Inside the Gray Jay & Hardy Ridge 09-Dec-2012

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VanMarmot
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Inside the Gray Jay & Hardy Ridge 09-Dec-2012

Post by VanMarmot » December 9th, 2012, 6:08 pm

Work, business travel, holiday, more work, bad weather, more travel, etc., etc. ate a month of hiking opportunities. There was no hope for bluebird weather today, but the false prophets of the weather offered "only showers" and even sunbreaks, so I went for it. Also wanted to test my new "weather resistant" Pentax K-30. Turned out to be a gray jay kinda day - only it was sufficiently damp and gloomy to make me think I was hiking inside the jay. Plenty of weather for the camera to resist. The original plan was for Hamilton (to further amortize my Discovery Pass) and there was even some parting of the mists as I parked at the TH. But by the powerlines, the mists had gathered and closed for the day. Rodney Falls was doing good work,

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mushrooms were still sprouting,

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leaves were damp,

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and Hardy Creek was rushing.

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I decided to divert to Hardy Ridge in hopes that this would give the weather time to reconsider and clear just a bit (please!). The mighty horse bridge across Hardy Ck has always been a perspective favorite.

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It wasn't actually raining as I climbed toward Hardy Ridge, but the mist condensing in the trees simulated rain and, higher up, a melting recent light snowfall only added to the moistening. The ridge crest can provide some excellent views of the Gorge and Hood, but not today. Just the eternal mists,

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a snowy ridge,

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and 3" of new snow were on offer.

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I started toward Phlox Point, but wet vegetation and the non-view quickly convinced me to bail. I went down the W side trail, then took the road toward the equestrian TH. At the big dogleg bend at about 1000', I headed XC downhill to the campground's water tank. This is an easy 0.3 mi connector that lets you make Hardy or Hamilton/Hardy into a true loop. Only the last 300' are tricky - the tank sits at the bottom of a steep, slippery ravine and is guarded by blackberry vines. Not a great day but a decent hike (9.8 mi RT, 2400' EG) and a good test of the new camera (like it!).

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pdxgene
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Re: Inside the Gray Jay & Hardy Ridge 09-Dec-2012

Post by pdxgene » December 9th, 2012, 6:14 pm

What did you think of your new camera? I've been seeing one of those in my near-future. Mine is getting to be about 10 generations removed from the new stuff... Thanx!

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Peder
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Re: Inside the Gray Jay & Hardy Ridge 09-Dec-2012

Post by Peder » December 9th, 2012, 6:51 pm

Judging by the pictures, you got a great camera!
This is an easy 0.3 mi connector that lets you make Hardy or Hamilton/Hardy into a true loop. Only the last 300' are tricky - the tank sits at the bottom of a steep, slippery ravine and is guarded by blackberry vines.
Yes, that last little bit is even a challenge on a blue bird day!
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VanMarmot
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Re: Inside the Gray Jay & Hardy Ridge 09-Dec-2012

Post by VanMarmot » December 10th, 2012, 7:45 am

pdxgene wrote:What did you think of your new camera? I've been seeing one of those in my near-future. Mine is getting to be about 10 generations removed from the new stuff... Thanx!
I went from 25+ years of Minolta and slide film to a little Nikon CoolPix to a Nikon AWD100 to an Olympus E-420. The K-30 is definitely a step up. I wasn't aware of it until it got written-up in Backpacker and then got a good review in one of the photo mags. It's not too big, is truly water/dust resistant, and handles contrast, etc. as well as a Nikon. It uses standard SD cards (the Olympus didn't) and has an optional device that lets you use standard AA batteries instead of the custom lithium battery (which is nice for longer backcountry trips). The AWD100 and the K-30 seem to meet all of my relatively humble photo needs.

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VanMarmot
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Re: Inside the Gray Jay & Hardy Ridge 09-Dec-2012

Post by VanMarmot » December 10th, 2012, 7:46 am

Peder wrote:Judging by the pictures, you got a great camera!
This is an easy 0.3 mi connector that lets you make Hardy or Hamilton/Hardy into a true loop. Only the last 300' are tricky - the tank sits at the bottom of a steep, slippery ravine and is guarded by blackberry vines.
Yes, that last little bit is even a challenge on a blue bird day!
If I can figure out how to circumvent the ravine & the vines, it'll be an excellent XC route.

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Born2BBrad
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Re: Inside the Gray Jay & Hardy Ridge 09-Dec-2012

Post by Born2BBrad » December 10th, 2012, 2:29 pm

Hey Bruce, there is another way into Beacon Rock State Park without
having to have a Discovery Pass. This TR by Guy has all the info needed
to find the way.

http://www.portlandhikers.org/forum/vie ... ilit=phlox

Hike on,
Brad
Link to all my GPSFly uploaded tracks.

Make now always the most precious time. Now will never come again.
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VanMarmot
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Re: Inside the Gray Jay & Hardy Ridge 09-Dec-2012

Post by VanMarmot » December 10th, 2012, 3:49 pm

Born2BBrad wrote:Hey Bruce, there is another way into Beacon Rock State Park without
having to have a Discovery Pass. This TR by Guy has all the info needed
to find the way.

http://www.portlandhikers.org/forum/vie ... ilit=phlox

Hike on,
Brad
Thanks! I've looked at the map & thought this was possible, but the TR tells all. I might have guessed it, but didn't realize Don could actually fly. ;)

One more visit to Hamilton before 12/29 and I'll have this year's Discovery Pass fully amortized...

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Re: Inside the Gray Jay & Hardy Ridge 09-Dec-2012

Post by potato » December 10th, 2012, 4:42 pm

Cool, another Pentax user :) I like your pics, especially the B/W ones
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VanMarmot
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Re: Inside the Gray Jay & Hardy Ridge 09-Dec-2012

Post by VanMarmot » December 11th, 2012, 1:46 pm

potato wrote:Cool, another Pentax user :) I like your pics, especially the B/W ones
Thanks! The Pentax was a leap of faith camera-wise but a good one. :D

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