey hey hey...Thirsty Thursday here again. Time to pour something yummy and make those weekend plans. This evening we'll recount a day spent in the wilderness form our backpacking trip to the Trinity Alps from way back at the beginning of the summer. Can't believe its fall already! 

A typical day in the backcountry starts with a sunrise shoot. 

Yep, that big bump toward the right is Mt Shasta. 

Then we eat prepare to breakfast. Really hard work. 

Massey maintains a constant guard over the camp perimeter.

Breakfast actually gets made...and we try to keep warm until the sun kicks in. 

Then if the trip planner (which is me 99% of the time) has selected a good spot, we have plenty of hiking and exploring to fill up the day. 

And then we relax a bit and wait for the sun to set. 

Days in the backcountry are pretty fantastic. Wish we could get more days out there, but the rarity fuels the stoke to go bigger the next time. 

Get out there and have your own wilderness-filled weekend!

Thirsty Thursday: Hammock with a View

Rambler: Beth

Drink at Hand: Trader Joe's Pomegranate Limeade 

Thirsty Thursday here again, time to pour something yummy and make those weekend plans! Its been a busy week, so I thought this photo is fitting. Special thanks to our gearhead backpacking buddy who had to buy the hammock and then carry it into the backcountry. It was comfy! I think Terry fell asleep in it shortly after this photo was snapped. 

Thirsty Thursday: Wandering through the Wilderness

Rambler: Beth

Drink at Hand: Cowgirl Winery Rose

A little late getting to Thirsty Thursday tonight, but better late than never! This week I'll share a couple images from our Memorial Day weekend backpacking trip in the Trinity Alps. To the three of us on that trip, this pairing of photos is a little funny.

It turns out that if you have a map but don't know where you actually are on that map, that map is worthless. Of course, if you use the compass in your pocket, you can catch a pretty good clue. A clue that three military-trained outdoorsy people holding that map should know. So, we ended up talking a four mile walk in the wrong direction down the trail in the first photo, which required a 4-mile climb with roughly 3,000' elevation gain back up said trail to get back to the campsite. The second photo was a lovely little scene roughly a half mile from our the direction we were supposed to go! But, the best parts of backpacking are the silly little things that happen along the way, and the stories those silly things give us. 

If you look closely, you can see the speed hikers up the trail from me. 

The infamous Deer Lake. Infamous in our heads anyway. 

We'll try not to get out there and get lost this weekend! And we weren't really "lost"...just misplaced ourselves for a little bit. 

Thirsty Thursday: Ventana Wilderness

Rambler: Beth

Drink at Hand: 2005 Bodegas Iberia 

Wow, Thirsty Thursday is here again, time to pour something yummy and make those weekend plans. Tonight's photos are from quite a while ago, but for some reason when I opened Aperture tonight to look for some photos to post, this set of photos opened. New Years Eve 2012. Beautiful day for a hike in the Ventana Wilderness...which ended in a trip to the pet ER for ripped pads on two of Massey's feet. But we had fun up until that point! 

The trails in the Ventana Wilderness are seemingly endless and so close for us. Hopefully we'll be exploring more of those trails again this spring and summer! Get out there and exploring your nearby wilderness this weekend! 

Thirsty Thursday: Happy Thanksgiving

Rambler: Terry Drink in Hand: Cabernet Sauvignon / Shiraz Wine Cube (a.k.a., a "wine juice box")

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone. I'm sure you're wondering why I (correction, we) are drinking a "wine juice box". Well, if you weren't, you are now. This year we decided to do Thanksgiving differently. Instead of the grilled smoked cajun turkey, sweet potato goodness, and cranberries to die for, we opted for a non-turkey dinner (at least maybe) trip to the Eastern Sierras in hopes of capturing views that let you appreciate the awe and the beauty of nature. We'll see if we can get something, but to hold you over, here's a couple of sunrise shots of the Hoover Wilderness trip. Eat an extra plate of goodness for us!

Thirsty Thursday: Choose Your Own Adventure

Rambler: Beth
Drink at Hand: Ancient Peaks Winery Renegade (two thumbs up for this yummy red blend)

It Thirsty Thursday once again...time to pour something yummy and make those weekend plans! Some weeks just make you look forward to those weekend adventures even more. The weekends when you get to choose your own adventure for the day. Head off on a trail and see what happens (and hope it doesn't snow!).


