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Molly’s dad was hoping to get Molly some experience in his new canoe and I just wanted to enjoy some lake time before winter really gets started. Molly got very little experience and after jumping out of the canoe twice, she got to spend the rest of the afternoon in the truck. Next time I won’t be along to distract her. There were quite a few ducks, some grebes, a couple of herons and an otter to provide entertainment as we enjoyed one of the last nice afternoons.

Our dogs were invited to go a on walk to the river with our new little friend Red Molly last weekend. She is now nine weeks old and growing and changing so fast! In can you missed this post, you can see her at seven weeks old here.

Molly is happy, outgoing, inquisitive, smart and friendly. She quickly recognized Sky and Luna as dogs like her and was anxious to get to know them and their games better. Luna is more patient with the puppy. Sky is still learning how to act around her. I am sure that as the months go by, Sky and Molly will be good pals.

A couple days ago, the dogs and I got up and out early in the morning to find some respite from the heat. We made the short drive to the Blue Lake trailhead and were on the trail by 7:30! The forest was cool and damp and there were dew drops on the shrubs. We haven’t had dew in the valley for quite a while. At home the temperature continues to linger in the high 90’s and low 100’s during the afternoon so we needed a break. ‘They’ say there will be a break in this heat but with that break we have the promise of lightning.

Wildflowers were lush along parts of the trail. Crossing an avalanche chute, the views opened up into the North Cascades. At the lake we enjoyed the sight of the back of Liberty Bell, the iconic rock formation that dominates the horizon at Washington Pass.

We were the first to make the 2.2 mile hike that morning and had the lake nearly to ourselves all the time we were there. Going down, after we passed the halfway mark, we saw numerous hikers going up in the growing heat of the day. I imagine a few of them enjoyed the waters of Blue Lake almost as much as Sky did.

The dogs and I go for a walk every morning, regardless of the weather. Once this winter it was too cold to get very far and another day it was too icy for me to walk safely but those are the exceptions. We walk on the road on our hill and a trail through our property. They are familiar with the scents of others that walk these routes and when they come across a new one much time is spent examining it and I imagine the two of them talk about it too. Sky often looks for new sticks but not as much as she did last year when she was more of a puppy. Luna is often content to walk near me. Most days a bout of dog play erupts and if we have other people or dogs with us, it is even more vigorous. Usually Sky starts it with a ‘puppy sneak’. Luna knows what’s coming.

The girls and I went to Big Valley this afternoon for a walk in the woods. The snow has melted as fast as it arrived. Remember – we were walking all through January and part of February before the big snows finally fell on us and now the trail is dry and the cottonwoods are beginning to leaf out. No flowers up there yet but there will be soon. Big Valley was a good choice because I strained my lower back last Friday and only feel comfortable walking on level ground. Any hills or rough terrain are really challenging. The dogs and I need some exercise and Big Valley is good for all of us with easy access to the river for them to swim and birds for me to see and hear.

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