To Alex -

To Alex...who is far away in person, but never far from my heart. I miss you. Enjoy these snippets of everyday family life here in the states.

Monday, January 21, 2013

It wasn't my fault.

I mean the lack of posting this time. Darned blogger wouldn't let me upload photos unless I loaded them onto Picasa first. Heck, I didn't even know my photos were saved on Picasa, did you?

Anyway, when I left you last (haha) I was headed to the woods for a winter backpacking trip. You know I'm no stranger to hiking in the snow, but it crossed my mind that I could be cold while camping in the woods and I was a little worried I wouldn't be able to carry the gear I would need to prevent that. Cold weather gear can take up a lot of space and my backpack only holds so much, but lucky for me there was enough snow that I was able to pull a sled with me. I'll tell you what, a sleeping bag rated to -25 degrees is absolutely heaven in the woods and having a roaring fire to warm up by makes life in the woods downright pleasant. Take a peak...
The trail to our campsight. We set out early morning on Saturday, hiked about an hour out to the lake and once camp was set up, we ventured out in different directions to explore the surrounding area. 
I went with a group who headed North along the beach. That kept the wind at our back and we were able to enjoy the sunshine and the beautiful scenery along the lakeshore. In spite of the sunshine, it was cold, cold enough that the spray from the waves was freezing wherever it landed on the beach and we huddled deeper into our scarves and neck gaiters. Eventually, we would leave the beach and hike up into the woods to follow the ridgeline back to camp, ever so grateful for the protection of the trees which give us sanctuary from the wind.
I said before that I wanted to build a snowman, track a Red-tailed Fox and make tea from a Douglas Fir. As you can see, I made the snowman, and I did see a Red-tailed fox, but I wasn't able to track it, nor I wasn't able to locate a Douglas Fir to make tea. I'll keep looking for that one. I guess that means I was able to accomplish 1.5 out of three? Hmmm...
It was a glorious day for exploring in the woods and later, we would share dinner and laughter around a blazing fire as we marveled that we knew at least 12 crazy people in Michigan who actually enjoyed winter camping. No one wanted to leave the fire, but a cold drizzle began to fall about 8:30 and it forced us to the safety of our tents. I heard the wind pick up overnight and we woke to ice covered tents and gale force winds blowing in off the lake. We were sheltered somewhat from the wind, but we didn't linger in camp afer breakfast. No, it was time to head inland, time to leave the woods, time to go back to that other world.
Until the next time.


  1. I've never done any sort of winter camping... It sounds like so much fun. Recently Hubba has been talking about doing it one day.

    Regarding the Felted Soap: It's super easy. I found this YouTube video. You can use any feltable fiber... sheep's wool, alpaca, mohair, anything that felts. Start with it in roving or batt form. I don't think the stocking part is necessary. I do think it would be super fun to do with those kiddos you like to hang out with. ;-)

  2. Here's the link. :-P

  3. Kathryn - as long as you're prepared with gear, the winter camping is a lot of fun. Thanks for the link to the felted soap, I'm curious to try it out.