East Lake Family Vacation

This past weekend, for the third summer in the row, we all1I think we ended up with 20 of us — and 3 dogs! visited East Lake. Thanks to Kristi and Troy, we had an abundance of kayaks, a canoe, and a “relaxation station” to play with. Matt and Erica brought another canoe and a stand-up paddleboard. We all brought our swimsuits and sunscreen, though many didn’t use the latter enough.

Miska, Gilly, and Mousse enjoyed playing fetch and swimming in the water. Unfortunately, the beach was tough on their paws. We’re going to need to find a solution for that next time. Does anyone have a positive experience using dog booties?2If you haven’t done so, you must search for dog booties videos on the internet. High-stepping fun!

Some went to the obsidian flow nearby and everyone went to Paulina Falls. Every evening, we went to the beach to watch the sunset. The Whitewater Fire near Jefferson made a smokey sunset our first night, but slight winds from the east cleared up the rest of the weekend. The final night, the sunset was so intense that none of you will believe I didn’t edit the photo.

Of course, it was a great opportunity for a jump shot. The photo was a happy accident created by my holding down the shutter on my smartphone while others snapped away with their DSLs. One of my shots coincided with someone else’s flash and everyone in the air. Of course, that called for an animated gif. Heather and Gilly posing mandated another. ;-)

Lots of family, a few dogs, and hot weather made for a fun time. I wonder — will next year make four?

Family Day Trip to Arches National Park

A trip to Utah resulted in a day trip to Arches National Park. This is a quick summary of our short visit.

I added to my Roadside Geology book library as we entered the park. Then, after only one and a half trips through the lot, we lucked out finding parking at Wolfe Ranch and hiked to Delicate Arch. Somehow we managed to get off the path near the arch and had to backtrack. As we approached the top, many encouraged us, “It’s worth it!” They were right.

We took lots of pictures of the arch, ourselves, and even others. When a couple does the perfect jump, I had to record it and make an animated gif. :-)

Jump shot

Being hiked out, we stopped at Salt Valley Overlook and found a boomerang. We drove to the Garden Trailhead and stopped at Skyline Arch for a short hike and lots more pictures.

On our way back to the park entrance, we stopped at Balanced Rock, Courthouse Towers Viewpoint, La Sal Mountains Viewpoint, and some viewpoint just over the visitors’ center. I had to stop multiple times to take even more pictures of the sandstone cliffs as their massiveness spoke to me. :-)

All in all, a great, quick trip to Arches. We’re looking forward to our next visit.

Our Last Day in Cannon Beach

Today was our last day at Cannon Beach, at least for this trip. When we awoke, the day was gray, but there were more people walking the beach than yesterday when it was beautiful. We ate breakfast, cleaned up, packed up, and then took some group shots. The jump shots of just the kids worked out a little better than the ones we tried of all of us. Trying to have all of us jump at the exact instant the self-timer fired the shutter proved to be difficult

We walked along the beach into town, enjoyed a visit to Insomnia, visited some galleries, and ate pizza. Then, because Ashley and Carin arrived later yesterday, we went back to the tidal pools. The water seemed lower today, so we were able to visit rocks we couldn’t yesterday. ‘Course, I was also able to get trapped on a rock while a few large waves rolled in, the last one covering the rock I was marooned on, soaking my shoes and the bottom of my pants. The view of the sea stars was worth it, though.

Cannon Beach is a favorite destination of ours. We’re always looking forward to our next visit.