Monday, April 28, 2008

NAC Action Alert: Seattle, WA


Copyright 2008 by the Naturist Action Committee, which is responsible for its content. Permission is granted for the posting, forwarding or redistribution of this message, provided that it is reproduced in its entirety and without alteration.

DATE: April 28, 2008
SUBJECT: Seattle, Washington
TO: All Naturists and others who are interested

Dear Naturist,

This is an Action Alert from the Naturist Action Committee concerning an important situation in Seattle, Washington.


Supporting local activists, NAC is asking you to participate in an online survey to indicate that you favor the inclusion of clothing-optional areas in the City of Seattle's consideration of future strategic plans.

Please take a few minutes to participate in the online survey to show your support. The last day to complete the survey will be Wednesday, April 30, 2008.

ANYBODY may participate, including those who are not residents of Seattle. Take the survey at:

The survey is divided into six goals areas. The first four are most important to us. The last two are intended mainly for internal issues.


Goals I - IV are the most appropriate to fit in comments about wanting to have clothing-optional beaches. For your suggestions, you may wish to use the page referring to Goal II: "Provide Recreation and Learning Opportunities to Support Healthy & Diverse Communities."

Additionally, you may use the area entitled "other feedback" at the end of the survey. You may choose to make your survey comments anonymously, but NAC encourages you to lend strength to your suggestions by standing behind them with your name and address.

The survey invites you to respond to the question: "What, if anything, is missing from this goal area?" Use your own words to add comments. Here are some general suggestions:

1) Call for Parks & Recreation to help work with local groups for the development of European-style clothing-optional beaches that are properly signed along the 24 miles of available Seattle Park & Recreation shoreline.

2) Quiet areas with a history of clothing-optional use on the shoreline of Magnuson Park would be an excellent candidate for clothing-optional use.

Use your own words. Suggest another beach area, or bring up other issues in which you are interested.


You may also want to point out:

1) For years, several beaches in Seattle have included areas that have been used quietly and informally for clothing-optional recreation. However, despite a high demand and preference for such areas, there are currently no areas officially set aside or properly signed for such purposes.

2) Many major cities on the west coast have many popular clothing- optional beach destinations close by and there is high demand in Seattle for the same type of opportunities. (You might want to mention Wreck Beach in Vancouver BC, Collins Beach and Rooster Rock State Park near Portland and the several state-owned clothing-optional beaches that exist along the California coast.)

3) Relate your own positive experiences of skinny dipping at Seattle beaches. This could be casual use of a traditionally used area or as a participant during a WNBR, Magnuson Beach Bares, BFC or other organized event.

4) Seattle is a major body-positive town with large numbers of events which have some social nudity aspects including many naked bike rides (artistic and political), body painting parties, Magnuson Beach Bares, Sun Lovers Under Gray Skies, Body Freedom Collaborative, and nude swims at municipal pools (pioneered by NAC) There are several large social nudity communities in the Greater Seattle area.

5) You may also want to direct attention to for more general info on the Web and/or to for a local Seattle skinny-dipping group.

6) If you live outside the Seattle area you may wish to add (probably under Goal II): You and your family enjoy traveling to the West Coast/Pacific Northwest and visiting clothing-optional beaches is a major activity that you look forward to when vacationing.

7) You expect that every civilized city will have clothing-optional beaches for local use and as tourist attractions, and you don't understand why Seattle, of all cities, has no officially-designated beach areas.

Perhaps these comments can go on the Goal III page OR at the very end of the survey under Section 7 "Overall and About You" under "other feedback"


Local activist Daniel Johnson offers these important remarks, which NAC is including verbatim in this Action Alert.

"If you're going to talk the talk, you've got to walk the walk. Actions speak louder than words. If Parks really intends to do outreach and do relationship building, work with local non profits and support diversity, as is indicated in the SAP, it must recognize the steady call for clothing-optional beaches by locals and discontinue stalling against any real long-term change. It is time to move beyond the status quo and begin working with locals on creating partnerships for building healthy, family-friendly, clothing-optional beaches along with other forms of clothing-optional recreation in the City.

