Jericho hasn't had a lot of crazy running time lately, so we decided to use Saturday's gorgeous weather for a hike. Off we went to SNP, which is recently reopened after the Thanksgiving Day ice storm that sheared off many, many trees.

We entered the park at Swift Run Gap and headed south, to the Ivy Creek Overlook.

You can see why we feel compelled to take Jericho hiking. He adores being in the woods. He loves it. He grins and bounds and gets super excited (you should see his "do you wanna go for a hike?" dance he does at home).

We hiked about a mile on the AT, to a little overlook we've visited before. It looks west, into the wind.

[ profile] explodingcat managed to find a small windblock. I remained in the sun--with the full brunt of the wind. It was glorious. Jericho didn't much care for the wind and found his own windbreak. Smart dog.

Anyhow, after getting thoroughly chilled, we hiked back to the car. I bared my belly to the east . . .

We then headed southward for another eastern exposure so that we could watch the lunar eclipse. There were clouds on the horizon, so we couldn't see the moon until it hit about 15degrees or so. That was fine--it was bright red and totality was just ending. We watched for a few, then headed back home.

Asthma was mild to moderate . . . got worse as the air grew colder and drier. My center of gravity is still fairly close, though the laxity of my joints keeps me fairly cautious on the scree. I nearly turned around at the outset--fibro pain was pretty horrendous, but the smile on Jericho's face couldn't be denied, so I persevered--and succeeded! I'm glad I have such a happy dog. :)
We decided to see just how iced in Crabtree Falls was tonight. We made the drive, stopping in Nellysford so that boy could get some smoked critter from the Blue Ridge Pig. Once we got into the moutainous area of the roads, we saw lots of small-medium rocks in the road from the freeze-thaw cycle. I saw lots of ice in the woods from seeps and springs.

Anyhow, the path was completely iced over. This didn't stop Jericho from running and sliding, making my heart race. Fortunately, I discovered one advantage to carrying small/in my back--my center of gravity isn't drastically different from when I'm not pregnant. Since I don't have a huge belly in front, I'm comfortable on snowy ice, though the stuff with less traction wasn't very pleasant.

We didn't hike any further than the lowest cataract on the trail. It's just a short jaunt. We liked listening to the water rush under the ice--there was really just one small window.

Tom and Jerry were braver dumber than I was and walked down the steps to a lower platform. Tom did fall flat on his back before attempting this. Me? No thanks. I was quite comfy on the dry and ice-free bench.

We slid our way back to the car and I drove a harrowing trip across 60 feet of ice downhill/on a curve/above the river. Next time, I get to pick the parking spot and it won't be on the iced over upper tier.
We opted for another short AT excursion today. We parked at the Ivy Creek Overlook in the southern section of SNP and headed south on the Trail for about seven tenths of a mile.

It wasn't too hard--a bit up and down, but not horrendously strenuous. Best of all--the raspberries are ripening. Mmmmm, I ate lots of tiny black raspberries. So good. We also munched on hoary mountain mint and highbush blueberries (early ripe ones!).

We eventually came to our destination--just a little rocky outcropping overlooking the Drive and Loft Mountain (not in view).

Flickr pics include common milkweed, some unidentified nodding milkweed, white bergamot, soapwort, and some weird space-alien vine fruit cluster.


Aug. 22nd, 2005 10:40 am
Jericho is seven years old as of June. We adopted him from the Indianapolis Poodle Rescue. The first 30 days are provisional, but we know we want to keep him. He's happy with us and we adore him. Unless boy has an anaphylactic reaction, this dog's ours.

If I get up and walk around the house or the yard, Jericho follows me. In the car, however, so long as the engine is running, he will sit patiently in the back seat, even if we both get out to pump gas and wash the windshield. He's content to be in our car and he adores car rides. Sometimes he sits and looks out the window, sometimes he lays down and stares at whoever is driving, and sometimes he just rests and sticks his head up onto the center console, wanting love. He behaved exceptionally well all day yesterday.

He loved my parents' big yard, but he seems happy in ours. Ours has lots of smells and interesting plants and places to hide his ball. He adores to play with large plastic balls--he plays a sort of one-dog soccer.

He likes leather couches and he seems to enjoy our picture window. I might have to try out nail caps if he decides he needs to bark *out* the window, but he's pretty good right now. When he's not playing, he alternates between resting on the couch (his head on the arm rest) and sleeping on the hardwood floor in the hallway, where he catches a cool breeze and can watch boy work. He really seems to enjoy watching people work. He supervised the carpet layers at my parents' house and he keeps inspecting Tom's code. He might get his doggie MBA yet.

I can tell we'll have to work with him on obedience and separation anxiety, but those are really minor issues in the long run. He's happy and healthy and very alert and active. I have a few minor doggy-proofing things to do in the house (childproof cabinet locks in the kitchen).

We don't crate him at night right now--he's happy to sleep on a pile of blankets in our bedroom. We keep the door closed (window AC) and I removed valuable stuff (platypus, walrus, great-grandma's pillow) from the floor. I'm going to make him a large pillow today if I can ascertain that egg-crate foam is synthetic, not natural (rubber latex). I'm relatively certain it's polyurethane, especially the cheap stuff. If so, I'm going to go to big lots and buy a cheap roll or pad, then come home and sew.

He's a very sloppy drinker. Boy claims we can just mop the floor after Jericho drinks his water. He might be right. At least the kitchen has vinyl flooring, rather than hardwood. ;)

[ profile] explodingcat says Jericho has turned him into a dog person. Sure, Jazz ([ profile] redzshadow's chihuahua) helped a lot, but I think my boy has fallen for this gorgeous dog.

Jericho and Tom

Welcome to the family, Jericho.
Jericho and Tom

My parents' wheaten Scottie, Neal, has a beautiful smile.

In other news, I have freckles. Okay, so that isn't news, but now I have more.

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