Talapus and Olallie Lakes

35mm film! it's been a while. so long, it's now much harder to even develop it! by chance, i picked the very same week local pharmacies are having their machines packed-up forever!... this will be a pain later i'm sure.

in the past two weeks or so i've hiked about 16 mile with sara, she has a goal of 100 miles this summer! and while i'm not goal oriented in this endeavor, i like tagging along for the sites, and you know, exercise. sometimes i try to do crunches and/or push-ups at home, but honestly it feels like my soul is dying. i hate it. but getting outside and walking trails for 4 hours? yes! i can do that!

maybe this hike was unusual for me, because our attraction of the day were lakes, not ruins! lake are pretty great too... this was an 89% humidity colder day with the little bit of rain that hit over the weekend. i dressed in a sundress and cotton cardi... silly, i was freezing at first! i was thinking about all the other hikes we've been up to, and how sweaty we were getting, not that kind of day on saturday!

along with two other hiking accomplices, Miss V and Jeff, we tackled Talapus and Olallie Lakes. A pretty hike, but a lot more popular that what i'm usualy up for - way too many people for my tastes.

Iron Goat Trail

If you were to ask yourself what your heart and soul really crave, what would you say? What makes you light up and wish you could live in the moment forever?

For me, it’s a never ending adventure and photo-bug. I love getting in the car and just going! And I adore creating memories in photographs. My kind of adventures are surrounded in woods, staring off at crashing waves, finding what has been lost and imagining little houses back in their day.

The past few week my good ‘ol car has been acting up, which has been making me feel all too limited. I’m trying to stay frugal (well this is hard…) while I continue my house hunt, and buying a new-to-me car wasn’t part of the plan, man! Maybe it’s an easy fix, maybe it’s not, and either way car stuff isn’t my thing, just as endless patience for thifting isn’t a lot of other folk’s thing.

Come this past Sunday (yesterday!), when Sara asked if I wanted to go for a hike and inquired if I had any spots in mind… yes, yes I do! We hopped in her zippy little speed machine and off to The Iron Goat Trail! (Last visited on my birthday, I said I’d be back!)

This time we started via Scenic Trailhead, a middle entry point (last time I started from Martin Creek). The hike began with an exhausting elevation gain in the first mile, but after that, you find yourself in the middle of hypnotizing railroad ruins! Miles of old snowshed walls from the abandoned Great Northern Railway. And finally, Wellington, the site of one of the worst train accidents in US history. Where an avalanche took out two trains and 96 souls in 1910. After the incident, the thick concrete walls and snowshelds were built to prevent another winter catastrophe. These are the ruins we walked.

Nature has reclaimed much of the site, another prime example of the beauty of decay. As you walk along the great walls (often marked with their construction dates of 1914-1916) you find yourself in fields of wild flowers surrounded by translucent winged butterflies. If that isn’t enchanting enough, you’re also surround by Mt/ Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest.

Somehow we accidentally walked 8 miles! I say accidentally because we didn’t really plan how far we might walk… but it was just so captivating! I’m glad I had I chance to see the rest of the trail.

the 4th

Of course you found me out on the water this weekend! With this heat wave in the Northwest, I figured I wouldn't be able to make it through the 4th of July solely on land... So Anthony and I drove to Steilacoom, to be picked up by my family's 1968 Owens cruiser :)

As soon as you get out on the water, you'd be amazed how refreshing it is! Always more of a breeze -not to say we totally beat the heat, I was covered in sweat and sunscreen for two days! We spent most of our time at the Longbranch Marina past McNeil and Anderson Islands. A strong community based Northwest boaters paradise. Nothing fancy, but shade from the blazing sun, friendly faces, and inlets to explore! You know how much I love looking for old broken things :)

Across the water we revisited an old cabin, I haven't been there in four years! Sadly the raccoon pelt was gone but it was just as fun. I insisted we didn't need to bring phones when we took the dinghy out, and of course the motor was quite finicky... But we had ores, so I started rowing us back! A few painful minutes later (I mean, I was having fun! I think Anthony just couldn't bare to watch me anymore... Turns out I'm not a strong rower) he was able to start the dang Engine, and we returned to the main dock!

We walked up the road to check out the cemetery, look for more abandoned little houses, and up to Gracie Mountain. A parcel for sale that my father has named after his dog. (That also features an excellent view of Mount Rainier)

Longbranch is also a great marina for the holiday because of all of the rival families around the inlet. At least five groups setting off the biggest fireworks they could get their hands on! A little scary initially, I'm not one for big booms... But a good show at the end of the day all the same, and away from big crowds, I detail not lost on me!

We slept on the back of the boat, open to the shooting stars. We were only a little dewy in the morning, and the dog kept us warm all night. I think she was mad at my dad for subjecting her into all of the fireworks!

and on our way to "Gracie Mountain"

The next morning we headed to Lakebay marina. A charming joint I feel like I've watched grow up! Well… It's been an old soda shop before, but a new owner has brought an exceptional life back to it! I miss how ramshackle it was circa 10 years ago... But it's great to see such a cool property being loved again! We stayed longer than we intended due to an electrical issue, old boats! We made it back safe and sound though.

Tonight I'm exhausted! A little bit dehydrated, and a little bit sunburnt, but dreaming of our next outing already :) it's good to live in the great Pacific Northwest.