Sunday, November 26, 2017

Cascade Creek

Cascade Creek
13 ½” X 23”
Acrylic on a reclaimed cabinet door

One of our favorite hikes takes us down a short, but steep hill to this lovely creek. The views heading down the trail are spectacular, especially in the fall when the aspens turn to brilliant golds and yellows. This time, it was early spring, the aspens still bare, and patches of icy snow in the shady spots as we left the trailhead. Having nearly died once on a narrow icy trail, I was nervous. Now some might say I wouldn’t have died, but I certainly would have at least broken several appendages. Thanks to Clint’s lightning fast reaction, as my feet shot out from under me he grabbed the strap at the top of my daypack, holding me until I dug my trekking pole into the snow and rolled back up onto the strip of trail. What ensued was something like a bear trying to get up from a greased linoleum floor. It wasn’t pretty, but I got both feet back under me and we continued. So, that experience was in my mind that day as we set out.

All went well until we came to a short steep stretch in shady patch of a hairpin turn covered in snow. It was slick as can be and Clint coached me onward, “Step in the footprints that are already there in the snow so you don’t slip.” That sounded like a good idea to me and with the first step, I discovered the snow was about three feet deep as my leg postholed without touching any terra firma and I spun around in a physically impossible position, my free leg bent, knee slip-sliding across the icy crust. Think awkward bear on greased linoleum again, as I struggled to get my leg out of the hole. Eventually I did and promptly decided to slide on my butt down to the bottom of the berm. I was thankful the people behind us on the trail hadn’t caught up to us yet to witness this ridiculous spectacle.

From there the way was clear and we quickly made it to the bottom where the trail opens up to a beautiful broad meadow in a steep walled canyon. We made our way towards one of our favorite spots along the creek that runs the length of the valley. It was a stunning day and the water was a thick ribbon of green and blue laced with white foam.

PS. Though I haven't been painting as much as I'd like to, I've been remiss about posting my pieces. Apologies! More to come soon.

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