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The Adventures of Smiley

(Page 8 of 16: Viewing Diary Entry 71 to 80)  
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Autumn hiking on the Appalacian Trail

November 4th 2006 2:38 pm
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I`m interrupting my account of our recent Grand Canyon adventure to bark about our latest hike on the Appalacian Trail. Dad and I travelled to a nice section of the Appalacian Trail near Harrisburg,PA known as the St Anthony Wilderness. We left last monday and just returned yesterday. It was a splendid 5 day hike! All the fall colors were out as we started the hike. Monday,Tues and Wed were sunny and mild then a cold front came through on wed nite with some heavy rain and wind. Dad and I were safely nestled inside our tent,though. We just LOVE being inside a dry tent when it`s raining outside---such a cozy feeling! Thursday and especially Friday were still sunny but much cooler and wed nite`s rain and wind had stricken many of the leaves from the trees. We explored a boulder field on tues under which runs a subterrainian river. As we were hiking here, an Army helicopter from the nearby Ft Indiantown Gap base made a low buzz,almost like a strafing run. Dad and I almost ducked for cover! On the last day of the hike on friday, we visited the "General"---a huge bulldozer type piece of machinery that dates from many decades ago that some enterprising people somehow managed to get way back in the remote woodlands off of the Appalacian Trail. Video clips from this latest adventure will soon appear on my page.



Grand Canyon Day 10

October 29th 2006 12:15 pm
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Tues Sept 26

Today Dad and Allan hiked the Tonto trail from Monument Creek to the Indian Gardens campground. Views from the Tonto were superb especially at the spot where dad stopped for lunch. This spot was atop a small hill and it was quite pleasant to sit here,have lunch and enjoy the Grand Canyon scenery. It did cloud up at times today but no rain. Dad and Allan arrived at the Indian Gardens campground late in the afternoon where they met the 3rd member of their party,Linda,who was going to hike the Clear Creek trail the next day with them. Linda works at the Grand Canyon kennels where I was boarded for the trip. Indian Gardens is a nice spot with large cottonwood trees and a nice swiftly flowing creek. Quite refreshing on a hot day in the Canyon. Off to explore the Clear Creek trail tommorrow!


Grand Canyon Day 9

October 26th 2006 6:44 pm
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Monday Sept 25

Today Dad and Allan hiked the Tonto trail eastward away from the Boucher Trail. The Tonto trail follows a gently rolling plateau about halfway down from the rim of the Grand Canyon. A beautiful sunrise was observed along the Tonto this morning. ( It will be posted on Dad`s Webshots page--hotlink is on my Dogster page). Dad caught glimpses of the Colorado river far below as he and Allan hiked the Tonto this morning. At one point they saw a party of rafters on a beach. It was a small cozy beach along the Colorado river where the rafting party had spent the night.

The hike along the Tonto today was quite pleasant. The Tonto trail affords the hiker much solitude and Dad and Allan were alone much of the day. The temperature was in the 80`s and it was mostly sunny. Lunch was had by Hermit creek under a shady rock overhang. Hiking towards Monument creek late in the day, Dad and Allan met a group of hikers from England. They were impressed by the vastness of Grand Canyon which was quite unlike anything back home. Campsite 2 of the hike was by Monument Creek tonight.


Grand Canyon Day 8

October 25th 2006 12:44 pm
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Sunday Sept 24

Dad began his week long hike down inside the Grand Canyon today. He had to drop me off at the kennels first and we both felt kind of sad about that but dogs aren`t allowed below the rim. It wasn`t all that bad at the kennel for the week though as the nice staff walked me twice a day and I had a nice sunny outside run to relax in.

