Monday, February 01, 2010

Wallace Falls

FIRST HIKE OF 2010!! YAYAYAYAYAY!!!

What a weekend! I can't believe all the stuff we crammed into two days, but man did we get a lot done...and still went HIKING!! YAYAYAYAYAYA!!!

Ok, sorry...where was I?

Oh yeah...HIKING!!!! YAYAYAYAYAYA!!!!


...I swear that's the last time.

We were picked to host the January family birthday dinner and was told it would be on Sunday, however the tall one texted me Friday with a note saying "don't freak out, but they are coming over tomorrow".

Don't freak out? The house was a MESS! My things were still not unpacked and the living room was covered in boxes. He quickly rallied the troops, assigning food tasks to the family so that I would have the day free to clean. And clean we did! The house was done JUST IN TIME for the family to arrive fashionably late. I made homemade bruschetta and got a little help from Trader Joes Artichoke dip and made a super yummy salad which went well with the pot roast the tall one's mom made (for her own birthday, no less, but I was so grateful to not have to make it).

I think the best compliment we got that night was "your home just feels so inviting".

Sunday morning around 8:30 I slowly woke up in the tall one's arms and quietly said "ok, let's go hiking" to which he exclaimed "OK!" and pushed me out of bed. That's the last time I do that! He made breakfast and we were out the door with packs in hand (after a slightly frustrating search for my camera's battery charger) and in the car an hour and a half later.

The weather forecast had said that Sunday was supposed to be a clear day but as we drove further and further down Highway 2 it was obvious that the rain wasn't going to let up. It didn't dampen our spirits any, we were ready for a hike rain be damned.

fog in the valley

Wallace Falls State Park has been on my list of hikes for a while. I don't mind the cliche waterfall shots, they are pretty and fun for me to practice my landscape photo skills on. With three large waterfalls within less than 3 miles, this was a great trail to get back in the swing of things. I had promised myself that this year I wouldn't be huffing it up the mountain, too weak by the time I made it to the top to really appreciate the view, let alone photograph it so I've spent the last month at the gym prepping for the upcoming season. This hike (at almost 6 miles round trip) was a good test of my endurance.

middle and lower falls

The rain was coming down in big droplets and since my lens does not have a hood (for some reason it didn't come with it, which I thought strange) my lens got quite a bit of moisture on it, ruining some shots unfortunately. The tall one even fashioned a makeshift shelter with his hood at one point, which helped later on the trail as the rain let up a bit and the only thing pelting us was the drippings from the trees.

middle wallace falls

The slight elevation gain to get to the middle falls left me breathless, but my energy level stayed nice and high the entire hike. When we reached upper Wallace Falls both of us looked at each other and said "is that it?". We were ready for more! WHICH WAS AWESOME! I can't even begin to explain how happy that made me, and I finally felt like all that work at the gym was paying off.

Mind you, I used the tall one as a pack mule for most of the trip and only had my camera backpack on for 3/4 of the hike so I was running light, he didn't mind however and I was able to keep up with his fast pace. Yet another thing that made me so freaking happy as last year I had to continuously tell him to slow down.

OH! AND! Even though Wallace Falls State Park is a good hour and a half from our house, the tall one arrived at the trailhead refreshed and ready to go instead of exhausted from a cramped car ride in my little Acura. YAY CRV!

We arrived home around 4:30 and after a nice warm shower the tall one was treated to me yelling insults at the Grammy Award show:

"Why is Beyonce singing a ballad surrounded by storm troopers?"
"OH GOD STEVIE NICKS WHY??! Taylor Swift? The world is ending as I know it."

It was a lovely weekend and I can't wait until we hit the trail again!

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