Sunday, November 28, 2010

Black Friday Snowshoeing

For the second year in a row, I used the Black Friday occasion to do some snowshoeing. Due to a week of winter weather and cold temperatures, the Boise foothills had a good covering of snow so I kept the trip local. I opted to visit two minor summits in different parts of foothills - Peak 4375 near Highland Valley Summit and Peak 3793 off of Bogus Basin Rd (aka the Kristin Armstrong Bikeway).

I first climbed Peak 4375, starting from Highland Valley Summit near the Kodiak Grill (a restaurant featured on "Triple D"). I actually didn't even use my snowshoes on this climb, although it would have helped a little bit on the steeper parts. The snow was mostly ankle depth and quite powdery - rare snow conditions for the foothills! From the highway it is a fairly short up-and-down hike across multiple drainages to the summit. The peak has pretty good views of the surrounding area and there were lots of deer seen on the trip!

Peak 3793 is a much shorter climb and I took snowshoes on this one since it promised to be a little bit steeper. This was a good decision and it was easy climbing straight up the peak. This peak also had good views of a part of the foothills I rarely visit.

In short, it was a well-spent Black Friday. The downside is that this trip aggravated a minor case of tendonitis (achilles) and I ended up limping around the house by the evening. So I had to make a weekend shopping trip to get some new shoes and insoles... now I just have to hope it goes away!

Trip statistics (total): 2.5 hours, 3.75 miles, 1350' elevation gain

Black Friday Snowshoeing Pictures!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Thanksgiving 2010

We hope all of our readers had a great Thanksgiving, whether it be of the American or Canadian variety! We did too and we are very thankful for all of the greatness in our lives!

We began our day by watching the live webcast of Katie's brother Dave walking across the stage and receiving his BA degree from UBC. Congratulations Dave!!!

Afterwards Katie made a couple of dishes for dinner (from-scratch rolls and roasted asparagus) and I went running on the icy/snowy roads. We headed over to Gary and Bonnie's around 4pm and nearly wrecked the Escape on the way over! On an icy spot near Gary and Bonnie's house the vehicle totally slipped, turned sideways, and ended up on a sidewalk facing a tree. Fortunately neither us nor the car sustained any damage but we were very lucky there were no oncoming nor parked cars in the way! However we did lose a little bit of asparagus and a Fiestaware dish in the accident...

After our safe but eventful arrival, we had a great time catching up with Gary and Bonnie and enjoying the lovely dinner that Bonnie and Katie prepared. Dishes served include turkey, cranberry sauce, stuffing, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, corn, asparagus, rolls, and pecan bars for dessert. Mmmm! We headed home around 9:30pm and fortunately had no driving mishaps!

Thanksgiving Pictures!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Malheur County Highpoint Hike

Dan and I decided to embark on a Saturday hike but the weather wasn't looking too good. Southeast Oregon seemed to offer the best weather and the chance to visit an obscure, remote area. We met at 6am and began the long drive to McDermitt, Nevada, and thence to the trailhead. We managed to drive a little further up than we expected, saving us approximately 45 minutes of hiking. We were moving around 9:30am and started uphill through the very open terrain. The weather was initially in the upper 30s with no wind which was actually quite comfortable. As we got higher the wind picked up which, while brisk, was tolerable.

The terrain was very gentle, consisting entirely of open sagebrush slopes and snowy jeep tracks. The area is quite remote and while out of the wind we observed the rare sound of total silence. It is also a popular rockhounding area and we found some large chunks of obsidian which I've never seen anywhere else. The expansive views and undeveloped nature of the area were definitely the highlight of the trip.

We initially had thoughts of visiting some other peaks but the shortness of the day and worsening weather caused us to abandon those plans and head directly home. Once home I was able to watch the tail end of the "SEC East Championship Game"... sadly, the Gators lost to the Gamecocks.

Trip statistics: 9.36 miles, 2599' elevation gain, 6:07h

Malheur County Highpoint Hike Pictures!
GPS track
Dan's Trip Report