Monday, December 26, 2011

Summer Back in Washington

We had a few other summer adventures. Justin's mom moved to the Olympic Peninsula a few years ago. We don't get over there too often, but made a trip to see her shortly after we moved back. She currently lives in Ocean Shores and what a beautiful place.

Beach combing
Looking for marine life. We did see a seal but were unable to capture a photo.

Weatherwax Park

We had a nice time visiting, checking out some local hot spots and seeing Keitha's library.

My good friend Heather and her family made a visit to the US in early August. Heather is the dear friend I moved to Washington with back in 2003. She was my roommate for as long as she was living in WA and she was the maid of honor at our wedding. She moved to Australia the summer of 2007 to be with her now husband and they welcomed sweet baby Savannah in May. The visit was too short but it so much fun to see see Heather and her family.

One of the things Justin and I really missed while living in PA was the beautiful mountains and lakes of Washington. We tried a few hikes there but they paled in comparison to the PNW. With work schedules and getting settled, we were only able to make 1 backpack trip, but what a doozy. I am always amazed at the hoops we have to go through to be legal when in the great outdoors (dogs vs no dogs, parking permit, park pass, overnight permit, etc. . .) but we persevered and had a nice overnighter in the North Cascades. We hiked the Thunder Creek Trail in the morning and then headed up to the Fourth of July Pass for the afternoon and overnight. As usual I struggled with the steep climb, but its always worth it once we make camp. About an hour into the hike Justin and I were both stung by wasps. I got stung on my finger and upper arm, Justin got stung on his arm. Thank goodness Scout wasn't stung and neither of us are allergic, but holy smokes. My hand swelled and got really stiff, losing range of motion in several joints. Neither of us wanted to leave but I became increasingly concerned. I hadn't been stung in a long time and never by a wasp so I didn't know what other medical concerns I could look forward to. I trudged along for the next couple of hours with my hand raised over my head to try and decrease the swelling without much benefit. It became less bothersome as the weekend progressed, but for the next 2 weeks I experienced redness and swelling. And oh the itchiness! It was unbearable at times. When at home I could treat it with caladryl but at work I have to wash my hands like 100 times a day so topical medicine wouldn't do. But look at the scenery! Totally worth it.

Camp and a tired dog

My guys relaxing

Time to cool off

The trailhead after the hike

Justin thought he got a nice tan, turns out it was just dirt.

Where did you go this summer? Any recommendations for moderate overnight backpacking trips?

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