Sunday, May 06, 2007

Spring Break

Since you can't buy buttermilk in Turkey, I hadn't had pancakes in ages, so for three mornings in a row we made buttermilk pancakes over the camp stove, one at a time. It took Bryan an average of two hours to carefully cook the whole batch, using a special "wave the pan over flame" technique (after I severly burned the first couple of pancakes that ended up with soggy middles and a mild metal aftertaste, Bryan took over).

We went camping in Squamish for several days. It rained on us, but we got enough sunshine and a break from the wet to go rock climbing in the Smoke Bluffs for an afternoon. This was just a neat looking canyon through the granite.

This tree had fallen (with encouragement) from a rock face above and got turned into one of the coolest staircases I've ever seen - 50 stairs out of one log!

At climbing on one of the faces in Squamish

Bryan and one of the beautiful, raging waterfalls near the Chief.

The next day, since it was quite rainy, we decided to hike to the top of the Stawamus Chief. For those of you who don't know Squamish but are familiar with Yosemite, it's like taking El Capitan and laying it on it's side. The chief is basically a huge cliff of granite. We hiked up and around the back side of it to two of the three "peaks" (highest points - around 690 - 710 meters respectively).

It rained the whole time we were hiking, right up until the end when we were almost back at the trailhead. We didn't actually make it to the top of either of the two peaks we hiked too - the wind was blowing so fiercely we didn't want to end up flying over the shear cliffs off to one side, and it was cold enough that we didn't feel the need to clamber up the last 15 meters of bare rock. It was really fun and really beautiful!

Looking out at Howe Sound from the trailhead area.

The Chief (we were almost at those top bits!) from Squamish.

More photos of Howe Sound in rare moments of sunshine.

Part of Whidbey Island and other watery-green places in Western Washington, from a mountain.

Bryan overlooking Whidbey Island, WA

Rock climbing in Washington

For my Spring Break, I flew to Seattle where Bryan picked me up. We went to the Symphony and heard Bobby McFerrin sing, drove out to Port Angeles and went to church and stayed with his parents, took a ferry and drove up through Washington, visited Camp in Canada, went camping, climbing, and hiking in Squamish for a few days, and came back to Seattle in time for me to fly out a week later. It was a very, very nice break for me (no big cities! clean air! No traffic! fresh water! TREES! the outdoors!) even if it wasn't as exotic as going to Egypt (though safer and cheaper.)

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