Elk and Summit Meadows, Mt Hood, Oregon, and ‘Tour de Craft’ (18-29)

Elk Meadows trail  7/13/18 (Hike #41)

We started this hike on a hot day. The shade of the forest didn’t really take the edge off and my “condition” has been affecting me this week.

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By the time we started up the eight long switchbacks, about a mile and a half into the hike, I realized I was never going to make it to the top of the hill. We decided to turn back. I had been hoping to see bog orchids and gentians, but I did see the mountain blue bells for the first time this year.

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Lots of other flowers along the way:

Meanwhile, we braved the log crossing on the Newton Creek twice.

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Here is a “real” cairn doing a cairn’s job – marking the trail to the log crossing.

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Zooming in on Mt Hood’s Newton/Clark Glacier:

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Today we only went 3.2 miles, 500 feet. Last year we made it all the way to Elk Meadows and saw all the flowers.

Summit Meadows

We stopped and poked around in this meadow off the Trillium Lake road on our way home. We have skied or snowshoed this road a few times,

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November 2017

and always wondered what the meadows would look like in summer.

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I think we are late for the bigger bloom, as the paintbrush were faded, but the pink spirea along the road were lovely.

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Paintbrush

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Aster

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Spirea

I zoomed in on Mt Hood for a closeup view of the ski area above Timberline Lodge.

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Tour de Craft

I have only dabbled in spinning, so can’t really participate in the Tour de Fleece, but I do love to watch the Tour de France – for the views of France, and the drama and the stunning athletic effort that goes into these races. We DVR the coverage, then watch/fast forward through in the evening while I knit or quilt.

I have made a lot of progress on my Welcome quilt – I was planning to whip it together quickly, but I keep getting new design ideas….but that is the point for me – to play with the fabrics till I am satisfied and have learned something new by trying something new. Fun.

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And I finished the first Cornwall sock and cast on the second.

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Garden

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Red, White and Purple at Three Corner Rock, WA (18-28)

Three Corner Rock   4th of July, 2018    (Hike#40)

This easy hike follows the Pacific Crest Trail south from the 2090 road in Gifford Pinchot National Forest. The beautifully maintained and graded trail switchbacks up a ridge lined with a variety of summer wildflowers. DSC06569The last 3/4 mile is on a rutted red access road which goes to the saddle – and to the volcanic pile of Three Corner Rock that is holding down the ridge from blowing away on this windy July 4th.

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We scramble part way up the rock to a windbreak and have lunch – only one of our hiking party braves the blast to scramble all the way to the top.

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Meanwhile, we admire our five volcano view: Jefferson, Hood, Adams, St Helens, Rainier, along with views of the Columbia River all the way to Portland to the west. This was a good place for a lookout back in the day!

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Mts Hood and Jefferson beyond the cell tower.

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Mts St Helens, Rainier and Adams.

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Silver Star Mountain

Among the flower palette are tons of red paintbrush, white bunch berry, and purple penstemon – nothing blue blooming up here today.

Other wildflowers – some are first sightings this year:

The map and June flower comparison is on my blog post from last year. 4.4 miles/1200 feet.

We stopped in Cascade Locks on the way home to buy fresh salmon for our 4th of July barbecue dinner.

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Bridge of the Gods over the Columbia River.

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Native fish market at Bridge of the Gods. The burned skyline shows how close the Eagle Creek fire was to Cascade Locks.

CRAFTING

Pinwheel Quilt completed and just waiting for baby:

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Fabric baskets for a sister’s birthday:

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I started a quilt for the Welcome Blanket project:

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Lookout Mountain hike (18-27)

Lookout Mountain, east of Mt Hood   June 30, 2018   (Hike#39)

Walking through High Prairie,

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Lots of purple shooting stars and yellow cinquefoil

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Heather

up a gentle grade through the forest to the ridge punctuated by red volcanic soil and a pinnacle.