"Parks & Rec must find a way to properly staff clothing-free swims by local groups with lifeguards. The recent policy change which has resulted in canceling nude swims at Ballard Pool is discriminatory and ridiculous. By all conventional measures of being an adult, including the fact that 18 year olds are adult enough to go to war, marry and raise children, why are 18 year old lifeguards not considered adult enough to staff the swims? Parks & Recreation purposefully raised the age limit recently for lifeguards from 18 to 21 knowing that most lifeguards are younger and tend to move on after a few years as a lifeguard and that having no staff to fulfill the ridiculous new age requirement would force these events to be canceled."


Seattle Parks and Recreation is seeking input from the public regarding its Strategic Action Plan (SAP), an important document that will determine the direction of Seattle Parks & Recreation for the next five years by defining its priorities and values. Seattle Parks & Recreation was charged to create the SAP by the Mayor's Office and the Seattle City Council because they felt that Parks & Rec was not being held accountable to the public.

Info on the SAP is at

This is our big opportunity for our voices to be heard and counted!! They have to acknowledge our comments in a formal manner!

The SAP meetings and the online surveys are a great opportunities for us to convey to Seattle Parks & Recreation that we need opportunities for European-style clothing-optional recreation, especially designated clothing-optional beaches. It is absolutely critical that the skinny-dipping community be represented in the Strategic Action Plan.

Thanks for participating!


For additional local information, contact:

Daniel Johnson
(206) 369-2661 cell


The Naturist Action Committee is a volunteer nonprofit organization that exists to advance and protect the rights of naturists throughout North America. Identifying and fighting bad local lawmaking is necessary, but it's expensive. To do its job, NAC relies entirely on the voluntary generosity of supporters like you. To donate to NAC, use the address below

PO Box 132
Oshkosh, WI 54903

Or call toll free (800) 886-7230 to donate by phone using your MasterCard, Visa or Discover Card. Or use your credit card to make a convenient online donation:

Thank you for choosing to make a difference.


Bob Morton
Executive Director
Naturist Action Committee

Naturist Action Committee (NAC) - PO Box 132, Oshkosh, WI 54903
Executive Dir. Bob Morton ->
Board Member Mark Storey ->
Online Rep. Dennis Kirkpatrick ->

Freehiking Boss Creek in the Wild Sky Wilderness

Freehiking means you wear or carry the absolute minimum
. . .leave the crutch of clothes and supplies far behind

As masochistic as last Thursday's nude trek through a late-season raging snow storm was, Saturday's hike was an idyllic, sunshine-replete romp up a long-abandoned track in the proposed Wild Sky Wilderness near Index, WA. It was a perfect nude hike on many levels:
  • Temperatures were in the low to mid seventies,
  • The sun was a-shining,
  • There were no bugs at all, and
  • I got the companionship of a pleasant couple and one energetic dog for part of the hike.
My hiking companions I should explain. I like Boss Creek because the trailhead can only accommodate one vehicle at a time . . . two if squeezed in there. As a consequence, if I can zip in there and take up most of the unofficial trailhead I'm pretty much assured I will have the six mile trail into the heart of the wilderness, and spectacular scenery, to myself. While the trail is not well known it is also not a difficult one. The first short mile is a gentle walk to a large clearing where those with a bent toward firearms do their target shooting. From there the abandoned road bed starts switchbacking up to a north-trending saddle into the Boss Creek drainage 2,000ft higher and five miles further in. Along the way there are some nice waterfalls as you round an unnamed mountain and head into the drainage.

Since I often claim the trailhead for myself, it' a disappointment to drive in and find another vehicle (and people) already there. It's not selfishness . . . it's just an understanding that I'll have to rethink where and when I'll hike nude because there will be people on this trail. I always try to be considerate of other people with whom I share the trails . . . nudity may make them uncomfortable.

