Return for the Kings.

Having successfully caught a King Salmon on the fly, I wanted to show me friends why it is so exciting. We headed back down to Anchor River and fished until nearly midnight. Hardly needed headlamps.Screen Shot 2017-07-26 at 8.47.56 AM.png¬†Unsuccessful on day one, it did not matter with a “sunset” like this.¬†Screen Shot 2017-07-26 at 8.47.06 AM.png

The next day, the river was closed to fishing so we got to explore Homer and the Homer Spit. Homer is in the news lately because of the fight on immigration that it is battling.Screen Shot 2017-07-26 at 8.48.14 AM.pngScreen Shot 2017-07-26 at 8.48.24 AM.png

The next day, the river was back open and we hit it early. We spent a few cold, almost dark, hours practicing our casts, and hooking and losing a couple of fish. Then it turned on. We found the right spot and the right time and we crushed it. The freezer is starting to fill.Screen Shot 2017-07-26 at 8.48.35 AM.png

Wolverine Peak (almost).

Hike 6/52 for the 52 hike challenge.

It starts off beautiful right from the trailhead. It is a big well worn trail at the Prospect Heights Trailhead.

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Then it slowly follows the appropriately named Powerline Trail.Screen Shot 2016-07-12 at 2.08.33 AM

This is quite an easy trail. It isn’t too steep, it is wide, it is gorgeous. I love Anchorage.Screen Shot 2016-07-12 at 2.08.44 AMThis time of year, there are flowers of every color outside. The pinks, the purples, the whites, the yellows, I wanted to show them all off. I wanted to sit and stare at them, I wanted to make sure I made noise to alert any bears.Screen Shot 2016-07-12 at 2.09.02 AMThe whole trail is very well marked. I brought a GPS, but really did not need it. Some of our adventures are totally unmarked and out in the middle of nowhere. This trail was nothing like that.Screen Shot 2016-07-12 at 2.09.15 AMThe views from the trail were incredible.Screen Shot 2016-07-12 at 2.09.27 AMI did not have enough time to make it to the top of Wolverine Peak, but I think that is it behind the dogs. The trail got steep, the day got late, and I had somewhere to be. I did get to hear coyotes calling as the sun went down. This place is amazing, still.Screen Shot 2016-07-12 at 2.09.42 AM

Turnagain Arm.

We live pretty close to Turnagain Arm. The arm is a 40 mile long waterway that has some amazing views. Any time we are headed south, we hug the water and drive carefully as we look for beluga whales to the right and mountain goats to the left. Turnagain Arm has steep mountains on either side that are usually covered in snow.

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Across the street from our house is Potter Marsh. In the winter it freezes completely and people go out ice skating on the marsh. When the water is moving, we see muskrats, lots of birds, and even salmon swimming. It is an incredible place to have so close to our house. Recently, the weather was in the single digits and the marsh froze. The place was packed with ice skating families. Then it snowed. That made it more difficult for ice skating, but we still were able to take the dogs out to run around.

Screen Shot 2015-11-28 at 5.59.23 PMI am blown away by how gorgeous this place is. Every damn day. Just beautiful. It also feels relatively empty. We go running on one of the more popular hiking trails and hardly ever see anyone during the week. Sometimes we go a little further down the road (maybe 5 miles) to hike in a new spot.

Here, we started from McHugh Creek trail. The views across Turnagain Arm were worth the stop in the snow. Obi flushed a Ruffed Grouse on this hike. That was the first one that we had seen here. There is always something new here. It is incredible.Screen Shot 2015-11-28 at 6.00.00 PM.png

Eventually the snow melted, which we didn’t expect so late in the year, and we got to run in shorts again. It was Black Friday and everyone seemed to live the REI #OptOutside idea. I am all for it. We drove to the trailhead so we could spend more time running through the forest. It was the busiest we had ever seen it. There were about a dozen people out there.

Once again, we had to stop and take a picture. Sure, our run times slow down with snow, ice, mud, and picture taking, but it is definitely worth it!Screen Shot 2015-11-28 at 6.00.24 PM

Secret Lake

I am a little hesitant to mention the name of this hike or where it leads. Maybe I won’t mention it here, but if you ask I will tell you the name and it will be easy to figure out how to get there with a little research. We went on the afternoon of a holiday. Luckily, I didn’t have school, or I would feel guilty about not studying.

