Thursday, July 15, 2010

Heaven on Earth!

“I go to nature to be soothed and healed,
and to have my senses put in order.”
~~John Burroughs

(as usual, all of my photos are clickable and you can see more detail when you click on them)

(photo from one of our favorite spots on earth!)

DECISIONS, Decisions...
Where to go on our next get-away?!?

My mom loves to come and get my kids each summer and have them come and spend 4 or 5 days with her and my dad. Tracy and I used to look forward to these moments as it meant we have 4 or 5 interrupted days of being able to get projects done.


a few years ago we realized that projects will always be here tomorrow and since we both LOVE more than anything to head to the mountains and go backpacking and see gorgeous country and create memories, it's nice
once a year
to have time where if we want to, we can do a 19 mile backpacking loop in one day and be able to set our own pace. (as much as we LOVE our family backpacking trips, it is nice to have one trip a year to do whatever we would like and hike as fast or as slow as we'd like to)

These moments we have are amazing and truly some of my most treasured memories with my sweetie!

as we contemplate this years adventure, I thought would reflect on two great trips from past years so I can have this journaled for future years to come.

The view we saw after we packed up our tent and headed toward Jenny Lake.
Spectacular view of the Teton Mountain Range
Getting, SO excited
to get to hike the Paintbrush Canyon to Cascade Canyon loop.

The gorgeous walk and reflections around String Lake.
I want to be there right now!
The peace and serenity
you see and experience in this spot cannot be duplicated anywhere else.

Taking a nap by Holly Lake.
Now, that's the life!!

The steep terrain and shale as we are hiking up to the top.

YES, another one of my favorite sayings...that is so true.

"If you don't climb the mountain, you can't see the view!

What a gorgeous view it is!

Tracy and Kimmie feeling like we're on top of the world!

We enjoyed lunch and kicked back
and relaxed on some rocks for a bit.

Hiking down the mountain we saw this rock...

YES, it looks like the shape of Idaho and so Tracy added smaller rocks that spelled ID as the abbreviation for our state.

Lake Solitude Elevation 9035 feet
Pure Bliss...
being up in the high country, by a mountain lake with the gorgeous backdrop of the Teton Mountains with the LOVE of my life!!

After hiking the 21.4 mile loop...
we are now back at our car and this is the view we experienced.
SO sad that the day is over and we have to leave.

Adventure 2009
These photos were taken after my mom picked up the kids. We had to snap a photo of the gorgeous sunset as we were getting the car loaded up.

We woke up early and left our house at 5:30 am....
we pointed our car and headed to Salmon, Idaho
while enjoying lots of great conversation,
listening to music,
seeing beautiful scenery
and talking about life and sharing our dreams without any interruptions.
It was Heaven!

26 miles south of Salmon we parked our car...
pulled out our backpacks...

and headed up this trail on a two mile hike to one of our favorite spots.

I LOVE this run down cabin
that you see along the way.
Stopping to cool off in the creek.

Gorgeous rugged mountain
and I just LOVE how blue the sky is.

The last 1/4 mile is 1,000 foot elevation gain...
up and up and up we go.

You would think we are at the top
with this gorgeous waterfall...

and this gorgeous waterfall...

BUT, there is still a ways more to hike.
However, the stairs that they have built are awesome and made the last little bit MUCH easier than past years when we have been here.

Kimmie being pounded by a HOT water fall.
You have to climb through this crack to enjoy this hot water.
It feels SO good is SO hot and warm
and is more powerful than any water faucet in any shower I have ever been in.
It truly is spectacular!

Hot water flowing over the mossy rocks.
I just LOVE the texture, the color and the smell of these moss covered rocks.

Gorgeous flowers blooming everywhere...

Some of the pools...
all of them filled with HOT water that is just flowing out of the ground and down the mountain from the waterfalls.

The peaceful, serene beauty of being up in the middle of nowhere, high up in the mountains, with not a soul around and experiencing the most gorgeous country that I think I have ever seen.

