Friday, December 1, 2017

Talus Rocks - #SaturdaySnapshots


Another senior center hike -- this one in the Talus Rocks area of Tiger Mountain.

Definition of talus
1 :a slope formed especially by an accumulation of rock debris. 
2 :rock debris at the base of a cliff. 

The aptly named Talus Rocks Trail took us to this accumulation of huge boulders. For scale: the wooden barricade is about four feet tall. Also, check out a few of the senior center hikers in the background.
(Click on photos to enlarge.)



A tight squeeze between those giant-sized rocks!

Taking a few minutes to grab a drink of water in a beautiful setting.

Altogether we covered seven miles with an overall elevation gain of 1,000 feet. Whew! My only complaint (besides being tired at the end) is that the trails were covered with a layer of wet leaves which hid slippery rocks. It would have been easy to turn an ankle on a hidden obstacle. It might be better to explore these trails in spring or summer when rocks on the path would be visible. 

We started at the hiking symbol on the map below (Tradition Plateau) and meandered along the trails in this order (as best I can remember): 

Bus Trail (there's an abandoned, rusty school bus by the trail - wish I'd paused to take a picture!)
Nook Trail
Talus Rocks Trail
Section Line Trail
High School Trail
Adventure Trail
Brink Trail (overlooks a deep ravine)
Bonneville Trail
Swamp Trail (alongside a boggy area)
Around the Lake Trail

FYI: The Swamp Trail (a 1/3-mile-long self-guided trail) features "Zoe and the Swamp Monster" with placards along the path that tell a story. My granddaughter would love it! (Link: Swamp Trail)






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Friday, November 24, 2017

Granbury, Texas - #SaturdaySnapshots

Inspired by a Southwest Airlines fare sale and a kind invitation from my life-long friend (and co-author) Sandra Allen (plus a reunion with high school friends), I recently made a quick trip back to my home state of Texas. During my visit, one of our adventures took us to the town of Granbury. According to the National Register of Historic Places, Granbury's town square is one of the most complete 19th century courthouse squares in Texas.* 
(Click on photos to enlarge.)

The centerpiece of the square is the Hood County Courthouse.





The beautifully renovated Granbury Opera House faces the courthouse entrance. We had a great time at the "Salute to Opry" concert.



There are certain foods I must have every time I go back to Texas: Tex-Mex (preferably tamales and enchiladas), chicken fried steak, and fried okra.  I had all those. But this time I had a bonus meal of delicious German food: pork schnitzel, red cabbage with apples, and hot German potato salad. Along with a warm dark-bread roll and a glass of pilsner, my meal at Ketzlers Schnitzel Haus and Biergarten was heaven. (FYI: Many German immigrants settled in Texas's Hill Country.)



I also had a fantastic reuben sandwich at The Fillin' station (also on Granbury's town square). A glass of local beer-- Revolver Brewing's "Blood and Honey" (American wheat ale) -- and freshly cooked potato chips made the meal complete. Forget dieting!



Back in Sherman, TX, we ate at MG's. Great burgers and car-themed decor.

Pegasus (AKA The Flying Red Horse) was a landmark in the Dallas skyline for many years and the symbol of Mobil Oil Company, atop its downtown headquarters.



How do you know you're in Texas? Longhorn cattle alongside the road!


Happy Thanksgiving, y'all!







Sources: 
Hood County Courthouse, TX
Ketzler's Schnitzel Haus, Granbury, TX


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Friday, November 17, 2017

More #Photo Tips - #SaturdaySnapshots

Want to know more about lighting in your photography? Recently I posted info from a YouTube video by photographer Peter McKinnon (HERE) with a couple of tips for improving our photos. Deb Nance at Readerbuzz left a comment and suggested I put together a post featuring more suggestions from McKinnon. So today's post is about lighting. 

In Tip #4 McKinnon suggests, "Move to a window."

I took this first photo using a flash.



I think the Rainier cherries look yummier in natural light from a nearby window.


