I can’t believe it’s been two months since my last post. I am totally blog back-logged. September and October were some of the busiest months I’ve ever had. Classes started at the end of September, I currently have a solo exhibition up at WSU Vancouver showcasing some rad new prints, I was invited to speak about my work at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, and on Friday, I give another lecture/demonstration at WSU Vancouver.
I have thousands of photos sift through and then edit from the summer/early fall still, let alone a trip to Buffalo to visit my grandmothers and brother, and a small excursion to the Grand Canyon.
Suppose let us begin with the end of my several day Pacific Northwest getaway, at the very end of July. From Shi Shi beach, I went to Hurricane Ridge in the Olympic National Park– from the shining sea to purple mountains majesty in less than a day. That, my friends, is the kind of magic that only happens west of the great Cascades. If you can dip your toes in the ocean, and within 24 hours walk those toesies into a snow patch on top of a mountain in the middle of summer, you might be in one of the most splendid National Parks in the country.
After I left Shi-Shi in the afternoon, I hiked back to my car and left for Port Angeles where the entrance to Hurricane Ridge is located. Hurricane Ridge is one of the most popular places in the Olympics, offering stunning views of the Olympic Mountains, which I can gaze upon from afar almost any day from Olympia as they border the view of the Puget Sound. It was pretty amazing to stand on top of those mountains with that particular view in mind. I made it into the park in that evening, thankful that the majority of the sites in the campground were first come first serve. I picked a spot, popped my tent, started a fire and made dinner. I promptly passed out after I ate.
I must have gotten up around 5AM. I tore camp apart, packed my car, and was on the winding road up the mountain by 5:30, not another car to be passed for hours. I enjoyed having the sunrise to myself, shared only with the multitude of deer I passed along the way. I stopped at several paved viewpoints, but my goal was to get to the top of the mountain so I could have the Hurricane Ridge trail all to myself, the greedy, aloof hiker I am. When I reached the Ridge parking lot, I was the only car parked in the vast concrete lot. On the hike out around noon, I was incredibly thankful I had made it there so early, as all the wildlife had decidedly hidden themselves from the throngs of loud, gaudy groups of tourists ascending the mountain as I was leaving.
So here, then, are a series of photographs of my early morning hike up Hurricane Ridge, amongst wildflowers and marmots.