Wesley`s wanders

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Grand Canyon Days 19-22

October 11th 2009 8:45 pm
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Thurs Oct 8

Dad and I drove thru the fertile farmlands of central California today thanks to our GPS which allowed us to leave the boring interstate and travel the backroads. This was actually a shorter route anyway!Dad gave me a walk thru one of these orchards and we walked past row upon row of small fruit trees,a rather neat experience! We stopped tonite at Donner Lake and dad gave me a walk around the lake on the trail. We found a really huge pine cone here which dad plans to keep as a memorial to my brother,Smiley. We camped tonite on the wooden porch of a cabin belonging to our Dogster friend,Wesley. Thanks to Wesley`s mom for this privalige!


Friday Oct 9

Today was an exciting day exploring the remote Nevada desert. We left Interstate 80 at Fernley,NV and travelled US routes 50,95,and 6. Dad and I love the quiet stillness of the desert and we drove off the road to a spot behind a tall rock formation to have our lunch in the silence of this immense landscape. Later in the afternoon we explored two craters,Lunar Crater and Easy Chair Crater. These are actually 2 craters in the Nevada desert,perhaps caused by ancient meteor impacts. The sun set over the desert landscape as we were hiking back from Easy Chair Crater. We camped tonite in the Nevada desert with brilliant stars overhead. A totally peaceful experience!


Sat Oct 10

Today,Dad and I entered Utah just as the sun was rising over the desert. We stopped at a small cafe on the NV/UT border for a cup of coffee and breakfast for me and dad. As we drove thru Utah this morning, Dad pulled off highway 21 at a historical marker which indicated that an old silver mine had once operated at this site. We drove back a road into the desert and came upon a sign which said NO TRESSPASSING POISON GAS UNSTABLE MINE SHAFTS. Dad decided to explore the area anyway and we actually discovered an open mine shaft and hiked a short way back into it. There were old wooden buildings of the town which once existed here! We then drove on to Kanab,UT where Dad got us a motel room and we visited the North Rim of Grand Canyon in the afternoon and hiked the Uncle Jim trail which gave us some nice views into the depths of the Canyon.


Sun Oct 11

Back to the North Rim of Grand Canyon today where we hiked the Widforss trail out to Widforss Point. Here ,alone on this backcountry trail we could enjoy the immense Canyon views. It was a 10 mile hike out and back and I carried my food and water in my dogpack. We also hiked out to Bright Angel Point for more stunning views. A picture is worth 1000 words as they say and Dad will post pix when he returns home. We will probably camp out again in Colorado tommorrow nite and will post further entries when next we have internet access.

 

Grand Canyon Days 23-25

October 14th 2009 5:50 pm
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Mon Oct 12

Dad walked me early this morning in Kanab,Utah and he found another geocache in the early morning darkness by the light of his headlamp. We went back to the motel for breakfast and after checking out,we drove 5 miles to Best Friends Animal Sanctuary. After "bagging" another geocache nearby,Dad and I visited Best Friends and the memorial that he has for his dog angel,Butch,there. Dad placed Smiley`s urn by Butch`s memorial and said a few prayers there. He plans to put another memorial for Smiley next to Butch`s stone.

We traveled thru Utah this afternoon,headed east towards Colorado. A few short hikes in this area revealed an amazing landscape of colored rock spires and narrow canyons. If one were not careful,it would be easy to get lost in the maze of canyons here!

Local Indian Tribes were selling beads and pottery at some overlooks along Interstate 70. Dad purchased a nice cedramic urn and will place it next to Smiley`s urn when we return home. We reached western Colorado late in the afternoon and camped for the night.