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Views of Mt Hood all along the ridge:

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The top of Lookout Mountain comes into view:

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From the top, views as far south as Broken Top,

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Broken Top, North and Middle Sisters, Mt Washington, Mt Jefferson, Badger Lake, and a resident chipmunk.

and north to Mt Adams with lenticular clouds.

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Mt Adams

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Mt Adams

The eastern high desert:

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Plenty of flowers, but there will be more! based on our past visits. 3.9 miles/800 feet.

Crafting:

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Pinwheel quilt basted and ready for quilting.

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Jane Austen’s House emerging in cross stitch.

In the Garden:

 

Some quilting! and Chinidere Mtn hike (18-26)

Quilting!

I started the Pinwheel Baby Quilt I am making for an expected family member.

Chinidere Mountain    6/22/2018     (Hike#38)

This trail starts at Wahtum Lake, on the upper end of the Eagle Creek fire zone. The area has been off limits since last September, but this particular trail recently reopened to public use. Connecting trails down Eagle Creek are still closed.

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6 miles/1200 feet

The trail immediately descends down 250 steps to Wahtum Lake.

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From the shore we can just see the rocky promontory that we are hiking to – Chinidere Mountain.

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(Photo taken on the return trip after the fog had lifted)

We continued on the Pacific Crest Trail around the east side of the lake, through an area with several hanging gardens and lots of flowers.  The Chinidere cutoff at about 2.5 miles switchbacks up the side of this rocky promontory that stands above the forest. When we arrived, the top was still covered in fog and a cold wind swept the spine of the mountain.

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Approaching the top

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Cliff penstemon

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Summit

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Flowers, fog, wind

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Mt Hood beyond the clouds

Just 10 feet away we could sit comfortably in the windless sunshine and enjoy our lunch, hoping for the clouds on Mt Hood to lift.

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Wahtum Lake from the summit

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Wahtum Lake after the clouds lifted

Below us to the north, we could see the mosaic burn of the upper part of the Eagle Creek fire.

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Brown areas burned by the Eagle Creek Fire

As we headed down the trail we walked out onto the ridge viewpoints to admire the wildflowers growing in the sunny rocky meadows and watched the clouds blow across Mt Hood.

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Lots of wildflowers today – lovely.

 

By the time we drove down the road the mountain was free and clear!

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Lookback:

On a clear day we could see all the volcanoes, north and south, from the top of Chinidere Mt.

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June 2016 – Mt Hood and Mt Jefferson

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June 2015 – Mt St Helens, Mt Rainier and Mt Adams

 

 

Jane Austen Day! Part 2, Winchester (18-25)

Winchester Cathedral,       April 30, 2018

We drove the 20 miles from Chawton to Winchester to see the cathedral. After finding parking in the narrow winding streets of the cathedral town, we walked a few blocks toward the cathedral.

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Walking toward Winchester Cathedral entrance

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Interesting wall in the courtyard

The enormous size and architectural details on the outside of the cathedral are amazing:

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North side of Winchester Cathedral

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Closer view

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Passage under the flying buttresses

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Main entrance, Winchester Cathedral

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Exterior stonework

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Gargoyles

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Entry detail

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Entry detail

Once inside, we continued to marvel at scale and detail beyond comprehension: the high ceiling, the carved stone and wood, the arching windows.

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The main aisle

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Detail of upper windows

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A side aisle

As a quilter, I was especially drawn to the patterns in the medieval floor tiles.

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The Jane Austen exhibit had placards describing her life and the monuments that have been installed in her honor near her grave.

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Jane Austen window and monuments in Winchester Cathedral

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Jane Austen’s grave

 

Building stone:

Walking back toward our parking space, I particularly noted the texture and stone in the walls along the street –

which brought to mind the chalk and flint cliffs we had seen at Seven Sisters:

Chawton

Back in Chawton, we stopped for dinner at the local pub, The Greyfriar,

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then spent another night at the Garden House B&B, formerly a gardener’s cottage on the Chawton House estate, though thoroughly modernized since that time. The setting up on the hill was lovely, the gardens were flowering.

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Garden House B&B

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Sheep!

