Tuesday, March 26, 2013

a day at eagle river nature center...

 woke up coughing my brains out, spitting out crap and grabbing my inhalers. once i got that calmed down i went back to bed for an hour nap.  upon awakening, i had a new start and the skies were clearing so i decided to go to the nature center. turned out to be a beautiful day.  in retrospect i shouldn't have listened to the nice guy grooming trails who said they should be packed down enough and i wouldn't need my snowshoes.  it was a bit more of a workout, but i survived.  the snowshoes, which are always in my car this time of year, would have been nice.
 you have to pay a $5 fee at the center, it's not included in your state park pass.  as it turns out i had left my loose bills at home and only had a $20.  after waiting to see if anyone else came by that might have change. i decided to just put the $20 in the slot and consider it a $15 donation.  there are worse things.  i'd already driven out there and it's a ways out the road. no doubt many people go there and use the place and don't pay...my good deed for the day.  ran into just a few folks out there and everyone was super nice.  chatted with them all for a few minutes.
the river is beautiful in any season.
 the center's cabin had lots of icicles hanging from the roof.  probably not good for the roof, but it looks cool to see a wood cabin with all the icicles. they have classes and stuff at the center.  most of the times i go there the place is open and there are volunteers inside, one of the reasons i hadn't worried about not having anything but the $20 on me.  live and learn.
 lots of trails out there and the guy was already hard at it getting them all packed down.  i'm sure this weekend there will be a lot of traffic out there.  the second yurt appeared to be available. they have a few yurts for rent.  haven't done much winter camping.  would for sure want to not do that solo.  
 blossom joined me and rio stayed home on the couch.  happy i made that choice. i've taken rio out there, but not in deepish snow like this.  blossom chased her frisbee almost the entire way and she is pretty beat.  a sleepy dog is always a great sign.  she made new friends out there.  sweet older dog, fun younger dog, a few folks from maine playing hookie from a convention they are at in town. today was a good day to do that.  would hate to have flown all this way and then sat inside listening to lectures on such an amazing day.  the temperatures were nice.
 i was happy to be on my own.  my cough isn't as bad as i've had it before, but hacking and spitting isn't really something i like to share with others. besides, i'd hate to get anyone else sick with this bug.
 still hoping i can get a drive in to seward or independence mine tomorrow.  i go back to work on thursday.  i did finally set up an appointment for a doctor.  tired of using my obgyn for all my needs.  with my reactive airway stuff it would be nice to have someone regular.  i've gone to the employee health the past years, but now they've decided to charge for that service.  i called and the office visit for a nurse practitioner would be $200  or somewhere near that.  better to establish myself in a regular practice and leave employee health for work related crap.
 didn't see any moose or eagles out there today.  was surprised.  in the summers there is generally a lot of bear activity out there.  the river is full of salmon then.  this trail also goes all the way across and over to girdwood area via the crow pass trail.  i've only done part way from the other side. there is a river crossing at some point that i'm nervous of and also another area that concerns me.  i'd like to meander both ends again, but i don't really feel the need to do the connection.  my backpacking days are limited...i prefer the comforts of kayaks and cars to haul my stuff.
 was laughing as blossom gets "snow blind" out there. her face gets so coated with snow she seems to be unable to see.  not to worry, it's only temporary.
 i could hear all of her little snow balls clunking together as she moved.  it always cracks me up!
 when she gets tired she starts getting under the tree boughs and bites off twigs to make herself a little burrow under there.  i let her rest and then we are off again.  today i needed the rest as well.  am interested to see how my procedure changes my walking.  if it works i'll have to think about getting my other leg done. that is now scheduled for april 8th.  i'll have to plan some crap to get worked on since my deductible will be met this year.  should schedule a colonoscopy...sounds like so much fun! my grandmother did pass of colon cancer so it's for sure something i shouldn't ignore.
 liked how a few of the black and whites came out...of course, i always love the black and whites.  thanks to tanya for getting me hooked on it.  she sent me to round island with a few rolls of black and white film.  i always enjoyed taking black and whites in the college class i took on photography, but you just forget about it.
 today was pretty in colour and in black and white.  tried to post a few to facebook but it wasn't working.  will try later.
working on some of that jello i made the other day. not that my stomach feels bad, just that my throat has been totally sore and the jello feels good on it. figuring i'll turn in early.   sleep and then use all my energy for the daily walk. i think it's good for my lungs to get out there walking.  deep breaths, fresh air, the cold gets the nose running and the sinuses draining.  no swim with this.   that may be pushing it too far.  although i have found that with the breathing it's better with swimming. i'd think with all the coughing swimming would be hell but it really does help me focus and regulate my breathing.
 they have these boardwalks to wander out on for the views.  in the summer blossom tries to get down in there for a swim.  no go.
 gay marriage is all over the news and all over facebook today.  i try to just stay away from those topics which seem to be a bit devisive in my family.  fodder for comments, so not worth it.  figure we all kinda know the others views.  do like to show support to those out there who have love but aren't allowed to marry the one they love.  my hats off to anyone who is willing to commit to one person.  i always figure with so much hate in our world, any love should be celebrated and encouraged.  heterosexuals have a nearly 50 % divorce rate so it's not like they are qualified as experts on commitment.  i also like that the gay population is willing and desirous to take in babies.  again, if you have means, love and desire to share...go for it!
 these things going through the courts regarding gay marriage also seem to be bringing up the abortion issues. social issues.  guess north dakota just passed legislation saying that no abortions once a fetus has a heartbeat which would be 6 weeks.  i don't like abortion, but i do believe it should be an option for women.  it's not an option i would choose, though if i'd been raped and was pregnant i doubt i would feel good carrying a rapists child and bringing that into our world.  sadly, there are many kids in our nation who have no homes.  not that they should have been aborted, but we aren't doing a very good job with all these lives we save as it is.  many of these people who are adamant against abortion aren't doing much with the kids that are here and without parents or are here and have totally crappy parents.  i'd just like to see that happening more.  guess it would make me respect their opinions more if they were doing more than saving lives...those lives you save continue on.  often at the hands of people who are abusive or who are addicted to drugs and alcohol.
 it always totally irks me that babies are born addicted to drugs and the parental rights aren't severed immediately.  in my opinion, if you do drugs during your pregnancy you have already proven yourself to be an unfit parent and the rights should be severed immediately and that baby given the hope and chance.  what happens though is it goes back and forth for years and then the kid is 2-5 years old and the window of adoption has all but closed.  it's just so sad and frustrating.
 love the big trees out there.  this one i always seem to snap a photo of.  it's got a big cave in the bottom of it's trunk.
 ate healthy this afternoon. stopped by taco bell on the way back from eagle river. it's a rarity, but i do occasionally like a few crunchy taco's. i break em apart and make a salad out of them.  i saw this little old lady do that years ago at the taco treat i worked at as a teenager.  i tried it and i liked it.

