Monday, August 22, 2011

Really, Really High Fiber and the Last of the Summer Wildflowers

We're talking nosebleed section here: 11,943'. Here's the view:

No, this isn't a view from an airplane; it's the view from the summit, where we ate our lunch and staved off hail.

The hike up Bald Mountain wasn't as difficult as I expected. (This is not the Bald Mountain of composer Mussorgsky fame as performed in "Fantasia." This one is a mountain in the Uintas, in Utah.) One of our friends who went on the hike suggested that our pups should stay in the trailer, because they might have to be "carried" over the rocks. I said if they needed to be carried, I certainly would have to be. Rocky and Sunny are little mountain goats! (They showed him!)

It was nice to get back to the campfire, though, where I finished my Limeade Socks and modeled them for fellow campers:

After plying my Knit Picks Wool of the Andes Merlot Heather spinning fiber singles, I started with this lovely blue merino:

I bought the spinning fiber at Twisted in Portland. It's PA merino from the Falklands, dyed by the Oregon dyer, Pico Accuardi. I am going to three-ply it, so I had divided it into three equal (I hope) parts.

The plied Merlot Heather turned out nicely after washing and skeining:

And a closeup:

It's about fingering weight, a two-ply, from probably the most consistent singles I've spun so far.

I started some blue socks using Knit Picks Stroll hand painted in "Lullaby." It's a tonal yarn with shades of bright blue to almost purple. As you can see, it often gives you stripes. With my usual vivid imagination, I've decided to call them the Lullaby Socks.

The pattern is K2, P2 rib every other rnd, alternating with a rnd of straight K. The sock yarn and the Merlot Heather spinning fiber are available from Knit Picks here.

We did a lot of hiking during our camping trip. Four full-day hikes, in fact, including the one to the top of Bald Mountain. There are some lovely ponds and lakes in the Uintas, providing the pups with some swimming, something they really enjoy. 

The wildflowers were lovely. (I'm afraid the beautiful colors of the flowers are all the inspiration I can provide for quilters this week, but DGD1’s quilting fabrics should be at the PO awaiting pick up.)

They are late this year, probably because of the cool summer and the excess rain we've had. Flowers are lovely, but the wet conditions also brought Mosquitos, deer flies and horse flies! Which was why I was spinning in an outfit sprayed with DEET and fastened at the ankles and wrists. This is very unusual here.

The pups found that they could stay clear of the bugs by keeping on the move:

In several of the high-elevation ponds we found a lot of not-quite-mature amphibians:

They don't look like frogs to me. Salamanders?

This doe made an appearance at our campsite every evening:

Other interesting sightings during our camping trip included a train of pack goats. We have seen horses, mules and llamas used as pack animals, but this is the first time we had seen goats used this way.

I had been working on an article about Camp Hobe for the Therapy Animals of Utah (a Delta Society affiliate) newsletter and wishing I had interviewed someone from the administration of Camp Hobe, which is a summer camp for children impacted by cancer. It was just about too late, since the deadline was Monday. Some young ladies pulled into the campsite next to us at Washington Lake, and came to borrow some utensils for their friend's bachelorette party. (They remembered the wine and the cups, but forgot to bring plates and cutlery!) It turned out that one of them was on the committee for Camp Hobe. I was able to get a good interview with her. What a wonderful coincidence!

It was a very eventful week, but I missed my Internet friends!

(OK, this isn't really wildlife, but maybe just as entertaining: our DGD2, Daphne, who just turned 15 months, photo provided just because I know my KP friend Judith needs a Daphne fix.)

What's on my needles: Still the Bees' Knees (making progress) and the new Lullaby socks.
What's on my wheel: The PA merino. (Yes, I took Stanzi, my Kromski Sonata spinning wheel camping.)
What's on my iPad: Getting caught up with Yarnspinner's Tales podcast, The audiobook Deliver Us From Evil by David Baldacci, from the library.
What's on my nightstand: Cat Bordhi's book New Pathways for Sock Knitters.
What's my app of the week: SCRABBLE Free. (It kept some friends busy around the campfire, so I could knit!)
What's in my wine glass: Fish Eye Pinot Noir 2010, appropriate, since we saw a few fish eyes while camping.

Note: This blog post was produced entirely on the iPad. No other computer was used in any stage of composition or posting, not even my MacBook, and no Windows were opened, waited for or cleaned.


  1. The pictures are gorgeous! What a fantastic adventure. I love the Limeade socks and the new blue ones are a quite pretty color.

    A great AP for the iPad is Word Jewels XL. It is enjoyable, educational and addictive and Free.

    Keep up the fantastic adventures and the great knitting Peggy.

  2. Amazing pictures and lil Daphne is a doll baby..