Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Wow, Busy Weekend!

On Friday I had my first all-day field trip with kids from Klamath Falls. I got to take some of the older students from the elementary school I service all the way out to Crater Lake, an hour and a half away. I remember the clear bright blue of the lake in summer when we visited, but this time I didn't get to go to the same look out pointas my previous visit because it was covered in snow. I didn't really get to see the lake at all. Instead, I went snowshoeing with the kids and listened to Ranger Darby telling them about local animals and their winter adaptations, the kids dug in the snow and learned that deeper snow is warmer than snow closer to the surface, and how that log they had visited during the summer was actually right under them, and they were 12 feet above it where they stood in white.

One snowshoe on! 
They are much smaller than i expected. Under the toe is a big metal toothy bit to bite into the snow for better purchase. I felt like a duck walking in them on pavement.

This is the view I got of the lake, all misty and mysterious from a passing cloud.

The buses!
 We had to do a turnaround in that narrow corridor of snow-walls. Let's just say that it was only slightly wider than my bus is long.

Snowshoeing single-file.

Digging a hole to learn about snow. The hand on the right is scooping snow to measure weight and such. The group I stayed near had the best digger and our hole was done the fastest.

Ranger Darby. 
I want that jacket he's got- it looks like the perfect all-weather cover.

A self-portrait, using the activity box to hold my camera.


I got me in it! 
Aimed from the end of my arm- it isn't as easy as my sister makes it look.

Deep snow. It's hard to see, though I tried, but this snow is calf-deep.

Some sunshine on the far wall of the crater.

Leaving Crater Lake. I'm very glad I was not by myself making this drive.

Snowing. It seemed much faster, and more dangerous, going down.

Saturday's regular Pathfinder game was canceled in favor of a trip to the Lava Beds instead. We included me, Jamie, Maryann, Blue, Tig and Marty, and Steven. Every time we go, there are new and exciting things to see. This time it was a cave called Indian Well, I think. Little globs of ice were all over like the ghosts in PacMan. Also, this trip ended much more differently than our others! 


Blue made a snowman! 
We put it in a bush when we got to the car, rather than have him melt in it.

Jamie's belt broke, and Marty liked shoveling with the piece of it.

Here, have a taste!

A tiny mushroom as we entered one cave, with moss.

As before, a peek through the binoculars at the visitor center.

Balancing, sort of.
This time we visited Mushpot cave, which is like an introduction to caving with a paved walkway and podiums here and there to explain formations, with lighting.

How does it taste?
Along the walkway to Mushpot cave are other signs with various explanations, such as for "ropy lava". There was one for obsidian too, but this shard was from a rock further along the path.

This rock. 
I admit, I collected some shards from the gravel that might someday become a necklace and earrings.

Indian Well cave, I believe.

Ice glob. 
They grow upwards like stalagmites, some with dimples in the middle like this one, where the water drips down onto it.

Close-up of beautiful ice glob.

The footing was pretty, but treacherous.

Sleepy Marty. 
She didn't make it all the way through the Indian Well, so we decided that our last stop for the day would be Captain Jack's stronghold, where Tig would stay in the car with Marty while she napped.

It turns out, you should not speak ill of a dead host when you're traveling their stronghold.
Jamie tripped, or slipped in his shoe or something, and this photo was just after he fell and was inspecting things. Can you see the swelling of his ankle already? We think it is sprained.
He limped out with us (using the short path again, of course).

On the way out we stopped to see the petroglyphs. This wall used to be underwater and people would be in boats to draw on the wall.

We're pretty sure that is an owl nest, and that he might be at home. Can you see him?

We think it is an owl nest- because this is a rodent graveyard!

Pieces. Look how tiny.

 We were finally on the way home, enjoying warm sunshine through the windows, when Steven asked if we'd like to stop and see baby goats at his parents' house. So....

Baby goat!

Marty with Momma Goat.

Two kids.

Jamie with a kid!

And me with one.

Marty liked my favorite one too.

Finally, we decided to go bowling. Before we did, though, Tig took us to her office and used their therapy laser on Jamie's ankle.

Unwrapping it.

Pew pew!

When Tig finished with Jamie, she passed the laser over my palm for a moment. It feels warm, and then hot if it stays in one place too long. She would pass the beam in circles back and forth around his whole ankle, and he said it immediately felt better. My hand tingled pleasantly for a few minutes too.

Tig treating a human patient.

The wonderful laser. The green next to it is its pretty cover.


Marty liked rolling the ball by herself, and it took her a bit to warm up to the idea of this contraption.

Cute little shoes!

Marty loves bowling.

She liked it more as a jungle gym.

The therapy laser made Jamie feel good enough to (very cautiously) bowl with us. He beat me, as always. I did fairly well, managing to pick up almost all of my spares before it was obvious that I got tired and started missing everything I aimed at.

On Sunday, Maryann went to Badger Run with Tig, and Jamie and I went to her house to start laundry. We found Tig's old crutches and walking boot from when she broke her ankle rollerblading. As luck would have it, she broke the same ankle, so the boot worked perfectly for Jamie. The crutches were too short, but he didn't need them with the boot. He loves that thing, and walks all over the place with barely any limp. The only bad part is when he kicks something, since his foot is much bigger than Tig's and his toes poke out.

I can't believe sometimes how lucky we are to have such good friends.

We spent the day doing laundry and watching Game of Thrones before going home.

Monday morning I was surprised to see these bruises. I thought they would have shown up sooner or not at all.

I'm sort of glad to be back to a routine, and happy that I have two more field trips coming up, though none as long as Friday's. We had a busy time!

What did you do over the weekend?