Saturday, July 16, 2016

Difficult Trail Hike

The title of this post is somewhat misleading, as is the name of the trail that we hiked on Friday.  Just about 4 miles east of their house sits Difficult Campground, so named because it sits on Difficult Creek.  I've not been able to find out the origin of Difficult Creek's name, but, since it's been so named for some time, the campground and the trail carry the same name, as the trailhead for this trail is in the day use area of the campground.  Though there are some steep places on the 3 + mile hike up to the turnaround point, for the most part it's not as difficult as some of the other hikes in the area that we've done.  Anyway, it was a good hike nevertheless--through stands of tall pines as well as aspen groves, much of the way along Difficult Creek.  It's always nice to hike alongside a creek, the rushing water provides wonderful accompanying music to the adventure, as well as helping cool the air--we love it!  Not too many wide open vistas like in other hikes, but it was pleasant to be under shade and cooler than other hikes, as we got a later start in the day than usual.  Trisha had an appointment with an orthopedist that morning to get his advice on some issues with her knees.  Though she hasn't had serious problems, as we've been increasing our mileage in preparation for the Camino from time to time one or the other of her knees will catch or give out on her.  So we figured the best course of action was to have an orthopedist check her out.  They did X-rays and then she had the exam and consult with the doc.  He said it's just a matter of some arthritis coming on, with some slight roughing of the cartilage.  He advised getting a cortisone shot shortly before we head to Spain, but nothing more than that.  It was a big relief to know that there is nothing too serious going on, and this sounds like a good course of action to follow as we continue to train.  So, this hike was a good one for us to do that day.  Shelley and Ken had to take their car to Glenwood for some service, and that took up most of their day.

So Sophie came with us again on this hike, and we took Davi as well, since we all knew he would enjoy hiking a lot more than sitting in a car dealership all day waiting for the car to get serviced!  Sophie loved the hike, though she was definitely walking more slowly than she had on the Lost Man hike a couple days earlier--guess she was still a bit tired.  But it was fun, and we found a lovely spot right by the creek to have lunch.  Davi of course wasted no time in getting down into the creek to cool off.  Sophie wanted to join him, but given how her coat does, we had to keep her from getting completely soaked.  As it was, the lack of rain in over a week was really obvious--the trail was dry and quite dusty for most of the way.  Since she is so low to the ground, she's like a little mop, and was pretty dirty by the time we came off the trail, plus she had picked up lots of bits and pieces from the brush along the way.  So I spent a good long time giving her a bath and combing her out once we got home.

Had a very casual dinner downtown, enjoying strolling around the mall area, where lots of restaurants have outside tables in the mall, lots of folks out enjoying the wonderful weather and having fun.  A family with two little girls had a lot of fun visiting with Santa, too!  Always fun.

This was from Thursday morning, when I hiked up the Ute Trail before anyone else in the house was up.  Great hike!!
 Looking down from the top of the Ute

 Took this pic on the way back down--this tree is really unique, with its base right on the edge of the trail and then bending over, making this cool arch!
 Sophie taking a little snooze in Mama's arms!
 Difficult Creek, at the start of our hike on Friday
 Trisha leading the way, Davi making sure she's okay before he turns around and circles behind me, to make sure I'm keeping up!

 My Happy Hiker!!
 In the pine forest

 Hard to pass up taking pics of all these beautiful wildflowers!
 And my other Happy Hiker!!
 Looking out through one of the few breaks in the trees as we went up.
 And looking down on Difficult Creek

 Lunchtime splash for Davi!
 and a Cliff Bar for Santa!

 Me and the pooches!

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