Last weekend it was time for our annual trip to Noble Knob, this time to share our favorite trail with Carlos, Deborah, and our favorite Small Person, Nathan.
In spite of the “mostly sunny” forecast, we spent the approach walking inside of a cloud. A very, very cold cloud. Luckily the trail had lots of eye candy to offer even though Mount Rainier was hiding – all my favorite wildflowers were on display: western anemone, columbine, paintbrush and the always beautiful tiger lily.
We seemed to be right at the cloud line the whole time, and the sun was this close to breaking through…
…but by the time we made it to camp, we were firmly enshrouded in the fog. It felt more like late September than July, and the nutrias, devoid of fur and fat, spent the evening puppy-piled in JK’s sleeping bag. Brrr. Nathan stayed warm in the tent in his sleeping bag and fancy backpacking suit.
But ahh, Noble Knob came through for us yet again! When we peeked out of the tent in the morning, we were above the sea of clouds, the Alpine Lakes Wilderness peaks rising up as jagged islands in the distance.
Now that the sun was out, it was warm enough for Nathan to come out and play. Happiest baby on the rock!
He also got to take a good look at what will likely be his future playground, Mount Rainier.
Wellie and Basil had to pose for photos…
…and I got to engage in my favorite pastime, al fresco reading.
While I reread Wild and Deborah was on baby duty, the boys (minus Nathan) hiked up the Secondary Knob. I took photos of them and tried to make it seem like a harrowing climb…
…but actually it looked like this:
It might have been an easy ascent, but the mosquitoes were ferocious. By the time they made it back to camp, Basil had been gnawed on by so many bugs that his whole face swelled up. Nathan graciously donated some of his Baby Benadryl, and JK and I packed up as fast as we could.
We left the others on the summit since packing up and hiking out with a baby takes a bit longer and we didn’t want to take any chances with Basil. Surprisingly, he didn’t seem bothered by the situation at all, he was his happy self and in full-on explorer mode.
He got lots of sympathy from the White River 50 Mile runners we met along the way, and by the time we got back to the car, the antihistamines had worked their magic and Basil looked almost back to normal. From now on we’ll always carry nutria-appropriate doses of Benadryl (10mg) with us, and put cedar oil on Basil to keep the bugs away. Poor little guy.