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The Birthday Backpack Trip Is Over

But we have a new plan for Glampacking!

sunny 73 °F

Nate, Bekki, and Camilo hiked out early taking the 2 youngest boys. They left Dale, Zaya and I to pack up as we wanted and hike out at our own pace. But, before they left, Jasper found Camilo’s stash of pop-tarts. He had quite a smile on his face when he was caught eating them up.
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We were really tired of freeze-dried food and didn’t feel like cooking up a big breakfast, so we ate some snacks and started packing up. We took the time to enjoy our last moments of solitude.
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The hike out was, at least at first, a nice stroll. We didn’t hurry along until clouds started gathering on the north and western horizons. Then the winds picked up. We have backpacked enough to know when to pick up the pace and we did.

Zaya was really great, she stopped every little while, pronouncing each place beautiful and pointed out some point of beauty. She was so glad to spot the Mulshy Meadow from the mountain, later pointing out where she thought that they had camped.
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We ran out of water before the trailhead and it was quite warm, not to mention that my pack was super heavy. We were so happy when we saw Nate heading our way with a water bottle.

As we walked out, Dale and I discussed some new ideas for backpacking. We have decided that we will either hire people to carry our stuff or hire someone with a pack service with donkeys.

We told Nate about this plan and he had thought the same thing. He knows someone who does this with donkeys and thinks that the donkeys carry about 100# each. Do you know how much fresh, good food, and equipment I can pack in 100#? Talk about Glam-backpacking! I’m there!!!!

Posted by Miss Chris 18:39 Archived in USA Tagged nature hiking backpacking outdoors family_backpack_trip high_sierra back_country eastern_sierra grandkinds Comments (0)

Birthday Backpack Trip, Day 3

The lost family arrived in time for the birthday party

sunny 75 °F

Nate and family did not show up on Sat. We didn’t know if they couldn’t find us, or if they didn’t make it up to the area at all.

In the meantime, Lucian, our older grandson, woke up with a fever and sore throat. Justin decided that we should hike out.

Dale and I talked and decided that we did not want to hike out and go home. The weather was hot at home and we’d planned to stay until Monday. We gave Justin our extra items, took all of the leftover food and his stove. We had 2 backpacker meals plus the little bit of freeze-dried foods. We also kept the box wine and the port.

Dale and I were eating lunch when I caught sight of Camilo coming down the hill. We yelled to him and waved, sure enough, we were found. Then along came Zaya, she ran, throwing off her hat, sweatshirt and backpack as she ran. Lots of hugs, but more importantly they were out of water and thirsty and we had plenty.
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After Zaya and Camilo reported that Bekki and Nate were completely out of water, Dale took off with containers of water and met them along the trail.

Nate and Bekki, with kids in tow, and you must know that the kids walked nearly the entire way; Emilio age 5 and Jasper age 3, arrived at the camp. Kids kicked off their shoes and ran down to the meadow to play in the water.
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For dinner, we had fusion Mexican-Pho soup and Quesadillas made with Nate’s Sonora wheat. Then it was time for the party, a Twinkie birthday cake. As we didn’t want to set the forest on fire we did not set out 74 candles.
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As for Nate, Bekki, kids and Camilo, they didn’t take the turn onto the Pacific Crest Trail but instead went down a steep trail to another side of Mulshy Meadow. They thought that they saw lights from us but it was someone else. Hence, the delay to our campsite.
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Next backpack trip we are taking a good map and making sure that we are all on the same route.

Posted by Miss Chris 08:54 Archived in USA Tagged nature hiking backpacking outdoors grandkids family_backpack_trip high_sierra back_country eastern_sierra Comments (0)

Last Day in Bryce Canyon

Walking the Rim Trail

sunny 85 °F

Kids woke up early and got dressed quickly. They were not going to miss out on another breakfast at the Bryce Canyon Lodge. And we did make it in time.

We have been spoiled by the lodges in the National Parks: El Tovar at the South Rim of the Grand Canyon, Crater Lake Lodge, Princess Lodge in Alaska, Old Faithful Lodge in Yellowstone, Many Glacier Hotel in Glacier National Park and Banff Springs Hotel in Canada. We have not stayed at most of these hotels, only had meals. The Bryce Canyon Lodge was good but not in the same league as the other lodges. It was fun, and kids were impressed but to us, well, we expected more.

We went back to the RV, changed clothes then hopped onto the shuttle to walk the rim walk. The rim walk is a partially paved walk that extends from the hotel to the campgrounds. Note that there are no handrails except at the lookouts.
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We walked from the hotel but only made it to Sunrise point where we caught a shuttle back to the RV. We drank nearly all of our water and as it was getting quite warm out and water was not available for about another mile we cut the walk short at 1.5 miles.
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Along the trail were many beautiful views of the canyon. In a forested area, kids stopped to play on downed trees. They stopped to count the rings of one tree and Lucian gave a little lesson on reading the life of the tree. Kids then looked for bugs under the bark of the downed trees, jumped and played.
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We stopped for last-minute souvenirs, then packed up the RV and started for home. Another successful grandkids trip completed.

Posted by Miss Chris 17:38 Archived in USA Tagged road_trip nature hiking national_park outdoors bryce_canyon_lodge grandkids grandkids_travel rv_travel grandkids_trip rv_adventures gmc_truck gmc_sierra bryce_canyon_national-park Comments (0)

Hiking in Bryce Canyon

We took the grandkids for a hike thru the hoodoos

sunny 85 °F

We’d planned to leave early for Bryce Canyon, to beat the heat over the steep stretches of Hwy 191. Of course, we didn’t pack anything after our campfire dessert and didn’t wake up early.