The hike started at an unmarked trailhead. We passed through many different kinds of environments.

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The birder is always busy.

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There were beautiful marshes and meadows.

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The dogs were well behaved as always.
Screen Shot 2015-06-11 at 7.50.06 PMWe eventually made it to a beautiful lake where the clouds would come rolling in over the mountains and restrict the visibility to just a few feet. Then as fast as it started, the wind would push the clouds away and the trees, lake, and surrounding peaks would be visible and inspiring.Screen Shot 2015-06-13 at 9.38.31 AMThe wildflowers were beautiful in the meadows on the trail leading to the lake.Screen Shot 2015-06-13 at 9.39.56 AMAt the lake there is a cabin that is open to the public and stocked by generous hikers. There were three cots, a guitar, Ramen, canned foods, and a spinning rod. Screen Shot 2015-06-13 at 9.38.49 AMScreen Shot 2015-06-13 at 9.39.32 AM

Craptastic Science.

This amazing article from National Geographic has me carefully watching my dog poop. According to the article, “under stable magnetic conditions the dogs would always poop and pee while facing either north or south. This provides convincing evidence that dogs can sense magnetic fields and are sensitive to even small magnetic-field variations, say the researchers”.

Now I know that my dog is amazing. Probably more amazing than most children I come across. But this just proves it. In the back yard, Lando has peed facing north 3 times and 1 facing south. We are 4 for 4. However, I don’t know where the sun was. Maybe he didn’t want to stare into the sun. He is a cautious dog and temporary blindness would freak any of us out.

Also, knowing how sensitive a dog’s nose is, I can imagine that he wouldn’t want to be downwind of his poop. I know I try to stay upwind. Don’t worry, I will keep watching to see if this experiment is valid.

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Fishing the Teanaway River.

We fished the Teanaway River last week. It is less than 2 hours from Seattle, just outside the town of Cle Elum. It seems to get a lot of anglers as there are many “No Trespassing” signs. We hit the North Fork first and found some very small fish. We fished near a bridge which probably sees a lot of pressure. Luckily, we went mid week so we didn’t see any other anglers that day. It turned out to be a beautiful day and it is a great small stream to fish in the summer.Screen shot 2013-07-01 at 3.03.17 PMThe fields were full of flowers and Lando made sure to stop and smell as many as he could.
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There were plenty of bugs around and just like the forks of the Snoqualmie River, a size 14 Stimulator was magic. All of the small hungry fish were voraciously attacking flies on the surface.
Screen shot 2013-07-01 at 3.03.26 PM We fished the Middle Fork of the Teanway River later in the day and found it to be low, clear, and amazing. There were caddisflies all over the bottom. Bill is standing on the light colored bottom where there was a lot of fish food, but no fish to be found. We have to find the dark bottom to find the fish.Screen shot 2013-07-01 at 3.03.52 PMThis is a closer look at the bugs on the bottom of the creek.
Screen shot 2013-07-01 at 3.04.04 PMIt was a fantastic day of getting out of Seattle and fishing a new spot. I will be back. Thanks for reading and please leave your comments below.

Licton Springs

I think that many people try to find awesome things far away from home. Think of all of the exotic destinations that you daydream about. There are probably many things/places close to home that are incredible. There is allegedly a natural spring within walking distance from our house. It is called Licton Springs. From Seattle Parks and Recreation:

Licton Springs was once a healing center for Native Americans, who constructed sweat lodges and bathed in the mineral waters of the springs. After pioneer David Denny built a cabin near the springs in 1870, hundreds of settlers drove for miles to immerse themselves in the spring water and in the mud.

Licton springs sign Licton springs boardwalk licton springs panorama dog at licton springsThere was certainly a lot of water flowing through the park. Unfortunately, it was from one culvert to another. It looked like a sewer pipe dumping water into a park and collecting it at the other side. To add insult to injury there were plenty of homeless looking people passed out or drinking in groups at some of the nicest looking spots. I am not saying that they shouldn’t enjoy it, on the contrary, I hope it is healing to them, but I was afraid to walk through the whole park in the middle of the day. Even with my guard dog.