Hikes and Smelling the Pines

Day 20 of 30 Day Challenge

Smell the Pines

My family liked to hike the mountain trails. There was always a picnic involved too. In my collection of pictures, daddy is cooking on one of those old green camp stoves. Then we’d sit around a picnic table and eat.

There would be potato salad and fried chicken, and a variety of other tasty food. I’ve always thought food tasted so much better out in the woods. The sun warming our shoulders, a cool breeze bringing pine cone smells to mix with the chicken we were eating.

Hiking Around Mt. Rainier

After devouring the fixings, we’d head for a trail. We hiked around the Mt. Rainier, Paradise, and Sunrise areas a lot. The Ohanapecosh campground and river was a name I liked. I liked to say it, hear it roll off my tongue.

I’ve learned the name Ohanapecosh is a word from the Taidnapam Indian dialect meaning “standing on the edge”.

I especially remember the meadow flowers and snow covered, rugged Mt. Rainier that seemed to tower above all.

We had lots of little adventures, not only on the trails. One time heading home our car hit a rock and punctured the gas tank. Needless to say,  before we got off the mountain the car was out of gas leaving a trail of gas all down the road.

Not sure how we managed to get out of that predicament. Guess some nice person gave us a ride then daddy had a gas tank to fix.

Happier treks were on the trails. We’d walk up a needle strewn path, enjoying the trees, the mountain air, the rushing streams flowing by. My mom loved the outdoors and hiking. She always wanted to see what was around the next bend.

One of her favorite comments was, “Smell the pine.” She’d take a deep breath and look around, taking in all the beauty of this part of the world. None of us much liked the city or even big towns. We much preferred the forest and grassy meadows.

We did a lot of camping too. One place we camped there was a little river nearby. I spent most of my time playing on the sandy beach. With rocks and sand,  I made what I called Turtle Island. I didn’t have a turtle, but that’s what I called it anyway.

More Camping/Hiking

Another camping trip involved a bear. We didn’t have a tent. We slept in our ’55 Chevy Station Wagon. My parents had put the food away, but there must have been some left out. I remember waking up seeing shadows pass by the car and low grunts.

The next morning other campers told us a bear went through. We found our picnic basket away down the trail and a Tupperware container with teeth marks.

We kept that Tupperware container for a long time as a memory.

One more memory from the trails is me in my little patent leather shoes and thin socks walking up those trails. I’d get tired pretty easy. Lucky for me my dad had strong shoulders just the right size for a small girl to ride on.

The view from my trusty steed was spectacular.

It was a sad day when I realized I was too big to ride on daddy’s shoulders anymore. Now I had to hike on my own steam.

Later, when I had my own children they got to ride on their daddy’s shoulders in their turn. I’d smile and remember.

Memories make for writing ideas.

Thank you for stopping by and reading my fond memories. If you’d like, share a memory in the comments.

Images courtesy of Pixabay.

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