Thursday, May 24, 2012


Ward's spread at the picnic
One of the things the Senior Trailblazers like to do is party, as well as enjoy agreeable hikes together. Norm and his wife Gina have a lovely summer home on Cain Lake, not too far away and allows us to bring the two hiking groups together for a nice gathering to begin the summer season. Both groups also like to get a short hike in beforehand, so this morning we met Norm and Gina at the parking lot at Lake Padden. They took our contributions to the potluck and headed home. They fire up the grill and provide hot dogs and hamburgers, as well as a cake to celebrate the seniors who have May birthdays (five!), while the rest of us get a little exercise.
Although it was a little cool with a 30% chance of rain, we lucked out with the weather. Our nice trail, as  seen above, had shade and sun throughout the morning. We didn't walk around the lake but instead took the horse trails around the southern part of the park. Not all of the trails were as pretty as this, but there wasn't a whole lot of mud, so we were delighted; there have been times when those trails were not much fun to navigate.
I snapped this picture of Linda and Karen as they joined the regular trail around the lake after we had traveled somewhere around six miles on the horse trails. You can see the sign that indicates it's a horse trail; we didn't see any, or even any signs there had been any around recently. We finished our hike just before noon, piled into our cars and headed to Cain Lake. The other group went to Alger Alp and arrived a bit later. All in all, there must have been close to forty of us gathered at this lovely spot. I walked out onto the dock and got this picture.
We had much better weather this year. As you can see from last year's post, it was cold enough to be wrapped in blankets on the back porch. This year it wasn't warm at all when the clouds blocked the sun, but it was still pleasant enough for us to enjoy being outdoors, and Gina lit the candles on the cake that was cleverly decorated with a dinosaur. That's our other host, Norm, on the right wearing the apron.
In visiting my post from last year, I realize that the picture I captured a year ago of a barn swallow is much better than the one I took this year (their next-door neighbor has nesting boxes for them and they were everywhere), so I'll skip it. However, I am always asked if we ever see any wildlife. I was fortunate to see this scary creature at Lake Padden this morning.
With the summer officially launched, next week we will visit another old haunt before heading up to the Mt. Baker wilderness area the following Thursday. We will be hiking on snow for quite awhile, and whether or not we are able to make it all the way to our destinations doesn't really matter all that much, since I know we will be having fun and getting exercise in the company of good friends!


  1. how great that those 2 host all of you for a feast. i know everyone contributes, but still, to have 40 souls wandering around your home and yard and deck. :) nice!

  2. Sounds like a great time was had by all! Glad the weather cooperated for you this year. The trail looks good. Cute picture of that scary little bunny!

    It rained like crazy earlier today, but the sun came out this afternoon.

    Looking forward to hearing about the next adventure

  3. wow you had a good crowd today...and good eats as well...and a nice work out...loving all the green...there is no symbolism in the dinosaur is there...smiles.

  4. Walking on flat terrain! My kind of walk.

  5. What a fun experience. I'm trying to watch what I'm eating and that big chunk of meat in that hot dog bun was almost more than I could look at. I love that bunny.

  6. As Linda already pointed out....flat terrain, it's the first thing I thought, when I saw the path ;)
    Just look at that plate of food, delicious and lots of it, and cake !!
    What good times you have with your hiking friends, so much in common, and a love for all things nature..
    Life doesn't get much better than this.

  7. Nothing like a little food to bring everybody out. Hiking is pleasant anyway but when you get weather that is just right it's awesome.

  8. I like the bunny. I've been seeing rabbits in our neighborhood again in the evenings after a long time of not seeing any. so far they have not found our vegetable patch.
    That trail in the first photo looks like my kind of hiking!

  9. Good friends and good food, it doesn't get much better. I think it's wonderful that you all get together at the beginning of the season.

    That is one ferocious looking critter in your photo DJan. Better be careful in those woods. :)

  10. Blogger ate ny first attempt to share a thought, so I'm trying again.

    It looks like you had wonderful hike and a delightful picnic. (Better than jumping out of airplanes — at least for this Bear.) About the dinosaur cake: is that how old people were feeling, or just a joke at the expense of some senior hikers?