I love this rock
and this waterfall on the right is one that you can stand under and it is like taking a HOT shower with jets pounding against your back.

More pools, waterfalls and beauty!

More interesting textures,
only the water right here is ice cold...we climbed in a cave and there was a waterfall coming through a hole in the top of the cave.

The bright green moss, multi-colored rocks, foliage, flowers and water of all temperatures is truly magnanimous.

SO sad to put back on our hiking clothes and
say good-bye to one of our favorite spots...

One last photo.
This rock pummeled hot water across my back and the texture of the mossy rock against my back was awesome!

This spot truly
"feeds and heals my soul and puts my senses in order"

Hiking out...
WOW, what a picture perfect day...
the BEST company in the world,
breathtaking scenery, hot water...
I really don't think there could have been a more perfect day with my sweetie!

On our drive home,
we took a different route and pulled off the road to see Mt. Borah...
that one of these years we can go and climb up this mountain and see the beauty that this area has to offer.

Kimmie pointing to Mt. Borah

This was a fire-pit that was at a church that we stopped at when we pulled off to unpack and eat our dinner. I LOVE this circular and random pattern of the bricks and the benches that go around the edges of it.
Hoping to be able to replicate something like this in our back yard out of salvaged materials that we have.

that we have started this yearly tradition and I can't wait to see what we decide to do this year.
T-minus seven days and counting
until the love of my life and I
are headed out on another great adventure as a couple
to nature to create more memories, enjoy more beauty and solitude and to experience more
"Heaven on Earth"!


Cherie said...

It is definately a beautiful thing (and I think necessary!) to be able to get away with your spouse alone and do something that you both love!!
With your total love of Backpacking, you and Tracy are lucky to live in Idaho! Idaho definately has some beautiful country! Your pictures are gorgeous and really show off some of the best that this "high desert" area has to offer. It often amazes me the beauty you can find when you take the time to explore:)
That is so nice that your mom takes the Kids for you each summer - win win situation for all!
I'm excited for you that your trip is coming right up - can't wait to see where you choose this year :-D

Garden of Egan said...

That looks like so much fun!

Those look like the kind of trips that you come home and have to take a nap though!

My vote would be for you guys to go to Stanley and tromp around up there! (I'm selfishly just wanting to see the stunning pictures you would take!)

Have a blast where ever you end up!

Small House said...

GORGEOUS! I have to hand it to you Kimmie...I'm just amazed. You would NOT want to hike with me. I don't want to hike with me. But I look at your pictures and the wonderful experience you have with your husband, and I feel like grabbing a back pack, my husband, and heading for the hills!!

I'm really excited for you, and the next trip your about to take.
Thanks for sharing.

Anonymous said...

I just "happened" upon your wonderful blog and loved it. The recipes look so yummy and the great photos make me want to put on my traveling shoes :) Great blog !
BB from GA.

Sondra said...

Wow, that IS truly is spectacular!
I always love reading about your hikes and mountain trips. I love being in nature. I used to hike a lot when I lived in SLC - not so much since I live here in Boise. Your photos make me want to get with it.

First part of your blog about changing from doing projects to living life - reminds me of the 1000 marbles post I did Monday. It's easy to get trapped into all the things that need to be done and forget to enjoy the beauty and family around us. I love how you enjoy your journey and live life!

I'm glad we are friends too! :-D

Connie said...

I envy your backpacking experiences! I can't wait to hear and see the places you go this year!
I clicked on your pictures and they are absolutely gorgeous! Hot water shower high in the mountains? Unbelievable!
I love your connection with nature and everything wholesome! It's so cool that your mom takes the boys to get to know them better and to spend some quality time with them! What a great opportunity for you and Tracy to get away!

Missed commenting on your last post. Again, I'm in awe of your delicious meals you're preparing during this time. You truly rock, my friend!