Thursday, November 13, 2008
In one of my first posts, I wrote about our dog, Thor, that my son brought home after finding him in a bad situation and very sick. It will be 2 years next February since he came to live with us. So, what's changed?
First of all, he is now MY dog. Jeremy (my son) has now accepted the fact that when he finishes college and moves away, Thor is staying with me. He's turned into a big "Momma's Boy" as Jeremy says, and follows me around the house when I'm there. He's now so spoiled that he cries when he doesn't get his way. He is set in his routine that includes a morning walk (no matter what the weather) and a mini massage every morning. Even my husband, who was always adamant that he would never live in a house with a dog, is now catering to Thor's every whim and even takes him to the park occasionally to see the ducks. I would have never believed that would happen.
Thor went to the vet today for his check-up where he spent the entire day while I was at work. His doctor said he's doing very well. He received some vaccine boosters that were due and had his nails trimmed. I understand that he found a girlfriend while he was there (a German Shepherd), so I'm sure that made his stay a little more enjoyable for him. In any event, he was still ready to go home when I got there.
We love having Thor as part of our family and hope he's with us for many, many years to come.
Tuesday, November 04, 2008
First, an update from my last blog regarding the person who had fallen at Pilot Mountain on Sunday. I saw on our local news that it was a 25 year old man who was free climbing and slipped and fell over a ledge. Fortunately, they said he is in stable condition at the hospital and is expected to fully recover. I was so glad to hear that he should be okay.
Well, the days are getting shorter and the time has rolled back. That means that darkness will prevent me from getting to Pilot Mountain or Hanging Rock after work in the evening to do a hike. So, what to do? My instinct is to do what the bears do; curl up in the evenings, sleep and live off my fat! Only problem is I won't make any progress doing that and would more than likely gain even more weight. So, I can hike on the weekends, but through the week I have to fit in some other form of exercise. I decided that I would force myself out of bed early in the morning and head to my basement to take a walk to nowhere on my treadmill, and I WILL LEARN TO LOVE IT. Okay, that may be a stretch to say I'll love it, but in time I will learn to accept that this is the way it will have to be through the winter months. With this in mind, I jumped out of my warm bed this morning at 5:30, put on my sweats and eagerly ran downstairs to my basement. Actually, it was more like I slowly pushed myself out from under the warm covers, grudgingly put on my sweats and meandered slowly to the basement where I walked on my treadmill and rode the exercise bike for 30 minutes while watching the news. Nothing too strenuous, but a start. Amazingly, it really wasn't that bad and I felt good afterward. I may learn to like this yet.
Sunday, November 02, 2008
If I thought the leaves along the Grassy Ridge Trail at Pilot Mountain were pretty yesterday, then the leaves on the Mountain Trail today were nothing short of awesome. My husband and I decided to do a circuit hike this morning of between 6 and 7 miles. The first section was on the Mountain Trail that climbs up Pilot Mountain almost to the top for an elevation gain of 800 feet. The higher we got, the more spectacular the colors were. I thought it was so exciting. Tommy (my husband) was less than thrilled with all the uphill, but I assured him that after 2.5 miles we would run into the Ledge Spring Trail and it would be smooth sailing the rest of the way. By the time we reached Ledge Spring he was looking, well, less than fresh :) He enjoyed the short and relatively flat walk along a section of Ledge Spring Trail, but then we arrived at the Grindstone Trail. At first he was excited because I told him it was mostly downhill, of course I forgot to mention that it is incredibly rocky (Pennsylvania has nothing on this section of Pilot Mountain when it comes to rocks). He soon decided that this was almost worse than climbing up Mountain Trail because, as he put it, I'm having to put on my breaks the whole way down. So, approximately 2 miles later, we arrived at the campground where we took a quick break and then walked along the road for about 30 minutes to where we were able to jump on the Grassy Ridge Trail that would eventually lead us back to our car.
The only downside to the day was that during our hike down Grindstone Trail we heard several ambulances or emergency vehicles going up the mountain. When we got to the main road in the park at the ranger station, we saw that they were stopping traffic from driving to the top. We were told that someone had fallen, possibly one of the rock climbers. Unfortunately, it seems that every couple years someone either gets seriously hurt up there or killed. We're just hoping that this time it turns out okay.
Otherwise, it was a beautiful day for hiking.
Saturday, November 01, 2008
My husband and I did a short hike this evening after I got off work at the spa. The leaves at Pilot Mountain are at peak color and I wasn't making good time because I kept stopping to take pictures. It was so nice that we've decided to go back tomorrow morning and do a 7 mile loop combining 3 different trails. I hope everyone is able to get out and enjoy some outdoor activities this time of year.
Friday, October 31, 2008
Yippee!! I LOVE this time of year! It's the best for hiking IMO (unless I'm in the southwest where they have that awesome low humidity). Okay, it's pretty in the summer, but it's a little hard for me to remember that I'm having the time of my life when I'm at war with the mosquitos and other flying bugs that seem intent on making a beeline for my eyes, nose, ears or mouth. What's that all about anyway? Then of course there's the poison ivy lurking around each bend just waiting to reach out and brush my legs as I pass by. When you're as allergic to this demonic little vine as I am, the mere thought of it can almost bring on a panic attack. Oh, and did I fail to mention the awesome humidity we have here in the southeast during those hot summer months. Nothing like peeling your pack off of your sweat soaked (and I do mean SOAKED) back at the end of your hike. So, it probably sounds like I hate hiking. Nope, just the opposite. I love it. It's my favorite outdoor activity. I love finding a trail where I can find quiet and solitude and get away from the stresses of the city. I just enjoy hiking in the fall and winter so much more because I don't have to deal with all those little annoyances (and they are really just annoyances). Another plus is that so few people hike around here in the winter that I often have the more heavily used trails to myself and don't have to go to the more remote areas to find some peace and quiet. Last Sunday DH and I headed to the Mountain Trail at Pilot Mountain, my first time on it since last spring. The poison ivy was dying away and we saw one other hiker. It was a great day. Then I went to hike the Grassy Ridge Trail at Pilot Mountain on Tuesday after I got off work. I never saw another person and the woods were beautiful with the leaves changing color. I can't hardly wait to get out and do some more hiking tomorrow!
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