Dad and his friend Allan from Flagstaff began by hiking down the Hermit trail. The day was sunny and warm--mid 80`s for the high temp. Allan pointed out some fossilized footprints from ancient creatures in the Canyon rocks in the trail`s early section. After a mile or so, the Hermit trail reaches Waldron Basin and the Boucher Trail cuts off here. Boucher affords fine views down into the Canyon and has many level places shaded by dwarf trees that make for nice resting/camping spots. After a few more miles, Boucher neared Yuma Point and there was a nice view down to White`s Butte. Shortly thereafter the trail descended via steep switchbacks down into Travertine canyon. The footing was tough here as there was much rocky scree and it was easy to slip on. Dad`s friend,Allan tossed his pack over a rough spot in the switchbacks in order to facilitate an easier descent and the pack tumbled quite a ways down before comming to rest. Close call! Boucher passed in front of White`s Butte here and then dropped down via more steep switchbacks to the camping area near Boucher creek where Dad and Allan camped for the first night. They reached the campground about half an hour before dark having started the hike around 8:30 am. Dad enjoyed a meal inside his tent and did a bit of stargazing before retiring for the evening.


Grand Canyon Day 7

October 22nd 2006 9:04 pm
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Sat Sept 23

Today Dad and I hiked to the summit of Humphries Peak along with Dad`s friend,Alan,from Flagstaff and his dog,Adrain. Humphries Peak is the highest in Arizona approximately 12,ooo ft high. The trail winds its way upward for several miles thru a forest of aspens and spruce before emerging above treeline onto bare rocky tundra. Once above treeline, the winds were quite gusty and it was a bit on the chilly side. Dad also had developed a nasty cold and thus the hike proved more tiring than normal for him. After about 3 hours or so of hiking, we arrived at the summit. The views from atop Humphries were superb! One can see for many miles in all directions. The Sunset Crater volcano can be seen below and way off on the horizon,one can get a fuzzy view of the Grand Canyon itself. After enjoying the views from the summit and having lunch up there, we started back down arriving at the trailhead about 4 pm. This was a good stretch of the legs for me as Dad has to board me at the Grand Canyon kennel for a week while he backpacks down inside the Canyon. Dogs aren`t allowed below the rim.


Grand Canyon Days 5--6

October 20th 2006 8:00 pm
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Thurs Sept 21

Today Dad and I traversed Oklahoma,picking up Interstate 40 at Oklahoma City. We then headed west to Amirillo,Texas. The land in this section of the country is very flat and the wind was gusting across the plains with considerable force. The flat plains stretching to the horizon have their own stark beauty and dad and I enjoyed the ride. We finished the day at Santa Rosa, New Mexico. Dad checked into a dog friendly Motel 6 here and gave me a walk along historic Route 66 tonight. It was pleasantly cool and the stars shone brightly in the desert skies.

Friday Sept 22

We crossed into Arizona today and arrived in Flagstaff late in the afternoon. Flagstaff is only about 100 miles from the Grand Canyon and dad and I stayed with some friends here in town. Dad is going to spend the next week backpacking down inside the Grand Canyon with 2 of these friends. They have a really nice home in Flagstaff and 2 dogs that I was happy to meet.


Grand Canyon Days 3--4 Tues Sept 19--Wed Sept 20

October 18th 2006 8:23 pm
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Dad and I left Lake City this morning and headed west on Interstate 10. There was a strong but brief thunderstorm as we neared Tallahassee. It was soon over much to my relief and the rest of the afternoon was sunny and warm.

Dad and I stopped at a Gulf coast beach near Pensacola late in the afternoon. The beach was Navarre Beach. The sand here was a dazzling white and the Gulf waters were an emerald green so it was a beautiful spot for both of us to enjoy. Dad body surfed the waves here and I mostly relaxed on the shore.

We continued west along I-10 stopping for the night in Moss Point,Mississippi.

Wed Sept 20

We continued west along I-10 today thru Louisiana. West of Baton Rouge, Interstate 10 traversed an elevated stretch several miles long over a vast swampy area. This was no doubt one of the Louisiana bayous. It projected an eerie feeling of remoteness!

At Lafayette, we took interstate 49 up to Interstate 20 and on into Texas.
We stopped for the night just outside Dallas.


