Fun day ahead today. I'm taking off to the mountains in a couple of hours. The trip will include driving the road up the Trestle Creek drainage and a stop at Lunch Peak lookout. From there, some back tracking and then a trip down the Lightning Creek drainage to Clark Fork.
This journey will include some spectacular scenery, but the best part is that my mouth and ears will be in full motion the entire trip. I'll alternate on the listening and the talking cuz this is the day my friend Chris Moon and I get together for our marathon visit. We were originally planning to take the trip completely around Lake Pend Oreille, but I decided to scale back a bit.
Chris seemed pleased when I suggested the new itinerary yesterday. After all, she spent a summer living at Lunch Peak and calling in smokes or fires to the U.S. Forest Service. She told me yesterday she hasn't been up there in years, so she's rarin' to go. We both spent a summer doing traffic surveys and laying out traffic counters in the Lightning Creek area.
We've got lots of material to cover on today's drive because it's been a few years since we had a good visit. Topics will include families and mutual friends. In both cases, that's a lot of material. We'll probably devote a few minutes to our mutual Forest Service buddy Vern Eskridge who died recently. Both Chris and I thought the world of Vern.
He was one of many fine people with whom we worked while employed summers with the U.S.F.S. And, we'll certainly devote some time to our close friend Susie Baldwin. It's been a while since either of us have seen or heard from her, but that makes no difference. A bond was created years ago, and those bonds are eternal.
I hope Susie's ears are ringing sometime today as we wind our way up the mountains or take a stop to snap a few photos. Last I heard from Susie several months ago, she and her hubby had headed off to Africa for a three-week safari. I think that trip came after she sold her dressage horse for a fistful of dollars.
In the midst of this busy week of seeing family and friends, I've managed some time to work with my little Lefty horse. What a trooper!
Last night's success was aided by locking up Miss Kiwi who insists on positioning herself along the edge of the round pen with half her body (including her head) inside the pen. I also filled up a low spot in the lunging path. Lefty seemed much more willing to walk, trot and canter without having to avoid the earlier obstacles.
I've never seen such a willing animal. He's loved humans since Day One and will do anything to maintain human contact. So far, I'd call him a star pupil. We'll see what happens when I climb aboard one of these days. For now, I'm thrilled with his quick and impressive progress.
My brother Jim from Oregon came by last night as Lefty and I were working in the round pen. He brought along a motorcycle and had taken some back roads into Schweitzer from the Colburn side. I think he's looking forward to doing some more exploring of the back country during his visit here.
And, Willie and Debbie didn't get quite enough of huckleberrying. Once Debbie was off work yesterday, they came by, borrowed the Jimmy and went straight back to the huckleberry patch where we had been picking on Sunday. They picked to their hearts' content and felt bad leaving all those bushes still loaded with berries.
So, again, it's not nearly as dismal as earlier reported. I think the berries are just coming later this year.
Enough twitterdeedee. Time to get the posies and veggies watered and get on with the fun day ahead.