Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Miss me?

Don't worry, I know you didn't. So'K. I was away for a much needed break. That away was from the office...oops, excuse me while I change my voice mail back to standard.....

Done. Being away means away from the internets too. Yeah, I checked in once in a while, but really, we didn't try and do too much.

We went here.

This is the Pittsburgh Steeler Training Camp at St. Vincent's College in Latrobe, PA. We were only there about an hour, and a thunderstorm came on fast.

You can see the darkening sky in the distance. They chased everyone (all 5,000 fans) off the field, and we made it to the "Steeler Store" tent, just as the sky opened up. Now conventional wisdom (from here at weather weenie central), is that a massive storm usually is fast moving and lasts around 20 minutes. In other words, stay protected for about 20 minutes and you should be fine. Well, more than an hour later, and we were still waiting for the pounding rain to stop. They were trying to close the tent. We didn't have any rain gear with us at all, so I had to buy two Steeler ponchos (you know those plastic bag thingies).

I ran to the basilica (St. Vincents is a Catholic college and a monastery) and DH walked the half mile to the car. By the time he drove back to pick me up, the rain had finally slowed to a drizzle. My hero.

We spent a few days at a music festival in the north central woods--and I'm not kidding about "in the woods". Tioga County is so remote, GPS couldn't get a fix on our location. You'll never find the place on Google maps and it's a black hole on the satellite map. Don't bother carrying your cell when you hike. It is of no use. But you also do not hear cell phones ringing all over the place either. Nice!

The concerts are in venues all over north-central PA and the Finger Lakes region of NY. Most of them in the Wellsboro/Mansfield area. And many of the venues are churches, and in a few cases the County courtroom. This makes the concerts intimate. You can be an arms length away from the tympani or the concertmaster. And the music is superb. And this is all done via local volunteers, and resources. It is truly pretty amazing.

After a weekend drinking wine and listening to fine music, we hiked in the "Grand Canyon".

Pine Creek, best trout fishing in the north east, was running higher than we've ever seen it. The rocks that you see in the foreground...well, there are more, but they are not completely covered. We usually sit on those rocks. In fact, people have been known to wade across the creek, and hike up the east side of the canyon (this view is from the west bank). The only problem is that you are then 12 miles away from your vehicle, if you parked on the west rim. It is a long way by road or trail from one rim to another. (Except directly across the creek.) No one was wading on Monday. As it is, the hike down on the west side of the canyon, is a rather rugged two miles, along narrow ledge-like trails, with a sharp drop to a run along one side. The trail was also unstable in spots, and slippery due to the recent heavy rains. It is plenty challenging when the trails are dry.

View of part of the trail on the way UP out of the canyon.

View of "run" on the drop side of the trail. I'm not sure, but I think it is "Little Four Mile Run".

This is one of those little falls that dot the runs all along their length.

And so we're back, and this is what we were greeted with yesterday.

Yup, rain. Again....sigh. At least we got something of a break from the exhausting political news.


kemtee said...

I did so miss you.

Wonderful pictures. The rain has finally ceased here, too -- at least momentarily -- and it's nice to see the sun again.

Did you catch anything? Or didn't you fish? Just hike?

Kaye said...

Aw I love a good walk in the pouring rain. I'm not made of sugar ;-)