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OK, this post is WAY overdue, but I've been busy.

You will recall that Bliss, Coba and I went backpacking in the Sierras in the last week of September. Our party contained one other member, a tiny plush African wild dog belonging to Kyn. I've never taken a plush into the wilderness, since I hate getting them dirty, but Glyph weathered it well and had fun. She was awfully nice to have along.

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Glyph ascends )
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More Sierras in late September. I love this one because of the reflection of the mountain in the lake.

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many more )
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Marie Lake was one of the most lovely I've seen.

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more )
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So, I am freshly returned from a week solo backpacking in the Ansel Adams portion of the Sierras. (well, solo save for my merles). It was glorious and I needed it a lot; this summer has certainly posed its challenges both emotionally and financially, and I just haven't been able to get away before now. Still, there's something incredibly special about being in the mountains in fall. I am so lucky.

Also glad to be back. Miz Kaya is licking the inside of my ear and making happy bird chirring noises at me, and as she is being gentle with her wickedly sharp parrot beak, I'm letting her for the time being. Unfortunately, Gavin plucked all of the damned contour feathers on his breast out, since he wasn't allowed out of his cage in my absence. I need to figure out something else to do with them when I'm away.

I brought y'all back photos! Lots of them; I will probably cut this into a few posts.

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First couple of days of pictures )
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Here in this forest, the soil is dry and the tan oaks are coming back, recovering from the disease that has ravaged them for several years with soft, fuzzy new growth. It was overcast this morning, and the tops of the redwood and doug fir I am currently staring at are moving restlessly with the first breaths of Autumn. Another year is getting ready to turn.

Elsewhere, the mountains remain high, remote and rarefied.

Here are the rest of my backpacking pictures, Ansel Adams Wilderness...was it barely over a week ago?

Bird people, I need help with another ID. I think he's some sort of warbler; he's, uh, several pictures down, somewhere in there.

The Minarets
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many photos )
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Hey all, I'm back.

The trip was amazing and beautiful. We saw all kinds of weather, including a thunderstorm which had us essentially hiking up the mountain into a cloud, and wildlife, including a perfectly gorgeous mother bear and her cub, who unlike most bears one sees stuck around long enough to allow us to observe them for a few minutes. Being there was very fulfilling, healing and excellent, and the place has an enormous beauty that these pictures only nibble at the edges of.

Back home, I am, as predicted, busy and dealing with some very difficult things. As you can probably guess, I took approximately elevendy zillion pictures, and I will eventually share more, but for now, here's a taste.

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Ansel Adams Wilderness )
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Taking off for the Ansel Adams Wilderness with [livejournal.com profile] starchy tomorrow; this is certainly my month for being in the mountains. All things considered, the best place to be.

Coba and Rogue, faithful pack shelties, will be in attendance; Jez is once more staying behind to keep her brother company. Unfortunately, Pryde's health appears to be deteriorating even more. There will be some difficult decisions to be made upon my return.

Chaos is growing like garden weeds...and teething. He has his very front ones, and I think his rear carnassals; the puppy fangs look tiny and silly in his strong muzzle. Of course, this means he is teething, and he and I are in constant conflict over the baby tears plants that I don't want him touching, but he thinks feel just lovely to tear apart.

On the other hand, watching him chew a stick of firewood is all kinds of hilarious. The little beast is now tall enough that the shelties can walk under his belly (I know, this post should have pictures) and is beginning to look something like a collie. It's all pretty adorable.

I will be back in a week, bearing photos.

Adopt one today! and Adopt one today! must grow up today or spiral into pixel-dragon demise and oblivion; Adopt one today!, Adopt one today!, Adopt one today!, Adopt one today! and Adopt one today! have got a little time yet.
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Back from a truly fantastic week in the mountains. It certainly did me a world of good. [livejournal.com profile] nesting and her dogs were excellent trail companions, the weather was great (even during the thunderstorm) and the beauty of the place eludes description.

And there are lots of pics; this post may kill your dialup. The DSLR is an extravagantly heavy toy to carry on a backpacking trip (and we both had one; between the two of us I hesitate to imagine how many pics came out of this trip), but it was worth it. Snake lovers in particular take note!

So hopefully I'll be a lot calmer for awhile. I am still overwrought about Osbick, but---it happens, I guess. I gave him the best care I could, I make a point of staying educated as to how, and he seemed happy with me. I just wish I could have known him better and for longer.

Trucker drama is also averted, thank goodness. Mom has yet a different living situation now and doesn't want Trucker back any more. If it comes up again, it will be even easier for me to just say she's settled into my home and is now my cat. Which she is.

Trucker, for her part, has been granted leave to explore the house, but so far has shown no inclination to leave the bathroom. My existing cats are not thrilled with the idea but haven't bothered her, probably because her attitude towards dogs and cats alike can be pretty much summed up as "if you stay about a cat-length from me, I will ignore you completely, but any closer and I will kick your ass in a very serious way." None of my animals have ever had to fight for resources in earnest, as you'd have to in a feral cat colony, and are pretty taken aback about how quickly and efficiently she enters and leaves butt-kicking mode.

So here's where I went.

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mountains, wildlife, dogs )

Packing

Jul. 29th, 2009 10:42 pm
summer_jackel: (coy face beautiful/serious/sad)
I'm leaving on a backpacking trip with [livejournal.com profile] javachickn on Saturday, and I am looking forward to it rather a lot. My heart hurts, and I need to disappear into the mountains for awhile.

Rogue saw the packs come out and knew immediately what it meant; she gets this alert, excited, serious look to her. Coba and Chaos were blithely unconcerned. Boy, is the parfait in for the surprise of his life. (He has a blue backpack and tiny black booties to shield his paws from the granite. It's adorable. He has no idea what it means). Wilderness trips really connect me with my dogs, and improve all of us.

Chaos is, of course, far too young. I'm trying very hard not to let Pryde and Jez know I'm going; they wouldn't understand being left behind for their favorite thing. Jez isn't going because Pryde can't, and I don't want to leave him alone for a week. (The puppy does not count). I also have to admit that while Jez could probably do this trip, she might get too sore for it to be really enjoyable for her; she is ten, and is slowing down. It is a reasonably ambitious trail, lots of elevation with a couple of high mileage days. I guess she will go on the shorter trips from now on.

Life is about change and beauty and sad.

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