However, that wasn't the case with this great couple. The conversation went something like this:
After having checked out other possibilities to hike nude (and finding half of Puget Sound already swarming into campgrounds and better known trails all up and down the Index-Galena Road, I return to Boss Creek where I note the SUV and the couple still there putting on hiking boots. Nosing my car slightly into the trailhead pullout and petting the friendly dog who ambles up to my car I smile and ask hopefully, "How's the trail?" I'm hoping, of course that they've already had their hike and they're getting ready to leave.

The male, in his forties I'd guess, looks up from where he sits half out of the driver's side. He smiles good-naturedly, "We're just heading in. You're welcome to join us." His wife (I found out later) waves from the other side of their vehicle, already boot-clad and ready to go.

My desultory 'Oh' served as a diversion while brain cells silently considered diminishing possibilities. Such great weather and nothing was working out! I could join them and be a textile for awhile . . . until chance and distance allowed me to hike naturally. Then there was the matter that I was wearing nothing but a long teeshirt that barely covered my upper thighs . . . suddenly making me acutely aware that I was half naked already and I didn't want to have to explain my dress if I got out of my car to join them.

I was already preparing to head on in hopes of discovering another good location when the guy came over and introduced himself, "Tom . . . and my wife Lacey. Air Force?" I stuck my hand out the window and shook his, "Rick". Their dog crowded in for more petting atop his head.

Ahhhh . . . the sticker in the back window. "Was . . . long time ago."

"Me too. Want me to move the car to make more room?"

"I dunno. I was kinda hoping to have the trail to myself so I could hike nude." I gestured at the teeshirt I was wearing.

"You don't have to leave because of us. We've seen nude hikers before. Nice day for it."

Well, it kind of went like that. They were genuinely friendly, outgoing people that wanted to share a new trail. Discovering that I'd give it up because I wanted to hike it naturally didn't faze them . . . titillate them . . . or antagonize them.

The conversation went on for some time with both of them reassuring me that I was welcome to join them in any state of dress or undress I wanted. There was room for my Civic and I parked. Somewhat relieved I got out to prepare my pack, don boots and drink the last of the coffee in my mug. My just-met companions were waiting just the other side of the gate across the entrance. I shrugged, quickly pulled my top off over my head and tossed it into the car. I double-checked I had my keys in the side pocket of my pack and shut the door, scampering around the gate with my pack before an errant car rounded the bend on the main road and got more than an eyeful of me. Out of sight of traffic I was greeted with smiles but no more than a curious appraisal and acceptance. Experience and confidence allow me to deal with it by beaming a smile right back. We turned inward on the overgrown roadbed amid a fresh discussion of what we did for a living. The dog took point fifty feet ahead and we slowly followed. Refreshing.

They had no problem with my nudity . . .
I had no problem with letting them take souvenir pictures

Eventually the conversation did turn to my being naked. Mainly . . . why? My response was 'because it just feels so great". The sun . . . the slight breeze. It feels great on the skin. I asked them how they felt with ankle-length pants and arm-covering shirts. Hot? Perhaps a little humid under those clothes? How about the clothes binding and cinching as they hiked. To me, I pointed out, it's a miserable way to enjoy nature. I challenged them to try it. Now . . . or sometime else, but just try it.

Hubby seemed a little worried at that. His wife didn't though. She seemed to actually be entertaining the thought with a mischievous pixie smile on her lips. However, I changed the direction of the conversation by pointing out the large sunlit clearing ahead where locals come to do their target practice. Their dog was already checking it out.

Target Practice

We lingered, checking the litter-strewn area out. I posed for a few pictures for them and just enjoyed that open area for the sun exposure. We shared lunch from our packs, laid out on a few large boulders on the far side of the clearing . . . sandwiches and, of course, the thermos of coffee from my backpack to match their ersatz water bottles.

