Tuesday, August 23, 2016

extraTufs not the most comfy for hiking

 got lucky and it didn't rain on me as we walked as i expected.  did the big loop out at North Bivouac but i was wearing those extratufs for second day and man are my feet sore. it actually cleared up a bit but i rested post walk and then the rain started.
 missed my opportunity to mow.  we shall see how tomorrow goes for that.
 i should have one more night off before i head to work. my next run my schedule will be set, hopefully that works out good for me.  i'm all for it.  i'll work every w-th-fr.  that will mean less long stretches off but if i take 3 days off that gives me a big stretch off i guess.
 mostly it will be good for dog classes.  hopefully, i can get some good dog training in this winter. i just have to fill out a form each schedule with my requested schedule.
 these are still from my nieces visit.  we really had fun.  always so great to see family. i live far from everyone.  i like my life here though but it is a sacrifice.  keep hoping someone will get the AK bug and come join me up here.  tough to even get visits though...so not much hope of that i guess.
 really need to see what i can get started planning for some remodel projects.  would like to do the kitchen by spring.  it's just so over due!!
 the pups are beat today....they didn't even have that evening wrestle session.  we did the 4 mile loop though, the big one.
 they did seem to pick up the scent of some moose before i saw them. impressive.  way back in the loop a mama and then a baby moose were spotted.
 almost back to the tank trail they spotted a hawk of some kind as well.  will have to check out those pics and see if i got got lucky...ok, i guess they didn't really spot the hawk though after i spotted it they did see it up in the tree. it was pretty close and checked us all out as well. a cool sighting for sure. i love random wildlife sightings like that.
 did see a lynx in Denali, a first for me.  it was just a glimpse of it as it ran off the road and into the brush.  no photos. years ago i saw a wolf out there.  i had driven all day and into the night.  since it was solstice.  at some point i decided to just close my eyes in the car in one of the pull outs for a few minutes. i woke to wolf standing in the middle of the road.  we made eye contact and then he booked off into the woods.
 these are at Independence Mine.  took them there after our walk.
 Blossom seems to be chill with sharing tennis ball time with the pups. they also seem to naturally take turns chasing down the ball.  they aren't insane with the tennis ball chasing but they do it and seem to be enjoying it.  they were good today about returning to me when called.  they were pulling a bit with the moose around. not sure they ever really saw the moose but they were catching a scent for sure.
 they don't destroy toys instead they seem set on destroying papers, throw rugs, sticks and shoes.  the carpet needs to be vacuumed often.
 did make it to the post to get a few WARIS bags mailed off.  went to post right by the house and the line was short...score...except soon after i arrived a big flash and the electric was off.  the computers were not coming right back up.  i ended up going down the road to the ace hardware store.
 kids found a patch of snow leftover from last winter.  soon we will have fresh snow.  maybe sooner than usual.  it really feels like fall already.  can't wait to make the drive north next week.  need to prep for that little journey. it will be cold nights for sure in the cabin.  hopefully, in the tent as well.  working sat night bites, would be better to get an early start on Sunday but we may end up stopping for the night in a campground closer to Glenallen rather than Paxson.
 want to get a new bed for the car.  less stinky.
 the greens are fast changing to yellows and reds.

 still some flowers out when my niece was here. do see an occasional one now as well, some late blooms.
 guess the body they found up the road was that of a 22 year old male. young.  so young.  no idea what happened there yet.  just reading a bit.  sounds like this guy had a history with drugs and has also been charged with stomping a wheelchair bound person nearly to death.  he also attacked another person the same night...2 years ago.  plead guilty. not much time to serve apparently.
 the body counts seem to keep adding up more and more each year.  it is the big city in Alaska.
 only 10 pm and it is dark out there.  dark, dark.  will have to factor that in when doing the drive this week.
 looks like Lochte the swimmer who probably got drunk, was an idiot and then tried to blame it on the locals is losing sponsors.  good.  he is the poster child of late for the ugly American abroad. how embarrassing.
 child bombers...kids it seems are being forced into bomb vests.  this group is beyond horrible..what a destructive, cruel, really there are no words to describe the utter brutality they inflict. not sure how to destroy them, nobody seems to be.  it does seem from reports that they are losing fighters and territory...but it only makes them more desperate and more brutal.
 we have our own issues...a machete yielding man is still out there after attacking a woman in a homeless camp.
 bowhead whales live in the far north. they love those icy cold temperatures. apparently, they are doing well with the warming conditions and less ice. more food and light penetration for them.  bowhead whales can live up to 200 years!! 200 years...that's crazy.  they also have a known population of hermaphrodites...whales with both sex organs...odd facts i guess.
 the increased ship traffic that will open up the arctic may end up becoming a factor though i suspect.  guesstimates of over 17,000 bowheads in the north.  so a seemingly healthy population for the time
 leftover flowers seen at Independence mine

 these are from the ride into camp in Denali
 hard to take pictures through the windows of the van, which were tinted.
 i tried anyway.
 he would lay out the specimens we found on the table and some times label them.  did come to get that even the experts in these areas still find some of the specimens baffling.  they are constantly finding new species, especially now that more and more dna testing can be done. stuff you thought was the same, really are a wee bit different.
 mushrooms and fungi in general have a role in tree life and plant life.  symbiotic in many cases.  some attach to roots.  also fungi breakdown stuff in the ecosystem.  we looked around an old pile of logs and you could see all the activity there of the fungi breaking down the wood.  life is a circle...we live, we die, we get broken down by fungi and insects.  ashes to ashes, dust to dust.
 ear cups..
 ready to crash...despite doing hardly anything today. slept in.  the pups were okay with that since it was raining this morning.  it can be tough to get motivated on rainy days...once i'm out there though its fine.  hopefully, no rain boots tomorrow though.

 puff balls.
 the squirrels were busy putting mushrooms in the trees around camp.  i'm sure we helped them out a bit with our collecting.
 an ear cup near camp.
 checking out the fungi.
 need to schedule Miss Ivy for her surgery. more major. i'm sure she will quickly forget about it like Tusker did and i'll have to work hard to "keep her quiet".

 just mushrooms.  i'm sure i'll have some shots for the calendar this year.  doesn't feel like i've been out there much.  for sure less of the big hikes.  debated today but figured it was raining everywhere.  may as well just get the miles in.
 our fun tattoo's.
 that first night  up there was already chilly...down in the 30's and that was fairly early in August still.  gonna be a chilly year i think.
 more puff balls.
 these are fresher.  folks like to eat these.  i'm not a fan of consuming mushrooms, but do enjoy taking photo's of them.

 these beautiful blue mushrooms are pretty amazing.  super tiny though, but when you see old rotting wood that takes on a blue hue...it's from these guys.
thankful for: A.  being healthy enough to enjoy long walks in the woods.  B. to have 3 sweet dogs in my world...and one cat, who hopefully will be buddies with all dogs soon.  C.  lazy days..i feel guilty but i also know it's  not everyone who is lucky enough to enjoy lazy days in their lives.