Random (but not really)

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Sunday Flower Pr0n: WV Botanic Garden

The weather threatened storms most of the day, so when it cleared in the later afternoon, we made a quick, late trip to the WV Botanic Garden.

Not as many flowers blooming as I was expecting, and the humidity was vile, but it was still a nice walk. Also, the spring peppers were going crazy. I thought about grabbing a video clip of how loud they were, but I’d left my phone in the car.

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Dogwood (Cornus florida)

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Blackberry (Rubus fruticosus)

Various Rhododendron:

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Violets

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Allium

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probably an apple

Written by Michelle at 6:00 am      Comments (6)  Permalink
Categories: Flowers,Photos,West Virginia  

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Hiking WV: Coopers Rock State Forest

Friday afternoon was gorgeous, so we of course went out to Coopers Rock.

Location: Coopers Rock State Forest
Trails: Unofficial, Clay Run, Mont Chateau, Rhododendron, Ridge, Rock City, Eagle Trails
Distance: 5.6 miles
Elevation: 1517-2256 feet (739 ft change)
Temperature: 74-71 F

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Happy Friday!

Map of the hike

Written by Michelle at 8:55 pm      Comments (1)  Permalink
Categories: Hiking,Photos,State Park / Forest,West Virginia  

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Sunday Flower Pr0n: Coopers Rock Wildflowers

Rainy Saturday, but today was gorgeous and there were lots of wildflowers at Coopers Rock.

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Trillium (Trillium grandiflorum)

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Red Trillium (Trillium erectum)

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Wood Geranium (Geranium maculata)

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?Foamflower (Tiarella cordifolia L.)?

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Spring beauty (Claytonia virginica)

Written by Michelle at 6:05 pm      Comments (1)  Permalink
Categories: Flowers,Photos  

Hiking WV: Coopers Rock

Sunday was a gorgeous day for a hike!

Location: Coopers Rock State Forest
Trails: Rhododendron, Mont Chateau, Clay Run, Unofficial Trails
Distance: 4.5 miles
Elevation: 1538-2096 feet
Temperature: 54-64 F

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This is a nice loop to do. Here’s what it looked like:

Written by Michelle at 5:15 pm      Comments (0)  Permalink
Categories: Hiking,Photos,State Park / Forest,West Virginia  

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Lovely Evening at Coopers Rock

The weather threatened rain and storms all weekend, so instead of hiking we just wandered around Coopers Rock yesterday evening, and sat at the Overlook for sunset.

Then we bugged out, as it started raining as we drove home.

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Written by Michelle at 11:12 am      Comments (4)  Permalink
Categories: Photos,State Park / Forest,West Virginia  

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Hiking WV: Coopers Rock State Forest

Two beautiful days in a row, so of course we went hiking at Coopers Rock.

Location: Coopers Rock State Forest
Trails: Clay Run, Mont Chateau, Rhododendron, Roadside Trails
Distance: 7.0 miles
Elevation: 1491-2329 feet
Temperature: 49-58 F

Busy beavers have been too busy to finish taking down that tree.

Or, they’ve been moved?

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Future tadpoles!

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Aside from parts of some of the trails that were super muddy, it was a wonderful hike.

Written by Michelle at 6:35 pm      Comments (0)  Permalink
Categories: Hiking,Photos,State Park / Forest,West Virginia  

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Hiking WV: Audra State Park

It may have snowed Friday, but Saturday was beautiful. We saw a bit of snow, but except for the very sheltered areas, it was gone by the time we headed home.

Location: Audra State Park
Trail: Alum Cave Trail
Distance: 3.3 miles
Elevation: 1674-1820 feet
Temperature: 49-59 F

The only trail is the Alum Cave Trail that runs along the Middle Fork River, but the river is in sight for pretty much the entire hike, so who cares if it’s out and back?

Goodbye snow.

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We saw the kayakers unloading. They caught up as we were sitting on a rock listening to the water.

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There are many little trails heading off the Alum Cave Trail to take you down to the water.

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There are a few deep areas like this, where the river looks calm, but with the river as high as it was, much of it was white water.

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It was a lovely day.

