Maybe that’s hyperbole, but it was the last full week of June and neither the Deer Park Road nor the Obstruction Point roads were open! If you can retain some optimism, you try to walk the Obstruction Point Road ( at least there’s no traffic to stir up dust). Dust? Maybe mud is a more apt medium to stir up?
Even before you get to the climb up toward Steeple Rock, you notice that the snow piled up on both sides of the road is taller than you are! A friend told me about the bear scat she saw up here recently. I’m not looking forward to scaling these snow walls to avoid a bear walking down the road — especially a hungry bear, and what other kind is there with all this snow everywhere?
It is pretty, though. The snow piled up on either side of the road has melted into some fantastic shapes and the colors of the snow range from a muddy brown to a beautiful pale teal or maybe just a pretty haunting blue.
Last year or perhaps the year before the blow-downs along this road were amazing; whole forests had seemed to disappear. Today, that gave you a very good view of distant, snow-capped ranges. And, as I found out just a little later, at least going down this first hill the sun felt very nice and warm.
Just about the time that we got closest to Steeple Rock, the wind gusted and the rain fell and the rain sounded like BB’s hitting my jacket and it even looked a little white! Warmth can be an elusive thing.
I’m not really all that thrilled about walking roads, even if they’re closed to traffic; but this wasn’t bad. The problem was that years ago when my wife and I had walked this road to the PJ Lake Trail, we were able to wander off beside the road and explore the area. On this day, the road was the only option, unless you had packed some snowshoes.
I’m sure that our new hiking buddy Art, from Colorado, probably wondered at our choice to walk a road instead of a trail until he saw the sign for the Cox Valley Trail with an arrow pointing into the middle of a huge mound of snow! Sometimes, it’s nice to be able to enjoy the road cuts and examine the rocks without fear of being poked by a wayward fender. And it really was quiet out there with a little hint of a breeze murmuring through the trees.
It’s a strange year, to be sure. I remember a few years ago when we walked through a snow storm in early August a little further along this road on the Grand Pass Trail on Lillian Ridge. I’m sure that we might make it back there before this road is closed again.
Mon, Jan 30, 2012
A pleasant surprise and a lost art
Wed, Nov 2, 2011
On this summer, global warming and facial hair
Fri, Sep 9, 2011
A summer almost gone?
Mon, Aug 1, 2011
The origins of trail names
Wed, Jul 6, 2011
Where exactly does spirit reside?
Wed, Jun 1, 2011
Where to begin?
Wed, Apr 6, 2011
Considering cougar cuisine
Wed, Mar 2, 2011
The folly of resolutions
Tue, Jan 18, 2011
A place of uncommon beauty
Tue, Jan 4, 2011
Christmas: What does it all mean?
Tue, Dec 21, 2010
A spiritual advisor
Wed, Nov 10, 2010
Understanding personal gifts of everyday people
Tue, Oct 26, 2010
So, after you've done it all, what's left?
Wed, Oct 6, 2010
The context of place
Wed, Sep 22, 2010
Revisiting old friends
Wed, Sep 1, 2010
Paradise is all around on peninsula
Wed, Aug 18, 2010
The wonder in waterfalls
Wed, Aug 4, 2010
A walk in the park does the soul good
Wed, Jul 21, 2010
Trying to explain
Wed, Jul 7, 2010