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Tag Archives: MVSTA

Luna and I went to Big Valley this morning. It is one of the MVSTA winter ski trails where a person can take her dog and it is a great place for a contemplative walk the rest of the year. My computer has been under the weather recently so this post is from my phone. That is why it might seem klunky and abbreviated.

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Luna

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We will be skiing across this field in a few months

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Bear marks?

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Pine drops

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Not too cold for swimming yet

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Methow River

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Puffball

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Love this trail

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Wasp nest

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Old aspen

MVSTA is still grooming the ski trails and their website says they will keep going til at least next weekend. The snow is getting thin in places but the weather is great and the birds are singing and it’s a good time to be out. Yesterday I enjoyed a ski on the Community Trail between Winthrop and Mazama – some of it along the river. The American Dippers are singing their little hearts out! Also chickadees, nuthatches, woodpeckers and lots of others are busy claiming their territory. It’s hard to believe that in just a couple of months these woods will be full of the sounds of warblers, redstarts, veeries and vireos. That’s one way to mark changes of the seasons.

 

Approaching the Goat Creek crossing

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Goat Peak looms above the seasonaly low Methow River. In June it will be full, bank to bank.

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The clearest water you’ve ever seen. No place for fish to hide.

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The suspension bridge is always a favorite stopping place

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Old cottonwoods

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A side channel. I’ve seen a Northern Pygmy Owl here several times this winter. Not yesterday though.

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This cottonwood forest provides wonderful songbird habitat in the spring and summer.

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Luna is still recovering from her unfortuante accident last November. She continues to lack stamina and may still have some pain in her lower back. However, she wants to have fun. She wants to run and play with other dogs, go to agility and be the happy girl she’s always been. We’ve only occasionally been out to Big Valley – the winter ski/bike/snowshoe/walk/dog trail between Winthrop and Mazama – this winter. Last winter she would outrun me even on my skate skis or she’d be out in the deep snow searching for voles or anything else that caught her attention.

Today was a sunny warm morning and the MVSTA grooming report said it would be done around ten. A perfect morning for spring skiing. Apparently I am not the only person who reads those reports! Numerous cars full of people and dogs showed up right behind us!

 

A Ruffed Grouse slowly crossed the road, one sloooooow step at a time

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I think he is displaying to me. It is Valentine’s Day after all.

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Luna is excited to be at Big Valley!

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She starts off at a good clip

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She’s always had an easy running gait

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Who’s that down there?

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Hi. My name’s Luna.

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I’m Molly.

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Don’t act silly; they are watching us.

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Mike, the groomer, loves his job!

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Come on, quit talking! Let’s go!

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I don’t think you can catch him.

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I love these aspens.

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Starting to slow down after about 3k

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But then, there’s the river!

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I can will you to give me a cookie.

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Remains of the fall

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And winter’s ice

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Getting real tired now

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Trees. I can’t get enough of them.

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There’s some of the dogs we met at the parking lot.

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He doesn’t even know he’s different

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Just another k to go. You can do it Luna!

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Today I skied from Brown’s Farm to Mazama, had lunch and skied back; a distance of about 20k. For me it’s a good sk;, for others it’s just an average day. It’s a mostly flat stretch of the Community Trail along the Methow River. Along the way I was able to see quite a few interesting birds – a Belted Kingfisher, American Dippers, a large (200 plus) flock of Common Redpolls, Ravens, Mallards, Mountain and Black-capped Chickadees, Red-breasted Nuthatches, an unknown diving duck and a Northern Pygmy Owl. Soup at the Mazama store was Brazilian Black Bean served with avocado cream and salted baguette and quite satisfying. Temperatures were a little bit warmer, into the twenties today. Feels downright balmy after all the single digit days.

 

This dog is the official greeter at Brown’s Farm. I should know his name by now.

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A gray day seemed perfect for black and white

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The Methow River

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Soup and bread at the Mazama Store.

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I really, really need a longer lens for the little camera.

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Yesterday was fabulously sunny and cold at Gunn Ranch! 9 degrees when I arrived! The glorious blue skies and sunshine brought out the skiers and their dogs; lots of backcountry skiers, some snowshoers and the first ‘fat bike’ I’ve seen on the groomed trails. Luna’s tall blonde California friend was back for another day on the trail. Two dogs, a jack russell and a blonde goldendoodle came all the way from Utah to ski our trails. A husky mix puppy came from Canada. Some dogs wore boots to keep the snow from building up on their pads. No one seemed to complain about the cold and everyone had fun!

 

This is the first time I’ve tried the new gallery feature in WordPress. Do you like it? Or not? Let me know.

Happy New Year!

 

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