Saturday August 25: Mostly sunny this morning and I sit outside for my quiet time. Have a good chat with my son Matt when I call to wish him happy birthday.
My daughter Merri
comes out to have lunch with us. She brings some fresh produce and
we make a good tasty lunch, eating out in the screen house.
After Merri heads
home, I play viola and read. Nice day except for the mouse we found
bumbling about near the steps. Mice are bad enough, but have to
wonder if this one has rabies or is somehow demented. Creepy.
Sunday August 26: Today Clifford and I go to Wallace again, as we have to get more stuff out of my daughter Katie’s basement.
We visit with her a bit and great to see the grandkids for a minute. Then Clifford and I load my car as full as we can get it. We are back at camp in time for a late lunch. The evening is dinner, dishes, and reading for me, while Clifford works on his projects. We run out of propane in the night, which is inconvenient, and catch four more mice, which is totally creepy.
Monday August 27: We start packing as soon as we are up, as we are leaving today. No showers or breakfast or hot tea, since we are out of propane. We are on our way about 11:00 a.m. and once we arrive in Missoula, we go to Cracker Barrel for lunch, Bretz RV for propane, Barnes&Noble for the bookstore fix and a latte, and on to the Walmart parking lot where we replenish supplies and spend the night.
Tuesday August 28: Since we have two vehicles – my car and Suburban towing Cougar – we leave Suburban and Cougar at Walmart and take my car to a music store in Missoula. I want to get a shoulder rest, but when we get there, the fellow working there doesn’t know how shoulder rests work, so he is no help to me. Instead, I end up with a shaped sponge, which I hope will help with holding the viola properly. It beats me how a city the size of Missoula, a university town with a good music department, does not have a properly stocked music store with knowledgeable clerks.
Back at Walmart, we
finish our shopping and then head out of Missoula, stopping at Bonner
for gas. Heading north on highway 200 to the Clearwater junction, we
then wind our way up the Swan Valley to the Seeley Lake Campground.
We find a roomy spot near where we were last year, but with more of a
view of the lake.
After we get set up,
I walk down to the lake, taking photos to share with family, while
Clifford gets his ham radio antennas up. It is so great to be here!
After a simple dinner, Clifford continues adjusting his radio gear
and I read until heading to bed.
Saturday August 18: It is less smokey this morning and very pleasant sitting outside writing in the journal.
Later, when the
temperatures warm up and the flies become bothersome, we set up the
screen house over the picnic table, giving us place to eat, write,
and play music without the pesky flies.
Sunday August 19: A walk in the forest is a lovely quiet time for me this morning.
In general, the day has the usual things going on: writing, reading, editing for daughter Ang, and taking photos (Carol); ham radio and CI Legacy Project (Clifford), with the addition of being stung by a wasp (Carol) and going bike riding around the two loops of the campground (both of us).
Monday August 20: It is hard to tell overcast from smoke haze this morning. In spite of the somewhat dreary sky, I walk around both loops of the campground. We are the only people here; even the hosts are gone.
In the afternoon,
there is a knock on the door and we are surprised to see my son Saul.
We invite him in and I make tea for the three of us. He is headed to
an organic farm and has stopped here to spend the night. We have a
nice visit and after he gets his camp set up, he joins us for dinner.
Since he travels a lot, we get out the atlas and share thoughts about
where he and we have been and where we all might be going in the
future. Maybe our paths will cross again.
Tuesday August 21: I walk about taking photos in the mist this morning. Then we invite Saul for breakfast and chat a bit more before he heads out.
Today I am going to Wallace to visit Katie and her family. Katie, her daughter Justice, her mother-in-law Sue, and I go to lunch. Really nice to visit with all of them. Being in Wallace also gives me a chance to go to the laundromat, my favorite second-hand store, and the market before I drive back over the mountain for a late dinner with Clifford.
Wednesday August 22: After my morning quiet time and breakfast with Clifford, I start cleaning out my car. Katie needs to have our remaining stuff moved out of her basement, so yesterday I put as much as I could into my car. It it is too much to take back to Monticello, so I will be sorting and getting rid of books and other items. I find it hard to get rid of books, but in reality, it is not likely I will ever have time to read all of them.
Later, Clifford and
I work on the back-up camera issue and find a spot where we can put
the receiver (adhered to an aluminum pizza plate stuck in the
bathroom door) so that the signal carries all the way from the back
of Cougar to the monitor on the Suburban dashboard. It takes a bit of
jury-rigging, but it works.
I finish the knit afghan for the newest member of the family, great-grandson Oliver. Bicycle, dinner, viola practice, and reading complete the day for me. Clifford continues with his projects and is up until the wee hours, as is normal for him.
Thursday August 23: It is smokey again and we have caught another mouse. Did it come with us from Bass Creek or are the mice a problem here? When camp host Susi comes around, I ask her about the mice and it does appear they have been a problem the last couple of years.
Today Clifford and I go to St. Regis again, as there is wifi at the Visitors’ Center. I send the completed Princes and Priests synopsis to Ang, while Clifford downloads a big music file. We have lunch at a cafe here, but it is not nearly as good as the meal we had at the $50,000 Bar&Grill earlier in the week.
In the evening, I
make plans with Rollie regarding a trip to Sun River (near Great
Falls, Montana) to visit my son Matt. Clifford will stay with Cougar
at Cabin City.
Friday August 24: I make coffee and sit outside for awhile before getting ready for our trip to Couer d Alene. I have another doctor checkup, and once that is finished, we run errands in CdA.
