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Friday, March 22, 2019

Our Most Adventurous Osha Trail Hike

Elk cow with an injured right rear foot
A little sad news before we got started this morning:  we watched an elk cow browse on our property and noticed she had an injured back right foot that was bent backward.  She spent a lot of time at our place before finally heading off.

We had decided yesterday to head up to Cloudcroft to hike the Osha Trail--one of our favorites in the high country--and we pretty much expected to find some snow and ice remnants on the trail above 8500 feet.  We were not mistaken.  We were surprised, however, at how muddy some sections were, so bad, in fact, that we couldn't avoid them on narrow sections of the trail.

What we did not expect to encounter, though, were several significant tree falls that almost effectively blocked our progress, and at one point we seriously considered turning back.  Being the lunkhead I am, I found a way for us to get through the first tree fall, though the way forward was somewhat perilous for Becca and Dr. K.  We ran into several other lesser falls during the last third of the trek, but nothing as bad as that first one.  On the last leg of the hike we saw a man with a hardhat and heavy backpack a short way down a side trail, and I called to him:  "Are you with the Forest Service?"  He said he was, and I told him of the difficulty we experienced crossing that first tree fall.  "That's why we're out here," he said.  I gave him a thumbs up, and said, "Thank you."  A short while later we heard the sound of a buzz saw chewing through fallen tree trunks.

After our adventurous trek we headed up to the village to do a bit of shopping at the Family Dollar store, buying drinking water, apple juice, soup and Halls Mentho-Lyptus cough drops.
She was browsing alone on our property this morning

I smell elk

Morning light in the Sacramentos

One of many observatories in the Sacramento Mountains

From our driveway

View from our yard

Our backyard

On the Osha Trail

Former tree

From the Osha Trail

Old railroad trestle over Mexican Canyon

Mexican Canyon trestle

Artsy tree shot

Becca enjoying herself

Tree shadows

Becca leading the way


White Sands from the Osha Trail


The altitude for the above two shots

B&W trees

Turkey Vulture

Spring hasn't yet sprung in the high country

Expected snow on the trail

Snow and ice

Major tree fall caused us significant problems

Worst tree fall we've ever encountered on the Osha Trail

Dr. K not enjoying crossing over a fallen tree

Clear skies in the Sacramento Mountains this morning

Remnants of snow

Becca just off the Osha Trail

Quaking Aspen trunk in B&W

Aspens and pines

Ahead on the Osha Trail

Waiting for the pokey hikers

Is someone coming up behind us?

Or is it simply the wind blowing through the trees?


Our happy hiker

Getting close to finishing up the loop

Enough said

One last look down canyon

Cowboy (right) and Champ

Champ:  the blackest of Black Labs

Dr. K petting a happy Champ

The face of a happy Black Lab

1 comment:

Dr. K said...

It was a very adventurous hike, and I'm glad we all made it across those fallen logs. Beautiful photos, especially the black-and-white ones.

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