30 June 2011


We planted strawberries around our plum and dogwood trees last year, with the (false) hope that the dogs would stay out of them.  They are not in raised beds, so of course like most things in our lives, they have gone to the dogs, both literally and non-.  They are also one of the Scrub-Jays' favorite meals.

They are one of Banjo's favorite places to run after she catches the frisbee.  She also loves our neighbor's dog and spends time pacing at the fence trying to go play.  And now that Bandit is off his long-line, he has discovered that there are so many new smells over there.

But despite all the trampling by the dogs, pecking by the birds, and damage caused by slugs, they are doing fairly well.  Every day, I pick about a half cup to a cups worth of ripened strawberries.  They are so sweet, I love them. 

Mostly, I just eat them whole, but earlier this week, I made some lemonade with strawberries.  So good. 

Now, if only these clouds would go away, so I could sip some ice cold lemonade in the sun like a real summer...

07 June 2011

Shi Shi Beach to Lake Ozette

This post will help any of you interested in doing this 3 day coastal hike.  Thanks to Langley and Ruth, we have some amazing pictures from our most recent trip.  Willis and I accidentally left our camera at home.

While planning for our Memorial Day weekend trip, Langley suggested going to Shi Shi Beach, in the Olympic Peninsula.  After some searching, I found Kevin Yang's posts about this trip.  Due to certain restrictions around permit reservations we decided to do the hike backwards, starting at Shi Shi Beach and ending at Lake Ozette.  It was an amazing and kind of challenging hike.  Lots of steep trails with rope assists to climb, seaweed covered rocks to scramble, and one river to ford (plus some other wading depending on the tides).

Prior to doing this hike, we needed to get*:
- a Makah Recreation Pass (since some of the hike is on the Makah Indian Reservation) - purchased at the General Store in Neah Bay
- a Wilderness Camping Permit as well as make a reservation  - you can call ahead and pick permits up from the Olympic Wilderness Information Center (WIC) in Port Angeles
- a hard-sided bear canister (if you don't already own one) - you can rent them from the WIC.
- a tide table - also available at WIC.  This is important because you can only pass the headlands when the tide is low.  You don't want to get caught at high tide.
- a map - you can get one from REI.  Almost always essential for backpacking new areas, a map is a good way to find water sources.

*On our first day of hiking, a park ranger stopped us to make sure we had our permits and bear canisters.

What we should have also made sure to have:
- water shoes - I had my Chacos.  Everyone else waded in their hiking shoes.  Although I had no problems with my sandals, it would have been nice to have close-toed water shoes, like Keens, while wading along the rocky coast or fording the river.