McKinnon also advises, "Wait for the golden hour." According to Wikipedia: "In photography, the golden hour is a period shortly after sunrise or before sunset during which daylight is soft and even with a warmer color temperature."

Maybe this is what he had in mind.


I wish I could say that I'd worked hard to create these photos. Actually, I take lots of pictures, and sometimes I'm just lucky.




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Friday, November 3, 2017

Water Drums - Snoqualmie Valley Trail - #SaturdaySnapshots

Although my hikes and walks often feature similar scenery, there always seems to be one "something" that sets each adventure apart from the others. Recently, our group hiked five miles on the Snoqualmie Valley Trail. What made it memorable? The "rain drums" at the Cedar River Watershed Education Center.
[Click on photos to enlarge.]





After our hike on that rainy, windy day, we stopped at the shelter of the education center to eat our brown-bagged lunches. We didn't expect a symphony! Rain runoff from the center's roof had been directed into tubes and splashed down onto the drums. The rhythms created a delightful musical accompaniment to our meals.

Link for More Info:  Cedar River Watershed Education Center
Click on "Water Drum Video" on that page for a six-minute talk by the artist who created the water drums.





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Friday, October 27, 2017

Carpinito Brothers Pumpkins & Corn Maze - #SaturdaySnapshots

What's Halloween without pumpkins? We saw a gazillion at Carpinito Brothers and had a great time on a beautiful autumn day.
[Click on photos to enlarge]


There's more to this pumpkin patch than
just pumpkins! My husband and
granddaughter tackled the corn maze.

We went through the hay bale maze
more than once too.
Duck racing.
Slides are more fun when you
land in a pile of hay.
Most popular activity?
Playing in the corn bin.

How are you celebrating autumn?





More Info: Carpinito Brothers Pumpkin Patch & Corn Maze

Saturday Snapshots is hosted by West Metro Mommy Reads. To participate: 
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Friday, October 20, 2017

Pioneer Farm - #SaturdaySnapshots

Recently I went on a field trip to the Pioneer Farm and Ohop Indian Museum (near Eatonville, Washington) with my granddaughter's school. Even with nonstop rain, we had a great time! Here's what we saw.
(Click on photos for a closer look.)

Imagine studying with children of all ages
in a one-room schoolhouse.
Native-American women told about local plants and
animals and how they were used by their ancestors:
for sleeping mats, medicine, food, clothing, tools.

A rapt audience learns about life in pioneer days -
churning milk into butter, making biscuits, spinning
wool into yarn, and hundreds of other chores. 

My granddaughter thought washing
clothes was fun. 
How do you sew without electricity?
Foot power!
A blacksmith demonstrated his art.
Not so sure about milking that giant cow!
Most fun of all? Jumping into a pile of hay.




More info: Pioneer Farm Museum

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Friday, October 6, 2017

Pratt River Connector Trail - #SaturdaySnapshots

From the Auburn Senior Activity Center brochure:

PRATT RIVER CONNECTOR TRAIL
MILES: 6
RATING: 2

WTA* volunteers have been working on this trail for 3 years to provide hikers safe access to the Pratt River Trail. The trail crosses the Middle Fork of the Snoqualmie River turning right to connect with the Pratt River Trail. With an elevation gain of 100 feet the hike offers a relaxing riverside ramble. There are some creek crossings to challenge balance so trekking poles are recommended. 
*Washington Trails Association

Click on photos to enlarge.

Our hike started by crossing this beautiful bridge
over the Middle Fork - Snoqualmie River
Much of the time we could see the river and
hear it in the background.
Mountains filled the horizon.

This rock path is evidence of the hard work
done by the WTA
We walked past huge rock formations.
This one had a cave at its base.
The WT
A built the steps on the far left.
We came around a bend and stopped in awe
at this magnificent view.
At times we walked through shaded woods.
We hiked along the trail for three miles, stopped to
eat lunch, and then turned around and headed back
.

Back across the bridge, headed home.

More info: HERE




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