We just happened to be here during a storm so didn’t get to explore much of the outdoor beauty, but all in all it was a satisfying day! Tuesday we were off to our next stop – Lyme Regis, to see fossils and the steps on the Cobb where Louisa Musgrave fell.

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Jane Austen Day! Part 1, Chawton (18-24)

Day 5, Part 1:  Monday, April 30, 2018   Chawton

My top goal when planning this trip to England was to see Jane Austen’s house and quilt. The plan was to walk around Chawton to see her house, the large mansion and church at the center of her brother’s estate, and the gardens and paths in the area where the Austens would have regularly walked while living here.

Jane Austen’s House Museum

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This red brick house in the heart of Chawton holds many items that belonged to Jane Austen or her family members, as well as other pieces from the Regency period that create the ambiance of her daily life. Signs explain what was original and what changes have been made since her time. The tour is self guided, with knowledgable docents that answer questions.

Timeline and Family Tree:

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Furnishings:

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Jane Austen’s writing table

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Jane’s Father’s desk

Wallpaper:

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Portraits:

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Quilts:

Seeing the original quilt was a highlight of the entire trip. Having spent the past five years making a reproduction of this quilt, I really appreciated being able to sit in the room and admire the colorful though faded fabrics and tiny stitches, and think of the three pairs of hands that sewed this masterpiece. I considered the many hours involved in choosing fabrics, cutting, stitching, and keeping track of the quadrilateral symmetry of placement of all those tiny diamonds (more than 2500). More detailed information is available on the museum website.

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Center medallion

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Two community-made tribute quilts completed in 2018 are on view – a paper pieced patchwork quilt placed on a bed,

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and an appliquéd topical quilt honoring aspects of Jane Austen’s life and work:

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It was difficult to get a good photo of this quilt because it is hanging in the room showing the video of Jane Austen’s life, but thorough documentation can be found on the museum website blog.

Jewelry:

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Kitchen:

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View out the bedroom window:

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Gardens:

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After making a few purchase in the gift shop, we went on to:

Chawton House

We walked up the long drive to Chawton Great House,

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now used as a museum and center for women’s literature and writing workshops. We had a delicious lunch in the tearoom,

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then walked through the house. The textile furnishings in the dining room were colorful.

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The upstairs docent showed us this nook where Jane Austen used to sit and write while visiting family.

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From the windows we could see the surrounding land and the adjacent church.

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St Nicholas Church

The church next door is where the local families attend services. Jane’s sister Cassandra and mother are both buried in the churchyard here.

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St Nicholas Church

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Graves of Jane Austen’s mother and sister, both named Cassandra.

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Unfortunately, the weather continued blustery and rainy, so we abandoned our plan for a walk and drove twenty miles to visit Winchester Cathedral and Jane Austen’s grave. To be continued in the next blog post…

Cape Horn again, June 16th, 2018 (18-23)

Cape Horn Trail, Washington,  June 16, 2018,  (Hike # 37)

We hiked the upper section of the Cape Horn trail, from Strunk Road to the Waterfall Overlook, with stops at the Nancy Russell Overlook. The last of the larkspur and lupine were hanging on. Prolific flowers were cow parsnip, tiger lily, candy flower, columbine and penstemon. 3.5 miles, 600 feet. Previous hikes: May and November, 2107.

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Upper trail

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Into the woods

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Tiger lilies and cow parsnip

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Waterfall

The views:

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East along the Columbia River toward Beacon Rock

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West toward Sand Island

The flowers:

CRAFTING

I’ve turned the heel on the first of the Cornwall socks:

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I began the Jane Austen House cross stitch kit, a souvenir from my visit there in April.

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GARDEN

We have planted tomatoes, basil, jalapeño, cucumber and parsley – time tested and always consumed in our household.