 took lots of the trees.  a breeze was blowing and the snow was falling. it looked cool  blowing in the light, but i didn't get that lucky shot.  as soon as i'd turn my attention elsewhere the clump would drop and i'd miss the moment.  i'm not the most patient.  really i think blossom and i both just wanted to stop a lot on the trek back and take a break.  i'm sure i burned a few calories out there today.
 below in the valley is the river.  it's actually a pretty wide river.  just all frozen up.
 one of the yurts you can rent out there.
 more trees and sunshine.

 used the wide angle for most of these shots.  others i just used my little powershot on.
 still want to find those road crews and get some action shots in black and white...i think that would be cool.
 back to the boardwalk for a few more pictures.  that last hill seemed pretty large and took forever to get up.  i took a wrong path that last bit.  so i think i ended up in the overflow parking area.  i'm not the first to have done that as there was a little path that led up the hill to the main parking.  i trudged up and blossom zipped up.
 rio was happy to have us home in time for dinner.  she'll be joining us if we go to seward.  she can handle a drive.  i usually just stop and find little places to walk the dogs as i go.
 i'm feeling all toasty, but no fevers. yeah!
 now to just lick this cough and i'll be back to normal.
hope you enjoy the scenes at eagle river.  it's a pretty place to walk.  i always seem to forget about it so i'm happy i remembered today. always worth the trip out there.

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