Cook’s Ridge & Gwynn Creek Loop 31Dec2021

Last day of the year… and I got to hike! The snow is mostly gone and the roads are clear, so my sweetheart and I headed to the coast, just south of Yachats, OR.

Here

The beginning of the trail was uphill for probably 2.5 miles. The trail itself was very nice, although it got a lot tighter later. Total elevation gain was around 1,460 feet, and boy did I feel all of it!

There were a ton of downed trees that we saw on most of the trail. I’m not sure if it was the wet, soggy soil, if there was a recent storm, or if the trees were just so wet and heavy.

You can see how shallow the root system is.

If you turn up your sound, you might hear a couple of the creaks and groans that the trees express. Pretty cool… and only a little scary.

This stump was just so cool! It would have been a huge tree! One side had a cool pattern and algae, and the other side was open and amazing.

We found quite a few trees that were cut out of the way, but this must have been a more recently fallen tree.

The top of this tree was leaning against another tree. I can’t imagine what would have caused it to buckle like this!

Again, a shallow root system. I am sometimes so grateful for my walking sticks, and this was definitely one of those times. I get distracted by look around, and my sticks have saved me from falling multiple times.

Not the greatest picture, but this was where I thought we were at the top. We were not. It was close those. This is also where it started hailing on us!

I just think this is beautiful, with the contrasting or complementary (whichever) colors. And so full of life, even after the tree had died.

Tons of typical Oregon swordferns.

We finally saw some sun! It was a welcome sight.

On every hike, there is a picture that, when I take it, I think, “Oh man. This is it. This is the SHOT!” Well, this is that shot for this hike.

If it were summer and warm, I would love to sit in this little waterfall! Of course, during the summer, it’s probably just a tiny trickle.

There were two or three areas that had water running over the trail. It wasn’t deep or terribly muddy, for the most part. I do wonder if they’ll put something in soon to preserve the trail.

Look up… It’s Sasquatch’s hammock! Such a cool and weird branch.

It felt like it took forever, but we made it to the oceanside part of the trail! The weather was instantly different… more wind and it was cold!

I’m not sure what was going on here, but there was a long strip of this. Just twigs and needles and dead, wide-open trail. It was bizarre, and I couldn’t figure out why it was like this.

Cook’s Chasm. This is the first time I’ve seen it from this side!

Post-hike meal: Prime rib melt sandwich with fries and a cider. I could only eat half, but that was fine because it made a great leftover lunch!

I got this for Christmas, so I put it to good use. It smelled great!

Happy New Year to you all!

I’m so happy to have gotten to hike one more time before the new year. Here are my hiking goals for 2022:

  • Go on 25 hikes
  • Set a new elevation gain record. This hike is my current record of 1,463.
  • Set a new distance record. Current record: 8.23 miles
  • Break my altitude record. Current record: 5,633 ft (Horsepasture Mountain Trail).
  • Go on one backpacking trip where I camp for a night.

I feel like some of the goals are a bit lofty, but I need to have goals, right?? And I know I have friends who would love to help me achieve these things and help me become a healthier me.

Published by aimee

It all started with my friend, Christine. She called me a Viking. It's because I like endurance sports as well as lifting heavy things. Plus, my heritage includes Norwegians... It struck a chord somewhere deep down. I suddenly liked the idea of not having to be a small, slender person. I could be strong and thick. I could have mass. I don't want to be overweight or obese, mind you. I just don't like trying to be a waif when that is very likely unattainable to me. I have muscle (under this fat). I like being strong. So this is my journey of becoming more fit and liking the fact that I will never, NEVER weigh 120 pounds.

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