The trip to Bryce took about 8 hours, including bathroom stops and a lunch stop. We did beat the worst of the heat and the stretch south has a shorter uphill, but the downhill is steep and long. Best to let the engine do the braking if possible.

We didn’t have a campsite reservation at Bryce Canyon and were a little concerned, however, there were many sites available. Many sites are sloped but most in Loop A are a pull thru making it easy to park.

After running amok, the grandkids settled in for the evening.

Wednesday morning all of us slept in late. Grandkids ran, hiking up to the top of a hill. They ran back yelling that they saw the entire canyon. They had found the rim trail.

We were really tired of being on the road so it was nice to stay put while kids made up games like “hit the rock across the picnic table with sticks, making mud structures, and playing walking talkie. Fortunately, we were within walking distance to the Visitor’s Center, so picked up Jr. Ranger books, and watched the movie.

Thursday was our big day. We’d decided to go to breakfast at the Bryce Canyon Lodge then hike down into the canyon. We got dressed and drove to the Bryce Canyon Lodge arriving at 10:15, only to find that the dining room closed at 10am. Kids were not happy campers.

We ate breakfast at the RV and then hopped on the shuttle to Sunset Point for our hike. The hike we wanted to take the kids on was the Navajo loop taking the cutoff at the bottom to the Wall Street trail. We’d read to hike counterclockwise but the aide at the top of the trail recommend hiking clockwise. As we walked down the trail we saw that the Navajo trail was steep and in the sun. We were glad that we’d checked beforehand as the Wall Street was much shadier and had a breeze. Several people hiking up the Navajo trail were in trouble with the heat and sun.
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https://www.nps.gov/brca/planyourvisit/basicinfo.htm

Kids ran down then up the 1.5-mile of trails, but I hoped they looked around at the beautiful hoodoos. Hopefully, they will remember this trip for its unique beauty.

Posted by Miss Chris 19:58 Archived in USA Tagged road_trip nature hiking national_park outdoors grandkids grandkids_travel rv_travel grandkids_trip rv_adventures gmc_truck gmc_sierra bryce_canyon_national-park Comments (0)

A Day With the Dinosaurs

A day in Dinosaur National Monument

sunny 90 °F

The drive from Cedar City was hot and long. We’d forgotten how long of a steep grade we had to drive over. If you are planning a trip over Hwy 191 into Vernal, then just beware and be prepared.

We arrived in Dinosaur about 6pm, found our campsite and unpacked. We had thought that it would be nice and cool but alas, it was very warm. Fortunately, the evenings cool off nicely. After dinner and a campfire, we turned in for a much-needed sleep.

Monday morning, we got an early start. We wanted to go on the ranger-led hike at 10am and then visit the Quarry site. There are other sites I’d like to visit and photograph, but it will need to be another trip.

We got to the Visitor’s center in time to buy forgotten hats before catching the tram to the top of the hill. The quarry, where Dino’s were discovered, is at the top of the hill and the hike is out of the quarry area.

https://www.nps.gov/dino/index.htm

The Quarry is the hill where Dinosaur bones were discovered and taken from and then others exposed. A building was built along the hill protecting the exposed bones and allowing for inspection by the public.

The ranger-led hike goes down into the canyon from the quarry. One goes forward in time, from when an ocean was covering the area. Wave prints are visible in the rocks as well as exposed dinosaur bones from 150 million years ago. It was great for the kids to get a visual experience in reading time in the rocks and seeing a real deposit of dinosaur bones.

On our hike was the man and his son who were camped across the road from us. At the campground, we’d said hi and kids had played some together. On the hike, we got to be better acquainted.
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We finished up our hike, and the plan was to find a picnic table, finish up the Jr. Ranger books, eat lunch stored in our electric ice chest in the truck, get Jr Ranger badges and a couple of souvenirs, then go back to the campground.

Great plans foiled again! We found that our built-in inverter had stopped working so the food in the ice chest was getting warm. Then we realized that the sandwich bread had been left back at the RV. So much for sandwiches!

We ate some pieces of turkey and cartons of yogurts then went into the visitor’s center for the Jr. Ranger badges and a little souvenir. Kids chose small magnifying glasses and Emilio, dino toys.

Starving, we piled into the truck only to discover why our inverter quit. The battery was completely dead. Dale tried to find someone to give us a jump while I went into the Visitors Center to see if I could get us help in there. Alas, I was told to call Emergency Roadside which was all well and good except that my phone was at 1% and our AAA card was back in the RV. Fortunately, another GM truck owner came to our rescue, gave us a jump and we were on our way.

Arriving back at our campsite, our new friends, Zac (the dad) and Benjamin (the son) came over. Benjamin came to play with the kids and then dad (encouraged by us) brought his camp chair and chatted.
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Benjamin ate some additional dinner with us and Zac brought over their smores makings. Around our campfire adults drank wine while kids gorged on smores.

Posted by Miss Chris 16:26 Archived in USA Tagged road_trip nature hiking outdoors grandkids grandkids_travel rv_travel grandkids_trip rv_adventures gmc_truck gmc_sierra dinosaur_national_monument Comments (0)

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