Savoring the Spring

It’s been a quarter year since my last post, so it’s time again to recap my past three months with some photo highlights. As the weather gets warmer, I started my hiking and shellfish digging for the year. Read on to find out what I’ve been up to.

Teneriffe Falls
Teneriffe Falls, a tall and beautiful waterfall in the Cascades.

I started hiking earlier this year than last year. My first real hike of 2020 was in July, while my first hike this year was in March. It’s still early in the season and the snow is still melting out, but I got a few hikes in. I’ll be doing a lot more hiking in the summer when it’s warm and all the trails are clear of snow.

Mount Erie
First hike of the season is to Mount Erie in Anacortes. The ocean-side hikes are snow free so can be done as long the weather is decent. Nice view of the islands near the area.

 

Heybrook Lookout
Short hike up to the Heybrook Lookout. The top level is actually a cabin that can be rented.

 

Heybrook Lookout view
Nice mountain views from the Heybrook Lookout tower.

 

Mima Mounds
Stroll through the mysterious Mima Mounds. Even today we are not exactly sure how these rolling mounds were formed.

 

Point Defiance Park
Easy walk in Point Defiance Park in Tacoma, with a view of the Tacoma Narrows Bridge. First time I’ve visited anything in Tacoma.

 

Icicle Ridge
A view of Leavenworth from Icicle Ridge. Not a super strenuous hike on paper, but I got pretty tired while going up.

 

Leavenworth Schweinshaxe (pork hock)
After hike lunner (lunch-dinner) in the Bavarian-themed town of Leavenworth. Tried the German-style crispy pork hock ( schweinshaxe), and it was a big meal

Last year, I picked up the hobby of digging clams and getting oysters from local beaches. I’m back at it this year. This year I’ve gone to a few new locations, and dug up different and better tasting species of clams than last year. Here is a video of me digging up an eastern softshell clam.

And here is another short clip of me shucking an oyster on the beach. I wouldn’t say I’m an expert shucker, but I’ve gotten decent at it.

clam catch
A productive day of clamming. Two big horse clams, a bunch of good-sized butter clams and probably two littlenecks in there

clam oyster dinner
Delicious dinner with butter clams steamed two ways, pan fried butter clams in shell, and oyster egg stir fry… and also some Chinese takeout as well.

Kopachuck State Park clam digging
One of the new locations I visited for oysters and clams was Kopachuck State Park. It was super busy that day and I had a hard time finding oysters that haven’t been shucked.

Thanks to the declining COVID cases and the vaccine roll out, restrictions are starting to lift and events that were shuttered last year are coming back. One of the events that returned was the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival, and I went out to see the bright and beautiful tulip fields.

Tulip Town windmill
Visiting Tulip Town during the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival. This is the windmill garden near the entrance.

Tulip Town
Gorgeous colors at the tulips fields of Tulip Town

These are my highlights of the last three months. The pandemic is getting better in the US, and looks like most if not all of the restrictions will be lifted soon. I received my vaccine and I’m ready to go places in summer and fall. Hopefully the restrictions on the US-Canada border will ease soon so I can visit my family and friends up north. Hoping for the best.

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