Sunday, May 19, 2013

A Very Long One Mile Hike

This afternoon, after Mommy ran some errands and stuff and when she got home I told her I wanted to take a hike.  She said it was very hot out, comparatively speaking, and she didn't think I really wanted to do that.  I told her I did, she said, "Maybe later." I then proceeded to follower her around the house demand barking non-stop until she gave in.  She says demand barking is a VERY bad habit I've picked up, but I see no downside to it.  So, into the car we went and off to a forest preserve for a hike.

I was very excited to be at the preserve and I had to first check out all the sniffs

 Mommy took a picture of this bob-o-link while she was waiting for me to finish my sniffing.

 The dandelions were really putting on a show

I was about 1/4 of a mile into the hike when I decided that it was too hot to be hiking.
So I took a nice break.

 Mommy took a picture of these Canada geese while she was waiting for me to get up and hike again.
Then she started grumbling about her having told me it was going to be too hot for me.

We got to the second boardwalk and I wanted to swim, but there is no swimming in the water at this preserve because of all the water fowl.  Mommy and I were glad to see the water levels were up though considering this pond had totally dried out by last fall.

 Anyway, since I wasn't allowed to swim and it was so hot I decided to take another sit down. Right in the middle of the boardwalk.  People had to bike very carefully past me, but there was no way I was moving.

Mommy didn't grumble much about this sit down because she got to watch this blue winged teal come swimming by.

 Then he turned around and came back with his wife so Mommy could see her too.

After the teal show we got up and continued our hike.  When we got to the next bench I announced I was too tired to go on and we needed to take another long break.

Mommy sitting on the bench pour me some water

I took a nap under the bench for about a half hour while Mommy watched the bob-o-links some more.  

This guy was picking dandelions.  We don't know if he was eating the seeds or gathering the fluff for his nest, but he spent a long time picking them.

 Doesn't this one look coy?

 This guy was singing and showing off his colors for everyone to admire.

A lady came by and asked Mommy if I was okay and if Mommy had brought any water for me.  Mommy explained that I was fine, but I was almost 13 and I was just hot and tired.  She told her that I could do two miles last summer, but one mile seemed to be too hard this year and she thought maybe my summer hiking days were over.  The lady gave Mommy a dirty look and tsk tsked her for forcing such an old dog to go out on a hike.  Mommy held her tongue and did not say, "HE forced ME to come out on the hike, lady."

Anyway, after my nap we continued our walk. You can see how dusty I was from sleeping on the crushed gravel trail.

 About 1/2 way done

One more break was needed before we got to the trail head.

Mommy spotted this Northern shoveler shoveling while I was taking my last break.

When we got to the trail head Mommy stopped at the drinking fountain and filled my bowl up four times for me.  I drank about 1/2 a bowl each time and then she poured the rest over me and soaked my paws and ears to help cool me down.

I was very happy to snuggle up on my pillow and drive home.

But we didn't go straight home! Mommy drove me to the lake by our house and parked a few doors down from the swimming spot and we walked to the water so I could swim and get nice and cool.  I thought Mommy was crazy wanting me to take a walk, but as reluctant as I was to walk to the lake, I sure was happy to take a nice long swim and after the swim I thought we should walk into town for a Pupcup, but Mommy said no.  So instead we came home and I got a giant dog milk bone and another nice nap.

So, I only hiked one mile, but it took us two hours to complete.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

My Blog Post for April, 2013

This month we had cold and ice when normally Mommy and I are putting the vegetable garden in (I usually help by digging holes and planting toys).  Then it turned into spring and Mommy and I took a hike, which I blogged about earlier this month.  Then, just when we thought spring was here a few days later we got SNOW! So it wasn't really spring after all.  

Then a few days after that we had RAIN and RAIN and RAIN and Mommy took the day off because our basement had three inches of water in 2/3 of it, plus all the roads to Mommy's work were closed except one and that one crosses a river which hadn't crested yet so Mommy was afraid she might get to work and not be able to get home.  Normally it is fun having Mommy home, but this time she stayed in the basement ALL DAY and I can't go down there anymore, so it was boring, so I made sure to bark for her every hour or so.  That weekend Mommy spent more time in the basement and then we spent time outside while Mommy fixed gutters and window wells and put rocks around the foundation of the house and stuff like that even though most of the water in the basement came up from the floor drain and not through the foundation, but Mommy says better safe than sorry.

After that the weather got hot, summer hot.  I do not like these massive weather changes because it makes my back and hips hurt even though I'm still having my laser treatments.  The vet upped the level of the laser for me the last time because my right leg started dragging again.  We all hope it is just the weather and not me not getting help from the laser anymore.  That would be bad.

Despite the dragging leg and scuffy foot I still have been wanting to walk and hike and sometimes I insist on doing too much, Mommy will stop me if I try to do something extreme, like insist on taking the 8 mile walk. She never gives in on that anymore, but she does still allow me to do up to 6 miles if I want to.  So we took a real long walk through town.  The next day I refused to walk at ALL!   

But after that I felt well enough that I wanted to go swimming. Unfortunately the lake by our house had been treated for invasive plants so I can't swim in it until mid May so Mommy agreed to take me to one of my favorite preserves where there are two lakes I can swim in.  A couple weeks had passed since the big rain so Mommy and I were surprised to see how flooded the lake still was.

You can see the water is about 6 feet over the shore and the little bushes are all getting their toes wet

I hadn't planned to swim quite this early in the hike.  I went in the water to look for a frog and I accidentally stepped off the flooded grass and into the lake.  Mommy was laughing at me and I was not happy about that.

We got to this section of the trail between the two lakes and we saw the water had flooded over it connecting the two lakes.  Mommy said, "Well it is only about ankle deep, we can wade it." so we did.

Which brought us to this part of the trail. I was MUCH deeper than ankle deep.  The water came up above my knees when we were in the deepest part.  Mommy said she hadn't planned on swimming that day.  

When we got to the other side of the lakes we took the bridge over the river and you could see how high the water still was.

See all that gunk hanging off the bottom of that tree (which should be on a small island)? That is all the stuff that got stuck in the tree when the river was at its highest.  That was a LOT of water!

We walked into the woods on the other side of the river.  Mommy wanted to go left, but I wanted to go right so we went right. I then took her through a mowed path in the woods and Mommy was happy because I had taken her to a big patch of two of her favorite wildflowers.

White Trout Lily


After the woods hiking we went back to the lake and I went swimming on purpose about five minutes before we got back to the car so the car would have that wet dog smell for days after.