  11. I love parties! So happy you all had a good time today, DJan. That cake looks delicious!

  12. All your hiking blogs make me so envious. I love walking and the scenery surrounding your walks looks great. Food waiting when you've finished - wow!

  13. Good friends sharing a pleasure, followed by good food (another pleasure). It doesn't get much better than that. I am glad that the weather was kind for your picnic.

  14. The folks in your area seem to get on with life and enjoy it no matter what kind of weather you have. It's always inspiring to find people enjoying themselves. The cake looks yummy.

  15. Hot dogs...grilled on the open fire. Can't beat that!!! And the I've said before, your area is so darned verdant and lush with trees and beautiful scenes. But, that scary 'monster' wildlife did jolt a few goosebumps on my arms as I scrolled down while reading.

    40 hikers...must have been a stupendously fun time.

  16. I liked your post on bird watching with the cute photos. We watch birds here but I don’t know all their names.
    I watched the video DJan – so wonderful and uplifting! To be in the middle of this joyous crowd on your wedding day… something even more fun to remember.
    “Servicing” your blog… I like that. I only service mine once a week or after 5 days if the post is short – but they usually are long and I also like to read all my commenters’ blogs – like your blog. I would not want to miss any of your posts as they are all so interesting and I love to watch your photos of your treks into the mountains, even if it hurts my knees just to read how far you walk!
    You are so with it DJan – I still cannot use the “smart” phone I bought months ago – I need to study it, but I never find the time or the inclination. After reading your post Thinking about Thinking – me thinks I really need to learn the new techniques.
    Your picnic looks fun and the cake delicious. Here the cake would have melted… it is supposed to be 91 today (and I don’t know how hot in the sun!.)

  17. I always look forward to your posts. I know I will get a good read and some fine photography as a bonus. I was not disappointed this time. A little of both.

    I feel some gnawing coming on — not so much for human food but for a sighting of a Sasquatch or Big Foot. I am sure he is out there watching you who hike through his territory.

    To him and his family and dozens of cousins, lined up like a Saturday night football game, the sight of you all crashing up through the wilderness must be like watching the bottom half of Elvis Presley gyrating like we didn't get to see on the Ed Sullivan Show.

    Be on the lookout of Big Foot on your next adventure.

  18. What a huge group! The hike looked dry and sooo green! Love the bunny!! You picnic platter looks delicious. What a great bunch of hiking friends you have. :)

  19. What a beautiful view from they party house! Gorgeous.

    Glad you had a nice day and cake too! What more could you ask for :-)

    xo jj

  20. This is so fabulous. WOW, hosting a feast for 40 wanderers - that's just too nice. I love the photo you took from the wharf. lovely trail and no mud - great forest photos and so happy you included wild life. ha,ha
    That plate of food looks yummy to me, and the significance of the dinosaur is.......? Dino Hikers...Pioneer Walkers...Seasoned Foot Walkers - for all the Dinosaurs in the group. ha,ha
    Great post. Loved it.

  21. What a fabulous summer home. I am very jealous. 8-)

    Just want to thank you for your lovely comments when you stop by my blog. I know people are coming by, the stats show it, but I wouldn't know because so few people leave a comment. I appreciate you taking the time to do so.

    Happy hiking with your lovely friends.

  22. That picnic looks delicious. I could eat that anytime!
    I also liked the look of that first picture's trail. That's my sort of trail - nice and flat!
    Love the bunny rabbit.
    You are a party girl, aren't you D-Jan.
    Enjoy the summer!

  23. Dear DJan, do you read Kari's blog? It's called

    The reason I ask is that last Wednesday she posted on friendship and I thought of you and your group of fellow hikers as I read it.


  24. That hot dog is HUGE! And that spot for lunch looks just perfect. What a great way to usher in summer!

  25. Love your beautiful photos of the Pacific Northwest. My sister lives in Port Orchard, Washington. Look forward to your future posts w/beautiful nature photos.

  26. Nice place to gather! Such a pretty place on the lake. You are fortunate to have found this group! :)

  27. These are such gorgeous photos but my brain kept going back to that delicious looking super long hot dog burnt just how I like it. Yum!


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