The trail steepens and switchbacks from the clearing. Clearly my new-found friends (tourists that they be) had only wanted a short, level hike (or perhaps their clothes were overheating them into uncomfortability, though I didn't push that suggestion). They were going to head back . . . I was only beginning my hike. We exchanged emails and off they went. I donned my backpack, watched them disappear around a curve and then turned to do uphill battle. Dang, the company was good and the time together too short. I smiled a little at the thought that wriggled into my head of the two of them looking back to see if they were out of sight . . . and then stripping to hike back to their car naturally. Possible. Who knows but the episode rang positive. I trudged uphill, shaded by wide-spread canopy and relaxed by the quiet sounds of the forest . . . crinkle of dry leaves from last autumn beneath my boots, the rustle of light breezes between the higher branches . . . the eternal mating calls of stellar jays and smaller finches. Peaceful. I became totally immersed, stopping to listen . . . or experience a two foot square patch of sunlight in the shade . . . or just stand there and feel the soft breezes tickle a thousand tiny body hairs in waves of sensuality.

I guess the moment was what made me decide to go on without the pack. At the top of the first rise the roadbed switchbacks back southerly and into stronger sunlight once again. Linger I do, drinking in the vitamin D to the point of letting the pack slide off my back for even exposure. The backpack is overkill, loaded with winter and snow survival supplies that are simply not needed on a day like today. One never knows what awaits six miles in and a couple of thousand feet higher. But at this elevation, snowshoes lashed to the pack seem ridiculous. I like to hike light but I simply didn't prepare my lighter fanny pack. On the spur of the moment I decide, what the heck, and stash my backpack behind a couple of easily-identified moss-covered boulders by the trail. I decided I didn't want to hike with the pack and, lacking any other method, I'd just hike without anything (other than my boots, hat, sunglasses and hiking stick).

Hiding my backpack in hopefully a safe and dry location

I've been known to lean to the Freehiking ideal from time to time. Walking the nude beaches at Collins and particularly Rooster Rock I will wear nothing at all except the MIA bracelet around my wrist and walk the several miles around the perimeter of Sand Island barefoot and happy as a clam to feel such freedom.

In the wilderness I don't do that as often . . . never barefoot because caution warrants protecting the feet that have to get me back out of that wilderness. But occasionally on a shorter trail I will stash my pack and clothes somewhere and hike on lightfooted. On the Boss Creek Trail I had no idea of what the conditions were further up . . . where the snow started or how much new growth had made the old roadbed an exercise in weaving and ducking around thickets of fast-going alder saplings. But for today I was willing to try to go as far as I could, trusting the nice weather to continue sunshine and warmth.

On foot I can traverse this . . . not so a trailbike or 4wd

Less than two miles in the lower waterfalls are dry right now . . . awaiting spring melt from the snows further up. But what they did in late fall before the snows . . . a substantial tearing up of the natural road surface. This will be impassible once the spring runoff gets into swing.

In many places the roadbed simply doesn't
exist and you must portage around

Around one switchback and there simply wasn't a roadbed anymore . . . it was several hundred feet below in a slump of very wet earth and still growing ferns. Too dangerous to attempt to climb down into and then back up, I had to take careful footing above on more stable-looking ground where the trees had held their own and resisted movement. Glad I brought my hiking staff.

The limit for today . . . not much left to the roadbed and
4 -5 miles to hike back before the sun drops behind the western ridges

The runoff from the upper waterfall is continuing to destroy the remaining bench that the roadbed was constructed upon. In another few years there will be little left except, hopefully, a hiker's footpath . . . potentially tread worn by yours truly . . . minus clothes.

A ravine or draw with one of those waterfalls in the background

These waterfalls at pretty spectacular up close but difficult to photograph . . . they sit in almost perpetual shade. What's left of the old roadbed continues to the left in the image above. In another quarter mile or less the switchbacks become short, steep legs before opening onto the stunning scenery of the Boss Creek Drainage. Last year at this time I had to do battle with the burst of growth from young alder saplings taking over the roadbed . . . dealing with a lot of scratches from supple and strong branches that barred my way, flayed my bared skin and whipped back continuously . . . daring me to bring a machete the next time.

