Monday, August 09, 2004

Weekend Round-Up

The weekend began with a trip over to TW and RS's new house, which is incredibly spacious. We then headed over to the Widmer Gasthaus, which B. and I had (incredibly) never been to. We waited at least 45 minutes for a seat, but we were all feeling pretty mellow about it. It was a good chance to catch up anyway. The hamburger I had seemed quite outstanding, but I could only eat half of it. Was it, perhaps, fried in butter? That would explain why I thought it was so good.

I cannot say that the service was good. TW's beer sat on the bar for a really long time before the waiter w. attitude decided to deliver it to her. In the end, their beer was comped, but still. Also, we were never given any water. I'm sure that's to encourage people to order more beer.

The next day that lack of water came back to haunt me. I never drank anything once we got home and then I had coffee before heading out at 8 AM for a hike. The whole way out to the ~ 10-mile, 2500 ft elevation gain hike, I had no water. Then I hardly drank much on the way up. Not surprisingly, I felt a headache coming on by lunchtime. Plus it was the tail end of my period, so who knows if much could have been done to prevent a headache.

The hike itself was glorious. It was the Mazama Trail, and I went w. the Columbia Singles. There were a few familiar faces as well as some new folks. Always a good group of people. Since last year, is seems some of them have actually paired off. So good for them. Anyway, the hike starts off in pretty, open forest and climbs for the most part not too steeply with some level sections. Eventually, we reach a sort of rocky area and then we head through alpine meadows with Hood looming straight ahead. I really think this hike may have my favorite view of Hood, although it was somewhat in cloud. I really don't mind; it makes it more atmospheric. I don't know if the flowers were at their peak, but we saw: beargrass, lupines, paintbrush, gentian, pasque flower, buttercups, pearly everlasting, and a few others.

We climbed a bit more to the McNeil Point shelter, a stone hut, on a ridge. However, the group had split up a bit and my little group somehow missed seeing the shelter and climbed a good several hundred feet higher than we needed to. Doh! Just as I was thinking that I didn't recall this steep climb up the ridge, we heard some hollering down below and turned to see the shelter and the rest of our group down there. We decided to go just a bit higher anyway since we'd already invested effort in getting to where we were and there seemed to be a veiwpoint just ahead. It is an incredibly view. Yocum ridge is right across. Hood is right there and there are glaciers and green, green, green, green slopes all around. Adams and Mt. Saint Helens as well as numerous other Cascade ridges are visible. I think the Mazama Trail is one of those hikes that should be done every August, along w. McNeil Point via Bald Mountain, which B. and I did last week.

When we got down to the hut, one of the guys pulled a watermelon (a small one) out of his backpack and started handing slices of it around! This guy won major bonus points from me because he also brought a cache of chocolate that he shared.

We hung out at the hut for almost an hour, which I found very enjoyable. Kristin brought her two golden retrievers and it was neat to see them enjoying themselves. There were a couple of people I didn't get much chance to talk to unfortunately.

We headed back down and I was more or less OK, but on the way home I started to feel crappier. I was in the backseat of a van and I was feeling carsickish and headachey. I switched seats and was a bit better off in the front, but still had to bag going out to dinner w. "the gang," which I would have liked to do even though it was Applebee's in the Gateway parking lot. It wasn't a huge sacrifice, really. They all say that Applebee's is good. I find that hard to believe, but who knows. One day, I'm sure I'll get the chance to find out.

Anyway, I couldn't get home fast enough. I took some headache stuff and took a shower and felt quite a bit better and managed to eat something.

Lesson Learned: On days that I leave for strenous, early AM hikes, do not have any coffee in the morning. Instead have a glass of ice water and make sure to drink plenty of water the night before. Also, perhaps take Gatorade with on the hike.

Yesterday, I felt pretty wiped out all day. Did manage to walk around Trillium Lake (2 flat miles) w. B. but that was about all I could handle. Very pleasant I must say though. Had that mini vacation feeling, because I had never been there in the summer before. The headache returned and is still with me today. So annoying.


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