Well, since the end of a weirdly temperate and rainy Yakima June that graced us with a terrifically green lawn and scenes like this,
we’ve returned to our normal beautiful sun-filled summer weather. A couple weeks ago we sizzled for a couple days with high temps around 106 F, but mostly we’ve been enjoying nice upper 80-degree days, giving plenty of opportunity to get outside and enjoy some Washington nature.
I somehow got Mary to agree to go rock climbing with me a couple weekends ago and we played around at Jayhawk for a couple hours. Here’s Mary topped out on her first climb (left photo), fiercely gripping the wall behind her. And here she is casually and bravely leaning out into the void 80 feet above the ground on her second climb (right photo).
Ha, just kidding, the one on the right is actually me. Mary climbed that route too, just not quite as high. Below left is me rappelling and pulling gear on that same route and below right is Mary thumbs-upping partway up the route.
Fourth of July weekend our view from the backyard changed a little when 500 acres of hillside went up in flames during the night. Sadly no photos of the fire itself as we slept right through it. Here’s a link to a Youtube video of the fire. I woke up around 5 am to the smoke smell and shut the house windows without thinking much of it until looking over the fence later in the morning to see the blackened hillside.
This past weekend we took Parko out in the mountains for the afternoon. About an hour from our house we pulled the car over near the turnout to Mount Rainier NP and hiked downhill through the woods toward the sound of rushing water. We ended up stumbling onto a beautiful little spot on the banks of the Cowlitz River.
Swiftly moving glacial blue water punctuated by giant boulders, backdropped by a canopy of evergreen. I’m always amazed by the consistency with which you can drop into these postcard moments in this state.
We followed the river south until we reached a National Forest campground then retraced our path back to car.
Since we were in the area we took a quick lap through MRNP. Neat cirrus clouds drifting over the mountain.