There is also a lot of deadfall and huge, ancient toppled trees that become natural barriers in themselves as the foliage transitions from broadleaf to the evergreens and hemlocks. Much as I wanted to tempt myself to attempt it . . . it was time to amble slowly on back down and try to time my arrival with the last of the days sunlight.

Re-slinging the backpack for the last mile of the trip

Hiking back down into the lower reaches I wasn't really paying much attention and went right by where I'd stashed my backpack. I got right down to the lower clearing before I realized I'd forgotten where it was and a little niggling panic set in. Up again, unsure of which switchback the moss-covered boulders lay that hid my pack, my clothes and most importantly . . . the keys to my car. Fortunately it was the next switchback up and the location became obvious when seen for the inbound direction. I didn't really want to shoulder that pack after the resplendent freedom of the day . . . if the pack had had wheels or little coasters on them I would have gladly wheeled the thing behind me . . . anything to keep it off my back. Is there possibly an invention in there?

Arrival back at the parking area by the gate to Boss Creek

On this trail I normally put on some clothes before I come into view of the parking area and the Index-Galena Road, which can been real busy at times with vehicles zipping by from recreational
opportunities further in. Normally you can hear them on the winding road surface long before you see them. I took a chance and just brazenly walked right up to my car (you can see the asphalt pavement right behind the car) . . . and took my time digging the keys of of the backpack to unlock doors. I didn't see or hear any vehicles for at least another half hour . . . a half hour I stayed naked and enjoyed the last dregs of sunlight before the sun disappeared behind those far western ridges across the Skykomish River. As I sipped the last of my coffee, sitting naked on the trunk of my car facing the western sun, I resolved to do minimalist freehiking more often.

Coffee, the late afternoon sun and a relaxed end to a great nude hike

"Find a nice sunny clearing, undress and stack your clothes neatly on a rock. Then hike out naked in any direction for a few hundred yards and return. By the time your arrive back you will have had an epiphany on the meaning of naturism."

Friday, April 25, 2008

How Desperate Can We Be For a Nude Hike?

Pretty desperate, I'd say guessing from the spur of the moment hike I did last Thursday.

Listening to the weather forecasters, Thursday was supposed be be one of the better days in the week and so I tried to arrange my activities to sneak in a quick hike on that day. Then the owner of Scenic Hot Springs asked me if I could check on conditions up there in preparation for a county site visit (and retrieve his mail for him). Scenic wasn't my goal because of the extra 45 minute drive . . . I had planned on hiking in the Wild Sky Wilderness nearer Index . . . there is so much to explore out there. But in any case I figured to do the check at Scenic and then head back west for a real nude hike. Didn't turn out that way.

The hike I needed. Cabin fever . . . stress and losses. A hike always re-energizes the soul.

Hours earlier, nice sky and a chance to mow my backyard lawn. Wish I could also mow my front lawn nude, but alas ...

The morning started overcast in Seattle, with promises of a clear sky. Having the house more-or-less to myself I did the necessary chores . . . like cutting the grass (nude, no less as there is some privacy in my backyard). By eleven it was looking like a good day to get in a hike. I should have checked the current forecast.

Never mind the heavy accumulation of clouds piling up over the Cascades from the southwest (a sure sign of bad weather). As I drove east on Highway 2 the sky blanketed any hope for sunshine (even under grey skies). Drizzle started peppering the windshield and I hit heavy fog as I stopped in Skykomish for the mail. Only a few miles east of Skykomish I ran into lazy, heavy snowflakes. Hmmmmmmm ... The snow got heavier and heavier as I headed east past 2,000 ft.

The snow berm blocking FS 850

Mike had phoned me from Canada to specifically check whether the snow was melting enough so that he could drive up FS 850 next week with the inspectors. Kind of flabbergasted me as well. By this time last year there was barely any snow on the access road. Now the berm was a good eight feet tall and as solid as a concrete casting (guess that's how our snow gets the name Cascade Concrete).