Tues Oct 13

Dad and I were awakened in the predawn darkness by the sound of light rain. After leaving camp,the rain intensified as we were driving along Interstate 70. The highway was climbing in altitude as it crossed the Rocky Mts and light snow began at the higher altitudes. It dusted the nearby ground and road for a bit,but the driving was not too dicey at all. Amazingly,sun broke thru the clouds later in the morning and dad and I explored the old silver mining town of Georgetown,CO. There were old buildings here from the 1800`s and even a church with stained glass windows. Dad got some nice pix here. A narrow gauge railroad winds thru the mountains here and dad got some nice shots of the trestle and old railway depot. We would have taken a ride on it,but it was only running on weekends after Labor Day. We did some hiking in the Rocky Mts near Pine,Colorado. There was a scenic mountain lake here with nice trails. The sun was out and it was nearly 70 degrees,quite a change from the morning snow!
Later in the afternoon,Dad and I drove thru the high plains of eastern Colorado. The land is totally flat here with gentle ridges and is covered with grasses. There is nothing to block the wind and it was quite gusty as we did a short hike here near Limon,CO. We camped for the night by sleeping in our car along desolate US 40 right at the Colorado/Kansas border. A dark and peaceful campsite in the wilds of eastern Co/western Kansas. There was a dense fog tonite and the temp hovered around 37 degrees.


Wed Oct 14

Not too eventful a day today as it was mainly a travel day thru Kansas and Missouri. Very foggy in the morning as we traversed western Kansas so no views were had of the dramatic folded landscape here. The fog lifted by afternoon but it remained cloudy and quite cool. We are staying at a motel in Booneville,MO tonite as Dad needed a warm shower after the camping out. We will probably sleep in our car at a rest area tomorrow night so as to make it home on Friday night. Dad likes to have a little bit of rest time before having to return to work. It has been a very nice trip and dad will post final notes upon our return home. We may have some snow in central PA on the way home,amazing for October!

 

Trip`s end Grand Canyon 2009

October 17th 2009 8:00 am
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Thurs Oct 15

Dad and I travelled thru Missouri today stopping to hike at Katy Trail State Park which was near Booneville. This is an old abandoned stretch of railroad that has been converted into a hiking trail and it parallels the Missouri River. Dad and I hiked 4 miles of the trail and enjoyed views of high rocky cliffs close to 100 ft high on one side and the Missouri River on the other. In one spot,there was a cabin or more correctly cliff dwelling carved into the cliff wall. It was only 1 room in all but it was neat to see! In another place,there was a small spring gushing directly out of a rock. That reminded Dad of a Bible story! We travelled as far as mid-Ohio tonight. The weather had turned rather cloudy and cool. We slept in our car at a rest area so as to get an early start for the final day of the trip.

Fri Oct 16

We arrived home today. The weather in Pennsylvania was cold and rainy. The temp was in the upper 30`s and there was a touch of snow in spots as we traveled the PA Turnpike. What a change after all that glorious sunshine out West! The trip was 8641 miles in all. We had lots of fun. Dad will work on his pictures and post them as he runs them thru his photo program.

 

Pocono Hiking

November 4th 2009 1:48 pm
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Woofs to all!
Dad took me hiking for the day yesterday in Big Pocono State Park near Tannersville,PA. Although the peak fall foliage season is past,there were still lots of colorful leaves to see and for me lots of rich fall smells along the trails. The day was sunny and cool for the most part although some cloudiness at mid day did produce a very small amount of wet snow. It was just a few flakes,nothing to really bark about. Dad had his GPS along and used it to locate a hidden geocache. It was a brisk fall hike and we both had a fun day!

 

November Rafting!

November 18th 2009 6:46 am
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Dad and I actually did a bit of rafting yesterday! It was just a very short trip but this is the latest time of year that we have ever used our raft! It was a trip born out of necessity as a bridge over the canal at Bulls Island in NJ is undergoing repairs. We were out for a day hike and hiked the canal towpath up to Frenchtown,crossed the bridge to the PA side of the Delaware River and hiked back to Point Pleasant. Here we crossed the pedestrian bridge back to NJ and our start at Bulls Island. We would have had to raft across the Delaware river itself here as the pedestrian bridge was also gated off,but the gate had been partially cut away and we could squeeze through. Rafting across the chilly Delaware on a cold November evening would have been a bit scary! Once at Bulls Island,we came to the canal which is a lot narrower than the Delaware river itself. Dad inflated the raft by headlamp in the gathering darkness and we rafted across to the towpath and back to our car. This little adventure has gotten Dad to consider maybe a few short raft trips out to islands on the Delaware if the day is mild and sunny enough. How nice it would be to have an island all to ourselves as we enjoyed our lunch on a sunny late fall or winter day!
Wes

