November 26, 2010
Woke to a very brisk morning, though the sun is out today. The sun rising across the lake enticed me to take the camera out and try to capture some of the spender of the rays glistening on the lake. I am experimenting with close ups and sun bursts. I think that I am starting to get the hang of the manual settings somewhat on the camera finally. I have even played around with using the flash to highlight areas that normally would not use a flash but would remain very flat. I have also tried capturing pictures in which part of the scenery is obstructed with an object directly in the forefront. They seem to be coming along nicely.
We are planning to visit Hot Springs today and hike the hill around the observation tower. The hill is a small National Forest Park.Probably the smallest national park ever that I’ve been too. We decided to hike the pike trial not realizing this was the shortest and steepest of of the trails to the top. I was quite winded by the time we reached the top. Definitely not the trail for the smoker (though we did pass one such lady puffing away at hers decided that after about the first 200 ft it wasn’t the trail for her and turned back down). Once at the top we took in the view then decided to take the long way back down. At least we thought it was down. Turns out that it is down for a short distance and then ascends back up to crest over the next ridge. Shyla and Andrew I believe were in competition to stay in the lead. I don’t feel too bad though. Shyla has four legs to keep her moving fast and Andrew…..well his legs are at least a foot longer than mine, giving him a much greater stride, almost 2 to my 1. Watching his stride from behind I can see why they both leave me to eat their dust. The hike took us about 2 1/2 hours to complete with us leaving the trail back to the car just as the sun set. Lucky because it would be nearly impossible to see the trail after dark, though I guess we could just start making our way down the mountain until we reached town again.
Near where we parked is an outlet for the natural spring the town is famous for. It is free to bring your water jugs and fill up. We didn’t have any big ones like everyone else was unloading but we did fill up all our empty water bottles. The water at this site is a cold spring where as many of the springs in the town are actually hot springs…..hence the town name!
Tonight is turning as cold as last night and when we arrive back at camp the temperature says 35 on the readout in the truck. Close to freezing already…..going to be a cold one for sure tonight. We decided to make it an easy dinner tonight. We have tried to stay away from as much junk food as possible on this trip and so instead of buying beef for hamburgers we have switched to veggie burgers. Different texture and definitely less fat/moisture I am a little difficulty on this fryer cooking them up.
I believe we over did the walk with Shyla as once she laid down she actually did not have the strength to get back up. She was shivering a bit so we decided to let her lay on the bunk with me as I have the mattress pad heater and it should help her. But when she tried to get up she couldn’t even get her feet under self. Poor thing. It was rather comical but and I know we shouldn’t have gotten the chuckles we did at her expense! Andrew had to pick her up and carry her to the bed. We even gave her a blanket to lay over her too. At least she will have some pampering tonight!