Being as the whole of the Cascades was cloud enveloped, I figured a Wild Sky hike would be more of the same I was facing at Scenic. I decided I might as well hike up to the springs and check out conditions. It was snowing lightly which meant it was probably raining at the lower elevation near Index. Given a choice I'd much rather hike in snowfall than get drenched in cold rain . . . especially when I'm nude. Since there are no cars at the Surprise Creek Trailhead I knew I pretty much had Scenic to myself. I stripped in the car, emboldened by the lack of human activity about and the blanketing drift of snowflakes hemming the personal space that normally would have been wide open to any vehicle speeding by on the overpass across the BNSF Yards. Then it was a climb up the huge mound of plowed snow near the car and off into the canopy for the back route.

Coming out of the back route canopy onto FS850 near the clearcut

I took my snowshoes, unsure of what the pack was like. Snowshoes slow you down and take a lot more out of you. Fortunately the snowpack was firm and mostly taking the weight of my boots with only an occasional posthole to the knee. The gaiters kept my feet and lower legs dry and warm.

The BPA clearcut was much the same except for the wind streaming through with stinging bites from pelletized snow . . . storm stuff and some pretty cold weather. My thermometer didn't tell me much except to hover around the low thirties. I suspected from the type of snow and the biting wind behind it that we were right at freezing and I was beginning to have second thoughts about doing this nude. A challenge yes . . . but a stupid idea?

I wasn't really feeling any worrisome effects from the cold. Partly because my back was to the wind as I trudged up the clearcut and the backpack afforded a lot of protection. No shivering . . . which is always my first warning to forget nudity and get some clothes on. The cold really didn't bother me much at all . . . in fact, it was invigorating to expose myself to mother nature and enjoy what she was throwing back at me. Besides, I kept telling myself, once I reached the trail entrance at the top of the BPA Road (3,000ft) I would be re-entering the shield of trees once again and the wind would abate. Fat chance as the snow fell thicker and the winds swooped downward off the face of the mountain using the artificial chute of the widened trail. I was about to hike fully naked into a maelstrom of biting snow . . . almost blizzard-strength.

At the trailhead to the springs. The wind was so brutal on the clearcut that I put on a little protection

In the hour I'd been braving this unseasonal winter storm fully two inches of fresh snow had filled in the tracks of all the previous visitors. A couple of hundred feet up I scrambled down the eight foot gorge the Honeymoon Hot Spring runoff had carved through the season's snowpack. Down on firm ground and walled in I took a respite and a self-check . . . looking for the warning signs of frostbite or coldnip, pasty-white skin being the best indicator. None. If anything, my skin was healthy and 'pink' . . . faring the cold rather well. It even felt warm to the touch and protected in the narrow chasm,snowflakes that had adhered to body hairs quickly melted and ran off. Time for a quick cup of coffee and some essential rewarming of one 'vital' body part . . . the one part to realize that 'hey, it's cold out there!'

Some idea of the driving snow

The snow on the tree boughs above is all fresh snow. All along the trail up I had to dodge and duck under snow-ladened tree limbs like this and often cascaded myself with snow. The top I'd put on became soaked and more a liability than protection. I removed it for the rest of the hike. I had spare, warmed clothes in the backpack (remember that trick of wrapping them around a hand warmer pack?) I was determined to finish the hike nude . . . I wanted a nude hike, period.

Making Snow Angels between relaxing and re-warming soaks

Stepping into the hot spring pools was nirvana and I did nothing for fifteen minutes except soak the liquid heat of the earth back into my body. I actually started shivering in the pools as my cold outer layers took heat out of the water and left a layer of cooler water as a barrier next to my skin. The same effect in reverse of the adage to soakers to not move too much in a very hot, hot spring . . . allow a layer of water to be still next to your skin as insulation. Moving the water around took care of that problem and then it was into the second pool of hotter water and a really long and lazy soak. For the record, the pools were at 103F and 109F . . . nice and toasty hot!

