I’ve decided to switch over to blogspot for my blogging needs instead of WordPress. Seems like it’s more technologically savvy and better compatible with using GPS systems and downloading pictures etc. I’m in the process of transferring my content over to the new blog so here is the new address if you want to follow along….http://idyllway.blogspot.com/
Camping was a resounding success this Labor Day weekend. William Heise campground is a very nice park. I think it’s probably one of the nicest in the county. I like because of the strictly enforced 10pm quiet curfew. We did have screaming kids in the next site over and a site that had loud laughers but it was a holiday weekend and you gotta expect a certain amount of noise (but I really don’t like kids).
I was able to stay low carb eating all weekend. We had sausage and eggs every morning for breakfast, cold cuts wrapped in lettuce for lunch, hamburgers, hotdogs, and chili for dinners. Snacks were nuts, hummus, red bell peppers, etc. All that kept quite nicely in the cooler.
We didn’t do near the hiking I wanted to because it was SO hot! Not just hot but the humidity is what really made me feel sluggish and low energy.
We were able to test out some of our backpacking gear. We made coffee using the starbucks instant coffee Via packets and our JetBoil stove. That thing is a gem! I love it! Our sleeping bags were super toasty and my sleeping pads were very comfy. I have a foam one and a self inflating one because I have sleep issues. Dennis only has a foam one and he believes he should also get a self inflating pad because his back was hurting pretty good by the time we were done. The tent is fabulous. It has 2 doors so when I have to pee 15 times during the night, I don’t have to climb over Dennis.
I don’t think Pico enjoyed camping. He didn’t know what to do with all the extra unfamiliar stimuli. I was proud of his little guard dog abilities though. There were a million kids in the next site over and they were running amuck, screaming and being the Satan’s spawn that kids are. One of them thought it would be cool to run through our campsite and Pico took off after him like a bat out of hell. Chased that kid all the way back over to his campsite. I could hear them saying Bad dog, bad dog, and one kid says Did he bite you? No he didn’t but he sure scared the crap outta that kid. Love it. Bad kid, Bad kid….
Dennis and I worked well together. For the most part, accepting each other’s little quirks and just choosing to not be irritated. We did fine until the very end when we were packing up and Dennis was yelling at me to PULL PULL the stupid tarp. I yelled back OKAY OKAY I’M PULLING! Reminded us of the episode of Friends when they are trying to carry a couch up a staircase and Ross is yelling PIVOT PIVOT. LOL. Then when we got home Dennis got mad at me for scraping the truck mirror in some bushes. Oh well, can’t win them all. He has some OCD issues with packing/unpacking and also was a bit of a hygiene nazi. I asked him if my behavior was okay or if there was anything annoying that rubbed him the wrong way since I have been told I can be condescending :-p but he said he was okay with my behavior. The point is, I think we’ll be okay backpacking together as long as we keep our little issues from overlapping onto the other person.
Enjoy some pictures!