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Garden flowers in bloom:

Starvation Creek again (18-22)

Lower Starvation Loop Hike, June 10, 2018      (hike #36)

We did this hike in early May last year, in the rain, with rainbows, and with early spring flowers. This year it was still a bit rainy, but we managed to hike on a wet weekend when Mt Hood actually received more snow! We saw the late spring flowers – always interesting to see what blooms next. And our daughter, temporarily home from college before heading off for her summer adventures, joined us. I got to practice my uphill in a steep section, but the hike was much shorter than last week. And I don’t think my new treatment regimen gave me any setback at all, so Yay!  (3.2 miles, 800 feet)

Views from the high point:

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East – Columbia River and trailhead parking below

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North to Dog Mtn

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West, Wind Mtn, no rainbows this year

Cabin Creek crossing, a fairy glen:

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Photo shoot with Dad:

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Wildflower suite:

Wet foliage:

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lupine

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ferns

Waterfalls:

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Lancaster Falls

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Hole In The Wall Falls

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Cabin Creek Falls

Wildflower Lookback:

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May 2017 – monkey flower, rosy plectritis, blue eyed Mary and shooting stars in the meadow

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June 2018 – dry meadow

CRAFTING

I finished cross stitching the Elgol scene, and removed the guidelines.

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Next I will decide how to frame it. And get started on one of two new cross stitch projects waiting in the wings.

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I find the focused attention of counted cross stitching soothing these days. I also ordered fabric to make a baby quilt for our niece.

England Part 3 – White Cliffs (18-21)

Day 4 – Seven Sisters/Birling Gap April 29, 2018

We took a train from Victoria Station to Brighton, and there rented a car for our next two weeks of adventures.

Our first stop was Birling Gap, East Sussex, on the English Channel. We took a short walk along the South Downs headlands toward Belle Tout Lighthouse, and had good views to the west of the Seven Sisters chalk cliffs.

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Belle Tout Lighthouse

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Walking back to Birling Gap

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Seven Sisters chalk cliffs to the south

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Half of the near building has fallen into the sea due to cliff erosion.

We went down the cliffside staircase to the beach along the white cliffs.

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Bluebells!

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To the north – cliff edge with half missing building above

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South view from staircase

The cliffs are composed of Cretaceous chalk with flint bands and nodules. They weather to a gold color, but calve so often that they appear a beautiful stark white from a distance.  Up close, the texture is flint nodules in a chalky substrate, and the beach itself is composed of wave washed nodules.  I would notice these nodules later on our trip in the local building stone.

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Chalk/flint cliffs

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Nodules on the beach

We managed to stay just ahead of an impending storm. From Birling Gap, we drove back west to a B&B in Chawton, Hampshire. Tomorrow would be Jane Austen history day!

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Phlox Point in Bloom (18-20)

Hardy Ridge/Phlox Point, WA    June 1, 2018    (Hike#35)

This hike was my hardest yet, post surgery – 8.2 miles/2200 feet.  The first part is a road walk through beautiful forest along equestrian trails in Beacon Rock State Park.  Then steep switchbacks lead up to the saddle of Hardy Ridge where the ridge walk to Phlox Point is lined with flowers and views of the Columbia River, Mt Hood and Mt Adams. I thoroughly enjoyed the hike, but am still feeling the last 2 miles – it was just a bit long for my stamina. I am glad I did it, as my next stage of treatment begins next week, and I don’t know if I will have a physical setback.  And I love hiking through lush blooming wildflower meadows!

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Lower trail

Views from the top:

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West, Columbia River

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South, Mt Hood

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Southeast, Hamilton Mountain

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Southeast, Bonneville Dam

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East, Mt Adams, Table Mountain

Phlox Point ahead –

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North from Phlox Pt

Our first bear grass of the season:

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So much Indian Paintbrush!

I tallied at least 51 different flowers, not counting varieties of each.

Of note, lupine, larkspur, mariposa and tiger lilies, and nodding onions were mostly in bud form, and should be blooming profusely soon.

CRAFTING:

Just a bit of knitting, and I am down to cream and white on the Elgol cross stitch – filling in the empty spaces seems to be the best soother of my current anxiety about upcoming treatment.

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MEANWHILE:    The garden is almost ready for planting. And I have decided to add the England trip reports in separate posts.