The snow continued to fall, warming into bigger flakes now. Someone had earlier posted in a naturist forum about making nude snow angels, and I saw the perfect, untouched virgin snowbank just begging twenty feet away for a warm body to plop down and start making like an idiot. That idiot was me but it was fun, the snow angel looked passable. I barely felt the cold caress of the snow . . . until I hopped back into the hot pool and discovered that my butt was decidedly cold. I spent the better part of the next two hours just enjoying the cloud-enshrouded mountains and the valley far below.

Making my way back down the moutainside

Eventually, of course, we all have to head back from whatever selfish sojourns we undertake. Fully reheated it became a no-brainer that I would hike back down nude. It was bad enough on the trail but once I re-entered the clearcut I entered the biting wind and snow once again . . . this time facing right into it.

Near blizzard conditions on the clearcut again

Ever go skiing and have snow encrusted on your face? Imagine that happening to the rest of your body. If I stopped for any reason I really felt the cold and nudged that much closer to giving up and digging those pre-warmed clothes out of the backpack. But I still hadn't experienced any warning signs of hypothermia (the shivering, the muscle cramping, etc.). This was another one of those 'damn it, I can do it' challenges for me. I'd been highly stressed for weeks and I needed to win a personal physical, mental and spiritual challenge to get myself back on track. I took it one stage at a time. After a long time I finally reached the BN yard and the safety of my car.

Ummm, guess where the keys are, and I'm standing around
in a freezing cold steady rain shower

Except, wouldn't you know it but there were the keys to the door and protection sitting safely and securely on the passenger-side seat in plain view . . . and the doors were locked! With the lifting of the earlier storm and the fog and mist I was no longer obscured from plain view on the nearby highway. I wonder what the few passing cars might have thought to the strange-coloration (pink-fleshy) of that hiker way over there (there being my car at the trailhead and me standing naked beside it with the coathanger I keep wrapped around the tailpipe . . . fishing to work the door latch up. It was raining down at this elevation and I was getting thoroughly soaked and chilled . . . more so than all the effects the snow and wind had had on me earlier.

I got the car open easily enough (I've had a lot of practice because I forget my keys often). Then it was to crank her up and get that blessed heat blasting out of the vents. One thing I suggest is that if you ever need to warm up after a foray like mine, hold off putting on clothes until the heater has had a chance to warm you. Clothes become two-way insulators. Put too many layers on and your prevent that rewarming heat from reaching your cold skin. Best to stay naked for as long as possible. I drove the seventy mile back to civilization with only a teeshirt.

No . . . enough of the cold-weather hikes. Where is this warmer weather we've been waiting for for months. I need a good warm weather nude hike and some much-needed vitamin D!

Thursday, April 10, 2008


My apologies for the lack of posting. On March 31st I lost my mother to a long-standing heart condition and I'm dealing with a sudden emptiness in my life.

A few days after my mother's passing away we had to take my mother-in-law to the hospital for a life-threatening case of flu-induced pneumonia so these past several weeks have been body, mind and emotion-numbing on me.

Both my mother and my mother-in-law lived in my home . . . and both are very dear to me. During the last few years role of mother and son reversed as I took on the role of caring for my mother . . . feeding her, helping her with her daily injections, massaging her feet at night and putting her to bed. It was a role that had become a part of my life and I enjoyed the time together. The loss is very great yet we had been expecting the day for some time. My mother had beat the odds of her bypass and lived an extra 15 years beyond expectations. When time came for the late night medic trip I honored my mother's request of no extraordinary measures. One week later, she passed away peacefully and pain-free with all her family . . . children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren . . . around.

My mother-in-law, fortunately, had passed the critical stage and is recovering from serious pneumonia.

My thanks to all those who have expressed sympathy and condolences. Your thoughts are very much appreciated.

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