Hello friends and Happy New Year! When I look back on this past year, I think of what I accomplished and what I wish to accomplish next year. I think the biggest thing for me in 2018 was climbing all those Sierra Peaks! I made 12 trips to mountains as high as 11 thousand feet! Yep, next year I hope to make it at least 15 if not 20! I also plan on doing a back packing trip in the High Sierra in 2019.
I also decided to learn new things in 2018. I started studying Geology, Astrology and a little Sciences of the Cosmos thrown in. Hefty subjects, I KNOW! But as my mind ages, I figure I better do some heavy lifting to keep it in shape. Rocks and stars have always intrigued me as I hike mountains and see ancient lava flows and look up at to the vastness of space on my ranch where there isn’t much light to obstruct the view of our galaxy. Just what else us up there? What the heck is going on down below? I have so many questions!
And in the very end of this year, I am re-learning how to pencil draw. I’ve been painting in acrylics since 2012, but this year I thought I’d go back to where it all began as a high school student. Pencil. I was so good back then, but for some reason, I stopped. So, in the video below is a timelapse video of me drawing Legendary Actor, James Dean and the story of my re-learning something with something special thrown in at the end.
Have a Happy New Year, and I hope you do something you’ve NEVER done, or Re-learn something you used to do!
As I was training for a big Pacific Crest Trail section hike, I decided to see how many mountains I could get to the top of! The section hike was cancelled because of forest fires, so I continued to climb peaks. I hope to climb even more peaks next year! I have new goals!
It’s been a horrible summer for a lot of people in California. Many homes lost, firefighters killed, thousands evacuated for days on end. My big PCT adventure is on hold as the smoke has choked out the Sierra and the Valley and my ranch! I’m so over summer….
On August 7th of this year, three women decided to take a trip on their horses from Tuolomne Meadows in Yosemite to Donner Summit. The trip was supposed to be 200 miles. However, after day 5, with equipment failures, terrain that is not horse friendly whatsoever, snow, and the extensive time it takes to pack and unpack each day at camp, they fell behind and knew they would be ending the ride for this season sooner than they planned.
Did this discourage them? Heck NO! They are going back next year armed with experience and lessons-learned to continue where they left off. I plan on hiking behind them filming each step of the way.
If you are debating weather to traverse this section of the pct on horseback, take a look at this film.
Three friends, four horses and a lot of guts! These women traversed 76 miles of the Pacific Crest Trail from Tuolumne Meadows in Yosemite to Kennedy Meadows North. It was a HUGE snow year for the Sierra, and hikers had a difficult time in this very stretch. Some came close to death and one did lose her life. This same stretch on horses is almost impossible. As the PCT is said to be made for horses in mind, in reality it’s not as these women soon found out. The full documentary will be coming soon!
I was supposed to meet up with some lady PCT horse riders in the Sierra for their re-supply but they are two days behind because of snow and down trees in mid August! They are averaging about 7 miles a day. Getting over the passes is slow going for them. Hikers can get around these obstacles a lot easier than horses! They started in Tuolonme Meadows (Yosemite National Park) Aug 7 and was supposed to be at Kennedy Meadows North on Aug 13 (today). That’s not going to happen. So, with my plans for a mountain weekend on hold, I did this instead!
his is a cover song called Barton Hollow by the duo The Civil Wars.
In this episode of Twylaworld, we head to the Peter Grubb hut to deliver some trail magic on mile 1160 of the Pacific Crest Trail. While there, we meet a character long distance hiker that is literally working his way up the trail. We also meet a real thru hiker a hiker who hasn’t skipped any sections (she braved all the high Sierra this year) and is trekking her way North to Canada. We also find a lost day hiker. What a day! Oh and THERE IS SNOW lots and lots of SNOW!
Wow what a snow year for the Sierra! As it’s kinda putting a damper on my usual day hikes this summer with crazy water crossings and slushy snow fields, I’m relieved we have the water for our ranch! Take a trip with my husband and I as we fly over the Sierra near Donner Pass at 11 thousand feet in a Cessna 172 SP! We then head over to the coast (San Francisco Bay) where it’s completely fogged in!
The sites of the Sacramento Valley from Sierra to the Coastal Range is pretty awesome!
The Mountains are Good for the Soul
Weather you get out in the wilderness for a day or several months, Mother Nature is the best thing you can do to heal your soul. Even if you are physically unable to hike as I do, take a drive in your car to a serene lake and just chill for a while! You need this, trust me!
I’ve needed some healing for a long time. I needed to let go of the past and start living in the NOW. I’ve always been drawn to the mountains and the wilderness. It’s my cheap therapy. When I go into the mountains, I’m away from TV, away from social media, away from my cell phone, away from the noise of people, away from all of the bad news and trouble in the world.
I hike up to 8000 feet. My feet hurt, my legs hurt. Do I care? No. I relish the pain. I know this pain is only temporary and it’s the emotional pain that I’m forever releasing as I hike. With each step, I’m letting go of the past. I’m letting go of any guilt or hard lessons I hold onto. I’m letting go of a lot of baggage. I listen to the music of the trees, the wind, the chirping insects and the sounds of running creeks. These things are gifts to us from God.
Sitting in a mountain meadow with just the sounds of the Earth, my mind calms and reflects. I remember good times and forget all the pain. I reflect on some of the mistakes I’ve made and turn them into learning experiences so that I can move on. I think of all of the people that have come and gone in my life. I think of the possible people that I have yet to meet. I smile. I heal.