 

Hiking the Rim Trail

November 18th 2009 3:19 pm
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On our recently completed Grand Canyon trip,Dad and I hiked the Rim Trail for 12 miles out to Hermit`s Rest and back. Dad got lots of nice shots of me on the rim of Grand Canyon and will rotate them on my page under the title Rim Trail photo on the right center of my page. This pix will change as dad works on the photos.
Wes

 

Winter Backpacking Dec 09

December 13th 2009 2:04 pm
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Dad and I just got back from a 5 day hike in the Pocono Mts of NJ. We hiked the Appalacian Trail as well as various side trails and woods roads to make a multi day hike. We started from the Delaware Water Gap on Mon Dec 7 and hiked to the summit of Mt Tammany. The snow was spotty at first,but as we ascended the mountain trail it deepened to about 2 inches at the summit. The weather was cloudy and cold with just a few sunny breaks. We hiked this trail several miles back and around a mountain lake where we stopped to have lunch. We then linked up with the Appalacian Trail and ascended to a high rocky ridgetop with expansive views of the Delaware River. Dad used his GPS to locate a hidden geocache in this area. We camped for night 1 under the stars in a circular clearing of snow along the Appalacian Trail.
Tues Dec 8 dawned sunny and cold but hiking along the trail in the fresh snow was glorious! We followed the Appalacian Trail to an old woods road which descended into a rocky ravine thru which rushed a swift stream,Vancampens Brook. There were rocky ledges here with sheer drop offs to the stream below! Exiting the ravine,we followed a pleasant woods road in bright sunshine. Here we relaxed a bit and had our lunch. Later in the afternoon the occasional sound of gunshots could be heard as it was deer season. We camped along a lonely woods road near Flatbrook stream as evening was coming on.
Wed Dec 9
We could hear the patter of snowflakes on the tent overnite and by daylight,about 3 fresh inches had fallen. The snow changed to a cold rain as dawn was breaking and dad decided to hole up in the tent for a few extra hours to wait out the chilly rain. As a result,we got a late start to day 3 of our hike. Mid afternoon,we came upon an interesting waterfall flowing down a rocky slope. This was an awesome sight as the woods were shrouded in fog. Later in the day we came upon bear tracks in the snow! A picture is posted on my page contrasting my small paw print with the huge print of the bear!
Thurs Dec 1o
Morning dawned sunny and clear and we resumed our hike passing thru an old 1800`s village known as Millbrook Village. There was an old general store here as well as a wooden hotel and blacksmith shop. The hiking was pleasant today,cold but sunny.
Fri Dec 11
Temp dropped to 9 degrees overnite but dad`s stove heated up the tent nicely! We finished our hike today under sunny skies. photos from our trip are here http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=13446&id=1793873206&sa ved#/album.php?aid=13446&id=1793873206

 

SNOW!!!

December 19th 2009 7:26 am
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It is snowing here and is suppossed to do so all day long. Later in the day,we are forecast to have blowing wind and drifting snow. All in all about 12--18 inches is forecast. Dad is going to take me for a walk thru the park soon but hiking anywhere later in the day will certainly be an effort. We like snow but this is a bit too much of a nice thing!
Wesley

 

Delaware Canal hiking

December 28th 2009 1:20 pm
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Dad took me for an all day hike along the Delaware Canal yesterday. The weather was mild---50 degrees in the afternoon---and bright sunshine. We hiked 10 miles each way from Bulls Island,NJ to the Frenchtown Milford area and back, exploring a wilderness area by the river north of Frenchtown as well as finding a hidden geocache here. It was a beautiful day for a hike,photos of it can be foundcanal hike 12-27 here

 

Ice and Hiking

January 1st 2010 7:42 am
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Happy New Year to all!
Dad and I took another day hike along the Delaware Canal a few days ago and we came upon some interesting ice formations on a rock cliff and also near the Delaware river. Ice Photos Click to see the pix! We hiked 20 miles round trip for the day and I was a tad tired at the end of the hike!

 
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