April 29, 2017
Hiking Results . . .
If you found your way to last week’s blog then you know my week was beginning last Sunday with a hike led by Ranger Em. We did the Herring Cove Trail that leads to Beaver Lake. It’s a steep incline (okay, steep for me!) for the first mile or so and you reach the lake after approximately a mile. Beautiful walk around Beaver lake and then mostly a downhill trail as you return the way you came. Given the varying skill levels, (them – all fast and skilled; me – slow and unskilled but absolutely determined!) we took our time (yes, they were waiting on me most of the time) and enjoyed the beauty of nature.
Ranger Em brought Lady along. What a great trooper she was, always making sure we were all together. She never went too far ahead and never left anyone behind. I was so impressed with her. Here we are all together.
There was a beautiful waterfall as we headed uphill. My picture does not do it justice but I’m including it anyway.
We arrived at the lake and worked the trail around it. Two of our friends actually were brave enough to take a dip in the lake. I took their word for it when they said it was cold and did not feel the need to verify or question their assessment.
As we walked around the trail we came across a bear print. Now that was incredibly interesting. Look at the size of it!
The trails are really well maintained here in Sitka. I cannot imagine walking this trail without the aids from all the work of those who manage them. I thank them where ever they are!
Now, to my personal assessment of hiking which I know you are dying to hear. I’m so glad I had my phone to take pictures. Honestly, by the time I made it up the first mile I was grateful I could still breathe. My calves were in a controlled scream. My eyesight was a bit glazed and yet I was not about going to be left behind. I tried to keep up (you know how I hate admitting defeat) and they were all so very gracious to assure me that I was not slowing them down. Some of the pictures were my only memory of that specific spot on the trail. Would I do it again? Yep, in a heartbeat. There was another hike on Friday but I didn’t go. My calves screamed for all they were worth from Monday to Wednesday. Thursday we visited Castle Hill and walked up several flights of steps. Again my calves went into controlled scream mode and I knew then that the hike on Friday should go forward without me. I’ll go later . . . I need a few weeks to rest and recouperate!
The rest of this past week was daunting at moments. So much to see and do. We combined classroom work with visits to local places like The Raptor Center and the Sitka Sound Science Center, learning more about each of them. These are must see places when visiting Sitka so we want to make certain we are informed and can inform our visitors as well.
We also brought out the period games that are used during the Russian Bishop House open times. Most of you will remember the cup and ball games but they also have a game called Graces. We tried it out one afternoon.
As I walked to work one morning I was watching the water as I always do. There, from the Sitka Sound Science Center Hatchery were two fellows doing something in the water. Not sure what was happening but I could not resist a picture.
The first large cruise ships arrive this Wednesday and Thursday. They expect about 2,000 guests per ship to come and visit the park and the Russian Bishop House. Rest assured I have lots to do on my talk between now and Wednesday.
Until next week, be safe and remind those close to you how much they mean to you. You can never say it too often.