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Thursday, December 31, 2009

Four Dogs and a Friend


Loren & CorkyThank you for humoring me yesterday and reading the saga of my writing career, and even leaving some kind comments. Today, I will show you something else I did yesterday. A friend from the trail club called and said she had to come to town, and would I like to go snowshoeing? Well, duh!

Pretty much wherever she goes, three dogs go too. That made it easy to decide to do the Pere Marquette River loop trail because there is no problem with taking dogs there, and one hardly ever encounters other hikers. The dog population is an interesting mix. Maggie completely ignores all three of the others. They have been on a lot of hikes together, and they might as well have plexiglass walls installed between them for the amount of interaction they demonstrate. The two labs are Cedar and Teak, and the little Bichon Frise is named Corky. Want to guess who is the Alpha Dog?

dogs crossing a bridge

Do you remember this bridge? I was just there with Ellen not long ago. I think it's pretty amazing that I got a picture with 3 of the 4 dogs lined up so nicely! It's usually more like complete chaos! Cedar, Teak and Corky do not ignore each other. They chase and chase and Corky nips at their legs and keeps things interesting.

mower blade teethEvery time I take this walk I try to get some pictures that don't look like all the rest. For the first time I noticed this old mower parked - maybe abandoned. The teeth make a stark silhouette against the whiteness.

cedar hedge

This is one of my favorite spots on the walk. There is a "wall" of white cedar trees, and the trail goes through that larger opening near the left end. It always looks to me like an entrance to a different world. It just seems so odd to find that line of cedars planted out there.

Finally, I'll just add a couple of closeups of where the ice was hanging above the surface of the river. I'm not sure what was unique about the conditions that made the icicles have that pinched form, but it was true of every place where there was a "shelf" like this with icicles hanging below into the water.

iciclesYou can see what I mean better on this closeup. Keep looking at it. Look at the odd way the ice fans out from the little stubs of the branch at the top. Can you tell where the icicle stops and the reflection begins? For sure, the ice will always give me something different to share, as long as I remember to look at the details.

Tomorrow, Ellen and I are doing our "First Friday" outing. We are going to Bowman Lake. Prepare for more ice and snow pics tomorrow!

See Walking and Writing for this hike on Dec 4
See Quiet River for this hike last January


Duxbury Ramblers said...

Our gang would have loved to swell the numbers on your hike, looks a fantastic walk.

As to the quizz I enjoyed doing it but I am not into entering competitions.

All the best for 2010

the ramblers.

RNSANE said...

Well, Shark, I am sure Maggie thinks, "What are these other guys doing on MY terrain?" You can see how she makes sure she is in the lead!! Great photos!

rainfield61 said...

Do not have any experience onsnowshoeing. It must be very fun, but too cold for me to try.

Maggie and her team are great. Happy hiking.

wenn said...

must be fun! Happy New Year!

Ann said...

Maggie looks a canine tour guide in that photo. Those ice pictures are fascinating.

Unknown said...

Nice blog, thank you for leaving me a comment. Feedback helps. I like looking at your wintery photos but I don't like being in snow. LOL.

Julia said...

Great ICE pictures! It would be fun to find pictures to take in the snow I think. A snow shoe walk sounds great too. I keep saying "next winter" we'll go to the snow... sigh

Glynis Peters said...

Love the previous post...and this one is so lovely. Thanks for sharing and a Happy New Year.

The Oceanside Animals said...

Little streams make for cool ice effects.

Sharkbytes said...

Hi Ramblers- I would love to have had you along! We have a trail club that hikes once a month, and goes different places. But sometimes I find someone to go with in between. Glad you liked the puzzle.

Carmen- That lead thing was a real fluke for Maggie. I think it made people think she was the Alpha Dog. Actually that would be little, loud Corky

Rainfield- We could fix you up with warm clothes. It doesn't work the other way though. I can never take enough off to cool down in your climate!

Wenn- it is

Ann- A tour guide! Well, maybe she was in a way since she knows the trail there and the other dogs didn't.

Stormee- Glad I left you a comment- I only do when I have something to say, but your profile doesn't work, so I don't know which blog you are. Thanks for coming by.

Julia- you are just "spoiled" by being a California girl. Get out there and find some COLD!

Glynis- O, welcome! I've missed you- friend who is taller than her dog!

Dennis- We could puddle in the little stream if it didn't make my feet so cold. But the big river is scary. Maggie

Ratty said...

Any time I see dogs they capture my complete attention. I'm glad they're secure enough to get along as well as they do. My dog was such a good dog, but she was completely hostile to any other dogs that were around. I wonder if the icicles got their shape by picking up a little water from the river.

Sharkbytes said...

Hi Ratty- Maggie is a real non-social animal with other dogs. I think that's a good thing. Chips was not good around others either.

I think the water level changes caused it. The river started to freeze when it was at the level of that ice shelf, then dropped... maybe each time it went down a new blob formed.

Anonymous said...

What a great adventure you had! The photos are interesting, and the I love the dogs' picture! Maggie is beautifully stood out with her orange vest.

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