Dennis attempting to light a fire using dryer lint and a flint:
We went to New Mexico last week and had a very nice time. It was our first stay at a Bed and Breakfast: http://lazykranchbb.com/ There were some pros and cons to this first experience. First of all, we drove from San Diego to Flagstaff and stayed the night there. No hurry, just mosying along. We really liked Flagstaff. The next day we drove Flagstaff to Edgewood, NM- not alot of interesting scenery. There were some cool rocks and mountains along the way but mainly just flat desert. I was expecting more I guess! We got to the B&B and Pico immediately took a giant dump on the owner’s living room floor (wood). She seemed okay with it at first and we expressed our extreme humiliation and were very apologetic. We had a 2 bedroom cabin all to ourselves on the back portion of the property so very secluded and relaxing. The next morning we made our way up to the main house for breakfast. The owner was very upset with us because she felt that Pico had stained her wood floor with his poop. She had to point it out to me because I couldn’t find the stain on my own- looked like a regular wood floor to me! Hmmmm. We offered a damage fee and nothing was decided upon so we went about eating kind of an awkward breakfast. She did join us for coffee though and told us all about New Mexico. That’s one thing we wouldn’t have gotten at a regular hotel- lots of information about the area. That first day we went to the top of Sandia Peak (11,000 feet). Views were spectacular but we didn’t stay long because Dennis felt woozy from the altitude. Then we went into Albuquerque and messed around. We didn’t feel a good connection with Albuquerque. The next day we went into Santa Fe and found it to be more our style although the B&B owner had told us that fancy artsy fartsy people lived there. I felt pretty comfortable in Santa Fe. Seemed alot like La Jolla or Del Mar to me. The jewelry was too expensive though so I didn’t get any neat turqoise pieces. When we got back, the B&B owner had found a little dog crap behind the cabin table and left us a note to keep a closer eye on Pico. UGH. Really, Pico is not an inside pooper normally, I promise. Our last day we went into Old Town and walked around for awhile and then went out in search of the petroglyphs. Had a hard time finding them and ended up at the open space preserve instead where some very nice but gungho volunteers tried to convince us to move to NM. Dennis didn’t want to see petroglyphs after that so we headed back. I think he was ready to go back to San Diego! Me too. We ended up giving the B&B owner $80 for Pico’s pooping fiasco. We stayed in Flagstaff again on the way back. It was an enjoyable, relaxing vacation however I’m not sure if I’ll ever go back to New Mexico. It’s called the Land of Enchantment but I don’t feel like it was very enchanting. It just didn’t sit right with me somehow. Maybe it was just the pooping drama that made it weird.
Next adventure- camping for the first time in almost 30 years!
We walked 10 miles out at Mt. Laguna yesterday. Wow, it’s beautiful up there! Alot more pine trees than I was expecting. We started at an unknown trail head. Originally we were going to start at the Penny Pines Trailhead but Dennis felt uncomfortable leaving the truck on the shoulder of the road so he wanted to park at Laguna Campground. Well we couldn’t figure out where the parking was or where we were supposed to pay the day use fee so we ended up at a random trailhead that I had seen further down the road. So the start was a little irritating. We need to get our starting points figured out a little better. We walked about 4 miles on the Pacific Crest Trail and it was so cool because we got to see where the trees stopped and the Anza Borrego desert began. Great desert veiws! We saw trash, toilet paper, and a pair of thong underwear too. Kind of gross. Then we actually ended up at the Penny Pines Trailhead because the PCT connected to the Big Laguna Trail. We walked along that for about 6 miles. Nice wooded areas, easy trail, past Big Laguna Lake. It got pretty hot the last few miles though and we ended up carrying Pico about half the way. I was worried we wouldn’t be able to find the truck again because Big Laguna Trail kept branching off into all these little offshoot trails but Dennis has pretty good navigation skills and we made it back. We were hot and wiped out and that truck was a vision! We stopped at the Laguna store to get gatorade on the way out because we both drank all our water (2 liters each). I wish they had slurpees! This little store is where we will stop to get snacks next April when we walk Section A of the PCT (110 miles from Campo to Warner Springs).
Here’s some pictures:
Saturday we really went after the adventure. We drove out to Warner Springs to find the Pacific Crest Trail and it was interesting just trying to find the thing! Dennis was grouchy and irritated because he was so tired. We did these hikes right after he got done working the graveyard shifts which is why the early start times. Then he would go home and sleep. Anyway, this last day he was REALLY tired and all this hiking and not sleeping was getting him down. We finally found the PCT markers- very obscure and difficult to find. Then we parked in a turn-out on the side of the road with our adventure pass posted in the windshield. Off we went! I was thrilled and excited to be out on the PCT for the first time! No marine layer out here though so things got very toasty very fast. We originally planned to walk 4 miles out and 4 back but we had to turn around at 3.5 miles because the trail was so overgrown we couldn’t get through. So the total ended up being 7 miles and it took us 3.5 hours. Pico made it halfway and then we had to carry him back because it was so frickin HOT. We had to stop every few minutes to rest it was so hot. The last 1/2 mile seemed to take FOREVER. When we were done, we saw the temp was 90 degrees! We stopped at Don’s market in Julian and got ice cold drinks. So good. Here’s some pictures- we (meaning I) look pretty delirious from the heat so warning!