A short and sweet post tonight as we plot our adventure plan for the weekend. Time to pick a trail and see where it leads. Hope you get out there and find your own adventure this weekend, too!

Massey Monday: Wilderness Dog

I was cleaning up some photo projects from earlier this year and stumbled across a couple of Massey from our backpacking trip in the Kaiser Wilderness. She doesn't get off easy on these trips just because she's a dog...she has to carry her own weight!

Can't wait to get back out there in the backcountry again next summer. Maybe we'll drag Terry along next time.

Thirsty Thursday: George Lake

Rambler: Beth Drink at Hand: Ginger Ale (its my go-to airplane drink, don't know why!)

Howdy folks, time for another Thirsty Thursday, so pour something yummy and make those weekend plans. As you might have guessed from my "howdy folks" and airplane drink, I've been in Texas all week at a little weather nerd conference. Not going to lie, I am a weather nerd, so I was right at home. But just like Terry's post last week, there's something about being cooped up inside that makes you want to be way-the-heck outside. So this week, we'll review my little backpacking trip way out into the Kaiser Wilderness.

As you might remember from this post, Massey and I went for a little backpacking trip in the Kaiser Wilderness, with George Lake as our planned final destination. I picked Kaiser because it was on the west side of the Sierra Crest (hence a short drive) and I wanted a short-ish hike since we were going in Saturday and coming out Sunday. We picked up our wilderness permit in Huntington Lake at 8 am when the ranger station opened and headed straight to the trailhead...where it promptly started spitting rain. Grrr. I kept getting the backpack cinched up and ready to go while passing showers scooted overhead. A I go or do I bail? I really didn't want to hike 5 miles in the rain with a 45-lb pack on my back, but I also didn't want to give up potentially the last backpacking weekend of the year. Plus I had a brand new backpack that I was dying to use. So we went.

Massey loved the trail and her little backpack, too. We strolled along, dark clouds shadowing behind us, but bright blue skies ahead. My fingers were crossed. Massey chased pikas and I sucked in the scents of juniper and sun-warmed pine. Heaven. We topped out at Potter Pass and thunder started cracking as the wind picked up. I was nervous. But fortunately we dropped down the other side of the pass while the storm headed a different direction. On to the beautiful Lower Twin Lake, where I was surprised to see wildflowers still blooming. We quickly passed Upper Twin Lake and I noticed dark clouds coming again. The trail scrambles up a granite boulder mile to go to George Lake. It was a tough mile--lots of elevation gain--further stressed by the approaching storm. I found the first suitable camping site near the lake and tore into the backpack to dig out the tent pieces. I've never pitched a tent so fast! I threw the dog and my pack in the door and zipped the rainfly just as the first huge drops hit. All five of them. Maybe it was six. We sat out a pretty wicked lightning storm but we dodged the rain.

The rest of the weekend we had beautiful weather to enjoy the beauty of the place. The upper alpine lakes of the Sierra are so beautiful. Rocky, clear, pristine. Massey also enjoyed the water, jumping in every time possible. She didn't seem to mind that she was ruining the perfect mirrored reflections by rippling the surface of the water, so I had to act fast. We had a great time and can't wait to get back out into the woods again. Hopefully with Terry next time. Enjoy a few images from the weekend.

Its getting a little late in the season for backpacking, but if you want to head out to the Kaiser Wilderness next summer (or with a very warm sleeping bag), head east from Fresno toward Shaver Lake. Keeping going up the climbing mountain road to Huntington Lake. Here you'll find the ranger station where you can pick up a wilderness pass for the outing. Make sure you have your bear can...I didn't see any bears, but I saw signs of them.

Massey Monday: Spotted Mountain Goat

Massey loved her little trip to the Sierra backcountry. She was such a rockstar in the woods...chasing birds and pikas but never strayed to far and always came back. She loved scaling these granite rock formations, too. She would bound and scramble up them like a little spotted mountain goat! It's true, my dog is more athletic than me.