On the way back to our campground, we stop in Wallace so Clifford can help make decisions about what to do with the rest of our stuff in Katie’s basement. We fit what we can into my car and the rest will be given away. Katie is cooking steaks on an outdoor grill, but due to the lateness of the hour, we have to head back to camp rather than staying for dinner. She sends a juicy steak home with us, which we thoroughly enjoy.
Tuesday August 14: Today is moving day. Although we like where we are at Bass Creek Recreation Area in the Bitterroot Valley of western Montana, we are heading to Cabin City, a campground on the Montana side of Lookout Pass. This will allow visiting with my daughter Katie and her family in Wallace, Idaho, without pulling Cougar over the pass.
When we arrive at Cabin City, there is almost no one there, but the spot we would have chosen is already taken. Oh well, that is the way it goes sometimes. We pick another nearby spot that will allow both shade for the RV and access to the sunshine for the solar panels, a bit of a challenge in this forested campground.
After we get set up,
we have tuna sandwiches for lunch and proceed with our usual
activities. In the evening, the hosts, Susi and Tom, come around and
we chat with them for awhile. We met them here a couple of years ago
and discovered at that time that Susi is the youngest sister of a
really good friend of mine from high school days. “Small world….”
Wednesday August 15: Pretty light on the forest this morning, in spite of the forest fire smoke.
Today we are going to Wallace to visit Katie and her family; my son Saul is there, also, doing some work for Katie. My wellness visit is in Kellogg, just 12 miles down the road. The doctor at the clinic there was my doctor when we lived in Wallace and I still want to see her, but it will be the last time, as she is moving to Texas and I am one of her last patients in Idaho.
After the doctor visit, Clifford and I go to dinner with Katie and her friends. There are several conversations going on at once, so it is hard to talk to Katie to see how she and her family are doing. We’ll be back next week, so will visit more with her then. It is late by time we get back to Cabin City, but I read until midnight before heading to bed. Clifford, as usual, stays up with his projects until the wee hours.
Thursday August 16: Today we take care of the mail that we picked up in Wallace yesterday, having forwarded it there. Later, we make a trip to post office in St. Regis, the nearest town with a post office, and then dinner at the famous $50,000 Bar & Grill at the nearby Haugan exit. The food is plentiful and the gift shop has lots of fun stuff. I buy a top for myself and a T-shirt for Clifford, kind of a splurge, but worth it.
Back at camp, I walk about taking photos and then read most of the afternoon. While it might not be the most productive way to spend time, it good that I have the option to do just that.
Camping at Cabin City – June 29 – July 2, 2014
Clifford left on Friday to set up camp at Cabin City, luckily getting the spot we had had before that we liked, even though there were a lot of other campers here. He came ahead of me as he wanted to set up and participate in the ham radio field day on Saturday. He had a good time in spite of the rain and learned a lot about field day. There may be some interesting correlations with the chemtrail spraying and the ham radio signal quality and strength which would also apply to such things are HAARP frequencies, electromagnetic communications and weather control.
Since I’m still working at the store (Rocky Mountain Organics in Wallace, Idaho) I was not able to join him until Sunday evening. When I arrived, he had just gotten a campfire going – very nice, as the evenings do cool off and it had been rainy here much of the time since he arrived. Just as we got ready to have dinner, it started to rain again, but luckily it was short-lived and we were able to revive the campfire and enjoy heading out again. As the sun reached low to the horizon, the color through the overcast moisture-laden air created an unusual but lovely ambient color.
Monday was a gorgeous day… a wonderful sky with no chemtrails to mar the deep blue. An afternoon hike cross-country from our camp was sweet with the many blooming wild flowers: trillium, daisies, thistle, bluebells, buttercups, honeysuckle and others that I don’t their names.
In the evening I played my cello outside, to the delight of the neighboring campers whose little daughter was learning to play the cello. As the sun went down, cool air moved in and another campfire warmed our evening.
We drove up the road and parked at the trailhead along Rock Creek, which might be more aptly called Brush Creek. Even though our entire hike was along the creek, we seldom saw it due to the dense brush. As we hiked, we saw signs of wildlife: elk and deer tracks in the muddy spots on the trail and recent bear scat and many overturned rocks, a bear diligently foraging for ants. I sang a little bear song and when the thimbleberry became especially dense, Clifford got out his harmonica and played a few tunes. I have never seen so much thimbleberry; it was thick and tall, frequently as tall as me, obscurring the trail. Hard hiking for me, but at least the trail was relatively level.
I especially enjoyed the many wildflowers. In addition to the variety seen yesterday, there was also brilliant red Indian paint brush, honey suckle, delphinium just beginning to bloom, and many others.
Once we were satisfactorily hot and sweaty from hiking, we found a shady spot under a big old douglas fir where we found seat-size needle-covered rocks and a respite from the brush and thimbleberry. We enjoyed a little snack of an apple and a tortilla while we rested in the shade. The mountains behind us and across the creek from us are steep and often rock-faced. Clifford talked about some of the experiences of surveyors in these type of conditions, both his experiences as a surveyor and the experiences of others, especially in the 1800’s when the idea from the “powers-that-be” in the east ordered the surveying of the west in preparation for the settling of the land, having no idea that some of this land could not be settled. Some very hardy brave souls had taken on the task of surveying and one has to wonder how many of them were injured or died in the process.
Ice and food is running a bit low, as we had not originally planned to stay until Wednesday, but we come up with a good meal none-the-less and enjoy the evening by the campfire.
Wednesday morning – I make a little campfire, not so much because it is chilly out, but because I enjoy the comfy ambiance of it while I drink a cup of tea and write in my journal. Today we will have to pack up and head home to obligations, but we are grateful for the time we have spent here being in the outdoors and for the time to read, write, think, study, and meditate. And take photos, of course!