Sunday, July 11, 2004

She complained but endured

Yesterday Meredith and I went with two friends to hike on Mount Rainier. It was cool! It was rainy! It was just like the Pacific Northwest! Only not like the Pacific Northwest in July. We started with a failed attempt at some of the trails stemming from the Skyline Loop at Paradise, but the snow level was too low and we didn't have the proper equipment. We ended up on the Rampart Ridge trail, which is at a much lower altitude. It's amazing what a thousand or two thousand feet of altitude can do to change the local habitat -- I'd previously only been to Paradise, and the Longmire area, which is where the Rampart Ridge trail is, looks totally different -- weather, vegetation, everything. In any case it was really beautiful, a trail through a forest of very tall, very straight, leafless-until-the-top fir trees. The path was covered in generation upon generation of pine needles and was very soft. Meredith complained a little about the steepness of the trail but endured, Aspen told us all about the local flora and fauna, and Ben intrepidly hiked on, possibly regretting along with me that we didn't have the option of running it. It would have made one hell of a hill workout. It was fun though, and I'm glad we went, although I won't be running as far this afternoon as I had planned.

Chris wasn't able to go with us because he had friends in from out of town, which visit meant that I was up drinking until 3:30 the night before heading to Rainier, which decision made it difficult when 8:00 yesterday morning rolled around. This visit also meant that I was able to cap off my day of hiking with a meal at La Carta de Oaxaca, which was good but not quite as good as one would have hoped. They must have been having a tough night.

I finished Nickel and Dimed this morning and I may post comments to follow.


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