Vernon was born in the Pacific Northwest and still lives in the shadow of Mt. Hood, near the small town where he grew up. Vernon has spent decades wandering the hills, hunting mushrooms, camping and riding motorcycles into the remotest nooks and crannies to be found in the region.
I had been wanting to get back up to New Chanty Camp to finish the wikiup and some other projects. When my corporate masters sent me home again on Tuesday, I loaded the dog in the sidecar and headed out to spend the day in the woods. We found this makeshift mail drop when we met Mike at the Park and Ride on the way up to camp. The Contagion has resulted in some strange work-arounds.
To avoid The Contagion, we brought our own food and drink and kept our distance, putting on our masks when distance wasn’t practical. I got a fire going and we popped open a couple of beers. Mike had a sandwich and I burned a hot dog. Despite how it looked, it tasted great.
Cap’n Ron was furloughed from the clinic, too. We rode past him in the woods where he was gleefully exercising his new chainsaw, reducing fallen trees to chips and splinters. Walter announced the Captain’s arrival in camp with a furious barrage of barking.
Cap’n Ron roasted a bratwurst while I wove more vine maple into the wikiup frame. He dropped it in the dirt as soon as it was cooked, but claimed the added texture was an improvement.
Mike thought he heard the sound of a poorly tuned lawnmower approaching.
Andy rode his KLR into camp about the time Cap’n Ron was brushing the dirt off of his lunch.
After lunch, we decided to go for a short hike. We walked to the top of the mountain, where the road ends at an old landing.
On our way back down the hill we ranged through the woods, looking for mushrooms.
We didn’t find any, but it was a pleasant ramble.
Back in camp, we had hot chocolate laced with rum…
…and roasted some marshmallows.
Cap’n Ron roasted another brat…
,,, he dropped that one in the dirt, too.
Mike and Cap’n Ron succumbed to nappishness.
Andy carved decorations into the wikiup posts….
….and I started burning out a burl to make a cup.
The shadows were growing longer, so we doused the fire, packed up and headed home.