My 2006 trip to the Grand Canyon and California

October 17th 2006 12:32 pm
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Dad and I recently arrived home from our month long trip to the Grand Canyon and California. It was a really fun trip that lasted about a month. We began by driving down to Florida to visit with Dad`s sister and my cousin Julie in Lake City. Then we headed west via interstates 10 and 40 to reach the Grand Canyon. Dad spent a week backpacking down inside the Canyon with 2 friends from Flagstaff,AZ. I had to stay in the Grand Canyon kennels for that week as dogs are not allowed below the rim. Dad did give me a nice day hike to the summit of 12,000 ft Humphries Peak ( highest point in AZ located just outside Flagstaff) on Sept 23, the day before starting his week long Canyon hike. Thus I had a nice bit of exercise before being boarded. The nice kennel staff did walk me a few times each day though.

Dad and I headed west from Flagstaff to San Francisco and we explored the beautiful pacific coast of California north of San Francisco. I even got to swim in the Pacific Ocean! While in San Francisco, Dad took me to visit Dogster Headquarters. The nice folks at Dogster were really glad to see me and even gave Dad and me some nice treats!

We explored the Nevada desert on the way back home and even paid a visit to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon where Dad and I hiked some rim trails there.

We even had some snow and high winds as we hiked in the Colorado Rockies at Loveland Pass near Denver.

Day 1 Sat Sept 16--Sun Sept 17

We left home around 10 pm and headed south on Interstate 95 enroute to Florida. Dad`s sister lives in Lake City near jacksonville with her german shepherd,Julie. We intended to visit with them for a few days and enjoy some Florida beaches before heading west to the Grand Canyon.

As day broke on Sunday morning, we encountered some dense fog in North Carolina. this soon cleared and we ahd a sunny,warm trip the rest of the day. In South Carolina, Dad stopped to give me a nine walk along an abandoned section of US 301 that crosses Lake Marion. This is a large lake and some boats were sailing in the waters below us as we walked across the 301 bridge.

We arrived in Floridat Lake city in late afternoon and I was overjoyed to see my cousin,julie! We were treated to a nice sunset on the farm there where Julie lives with several cainine buddies and a few horses.

Day 2 Monday Sept 18

Today, Dad and I visited Vilano Beach near St Augustine with Julie and her Mom. This is a really neat beach as the pebbly sand here is a vivid red in color. We hiked along the shoreline here as waves from the rough surf crashed over the sand and wetted us from time to time. I`ve posted a video taken at Vilano Beach on my page. We also did another shore stroll at Fernandina Beach north of Jacksonville. All in all, a nice day at some Florida beaches!


Trip Update

September 22nd 2006 9:42 pm
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Dad and I have arrived in Flagstaff,AZ and are staying with some friends and their dogs. Dad`s taking me on a day hike to Humphries Peak tommorrow before he starts his Canyon hike on Sunday. Humphries Peak is the tallest in the state of Arizona and you can actually see the Grand Canyon from atop this mountain even though it`s 70 miles away!! Scenic drive thru the Lousiana Bayou and it was super windy crossing the plains of Oklahoma.



Graand Canyon---West trip 2006

September 18th 2006 7:32 pm
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Day 1

Sun Sept 17,2006

I`m typing this entry from a friends computer down in Lake City, Florida. I`ll probably have to wait till Dad and I return home to type any more news of our trip. We arrived here late yesterday afternoon after Dad drove over 930 miles straight from Philadelphia. He was dog tired when we arrived! There was some fog in North Carolina on the way down but that soon cleared and it was sunny for the remainder of the way to Florida. We stopped around 11 am in South Carolina and Dad gave me a nice long walk on a deserted stretch of US 301 that crosses Lake Marion. This is a huge lake and the views were superb. People were out boating and watersking here. We arrived in Lake City,FL late in the day and had a well deserved rest after witnessing a georgous sunset at our friend`s farm.

Day 2

Mon Sept 18

Today I went to 2 beaches with my cousin Julie,a sweet German Shepherd. The first beach was Vilano beach just below St Augustine. This is a really neat beach as it has reddish sand!! Julie and I as well as our humans walked the beach here for a bit and my Dad swam a bit in the ocean. The surf was a bit on the rough side but Dad had a fun time riding the waves!
We next visited Fernandina beach which is just north of Jacksonville and I had a nice long walk here while dad enjoyed some exhilariting swims in the rough surf.

I`ll bark more news of our trip upon my return unless I somehow get computer access before then.

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