Monday, September 15, 2014

Off the Rails at Railroad Grade

(continued from "An Overnight Adventure with My Hubby at Park Butte")

Have you ever heard of Mumbley Peg? I hadn't either, but my husband introduced me to it when we got back to camp and found we had hours on our hands with not a whole lot to do. 

If you have heard of the game, chances are you played it differently. I looked it up when I got home, and found multiple variations; but here is Ken's version: 1) Stand facing each other a couple feet apart  2) Take a pocket knife and try to stick it in the ground where your opponent has to reach their foot to touch it 3) Continue taking turns back and fourth until someone cannot spread their legs far enough to touch the knife (now for the "fun" part; the penalty for losing) 4) Find a "peg" of some sort; in this case a small twig 5) Dig a hole for the peg and stick it in until it is flush with the ground 5) Watch with amusement as loser has to pull out peg with their mouth. (harder than you think, because your teeth can't reach it due to your nose getting in the way) Oh the games boys come up with to entertain themselves!

I win?
I don't think Ken expected me to get the hang of it so quickly. Just as Ken was kissing the ground, our mysterious campsite companion came around the corner. How strange that he decided to take his tent elsewhere.

Nice to meet you!
Actually, we did know why he decided to move. The reason this camp was completely full was because of all days and places, we chose to come backpacking in the same spot as a middle school field trip. Greg (one of the teachers) explained that he was glad to have had a site "away from it all" for one night, but that he had really better camp with the group for the last night. We offered to teach the kids Mumbley Peg...can't imagine why he wasn't interested. ;) 
Everyone get in line; we have knives to pass out!
I have to say, considering there were hordes of seventh graders running around, our "away from it all" spot really was pretty peaceful...until the guys we met in the parking lot the day before showed up. Sheesh, we couldn't catch a break! 
The Project Pressure gang

It was all good though. They were interesting to talk to; working on something called "Project Pressure" and taking photos of glacial melt all around the world. We had easy conversation about environmental stuff and funny camping stories; though when Mumbley Peg came up, they were not interested in playing either. I just can't understand why some people are not excited about licking dirt. 
High camp would have been pretty awesome;
maybe next time

I'm not sure if I should explain how we got to the top of Railroad Grade the next day; because we did not use the "official" trail. The sign in the parking lot clearly said to only use "official" trails, though by the look of the trail we ended up utilizing, we are not the only naughty people around. I'll just say that if your coming down from Cathedral Camp, it's not too difficult to find a short cut climbers trail to the left. After getting close enough to the glacier to get some good photos, we "officially" came down Railroad Grade; which officially made me REALLY appreciate not going up that way. 
After finishing the hike we were in no hurry to get home, so we decided to stop for a late lunch at Birdsview Brewing Co. I'm so glad we did, because we ended up staying three hours just enjoying their beautiful beer garden, loaner guitars, and hospitality of one of the nicest restaurant owners I have ever met. I highly recommend stopping in if you can. (their Dirty Blonde beer is amazing!)
And so, after all that belly aching about Washington state, Ken found on our adventure: 1) No rain 2) No bugs 3) No wet tent from dew in the morning 4)Yummy beer. So I say, no more excuses! From now on, he has to come with me more often. Only next time, I'm bringing a deck of cards!  
Mumbley peg, shumbley peg!

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