Written by Michelle at 7:48 pm      Comments (3)  Permalink
Categories: Hiking,Photos,State Park / Forest,West Virginia  

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

The Books of March

I was out of control in March. Seriously. The weather was mostly crap, so there was little hiking, and it felt like it rained most of the time, so even getting out to walk was unlikely. I read so much I’m not even going to tell you the number, because it’s ridiculous.

Why? Because I went on a binge to catch-up on as well as re-read several series. I re-read and finished Carrie Vaughn’s Kitty series, I got caught up (excluding the most recently book) Ilona Andrew’s Kate Daniel’s series. I’ve started re-reading Robert Crais’ Elvis Cole series, and I’ve begun (finally) Faye Kellerman’s Drecker and Lazarus series. (I finally went back and got another library card, and have been using Overdrive for a lot of books, which is AWESOME.)

So what was good? I really enjoyed the start of the Rat Queens comic series, even if book three went off the rails. I also finished Princess Ugg, and got caught up on the latest Rivers of London. I finally read (and loved) Randall Munroe’s What If?: Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions. It’s a delight.

And I finally got around to reading Daniel O’Malley’s The Rook, which I very much enjoyed.

And I’m now all caught-up on listening to Faith Hunter’s Jane Yellowrock series, and have shifted to listening to Robert B Parker’s Spenser series while I walk.

Mystery

Peter Decker and Rina Lazarus – Faye Kellerman
The Ritual Bath (1986), Sacred and Profane (1987), Milk and Honey (1990), Day of Atonement (1991), False Prophet (1992)
Elvis Cole – Robert Crais
The Monkey’s Raincoat (1987), Stalking the Angel (1989), Lullaby Town (1992), Free Fall (1993), Voodoo River (1995)

Historical Romance / Mystery

Dark Angel (1994) Tracy Grant
Shores of Desire (1997) Tracy Grant
Mission for a Queen (2016) Tracy Grant

Supernatural Fantasy

Salsa Nocturna: A Bone Street Rumba Collection (2012) Daniel José Older
The Rook (2012) Daniel O’Malley
Kate Daniels –  Ilona Andrews
Magic Bites (2007), Magic Burns (2008), Magic Strikes (2009), Magic Bleeds (2010), Magic Slays (2011), Magic Gifts (2011), Kate Daniels Short Stories
Gunmetal Magic (2012), Magic Rises (2013), Magic Breaks (2014), Magic Shifts (2015)
Kitty the Werewolf – Carrie Vaughn
Kitty and The Midnight Hour (2005), Kitty Goes to Washington (2006), Kitty Takes a Holiday (2007), Kitty and the Silver Bullet (2008), Kitty and the Dead Man’s Hand (2009), Kitty Raises Hell (2009), Kitty’s House of Horrors (2010), Kitty Goes to War (2010), Kitty’s Big Trouble (2011), Kitty’s Greatest Hits (2011), Kitty Steals the Show (2012), Kitty Rocks the House (2013), Kitty in the Underworld (2013), Low Midnight (2014), Kitty Saves the World (2015)

Fantasy

The Phoenix Guards (1991) Steven Brust

Comics

Rat Queens Vol. 2: Far Reaching Tentacles of N’rygoth (2015) Kurtis J Wiebe, Roc Upchurch, Stjepan Sejic
Rat Queens Volume 3: Demons (2016) Kurtis J. Wiebe, Tamra Bonvillain, Tess Fowler
Princess Ugg Volume 2 (2015) Ted Naifeh, Warren Wucinich
Mockingbird Vol. 1: I Can Explain (2016) Chelsea Cain, Joelle Jones, Ibrahim Moustafa, Kate Niemczyk
Rivers of London Volume 3: Black Mould (2017) Ben Aaronovitch

Non-Fiction

What If?: Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions (2014) Randall Munroe

Audio

Shadow Rites, Audible (2016) Faith Hunter narrated by Khristine Hvam

I read twice as many female authors as male authors last month, but the Robert Crais run is going to shift that back again for April.

Oh, I did read three mass-market paperback books, so I could finish the Kitty series, and the comics were trade paperback. So some paper this month, but only because I couldn’t find electronic copies of the books and was determined to get caught up.

Written by Michelle at 4:56 pm      Comments (0)  Permalink
Categories: Books & Reading  

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Hiking WV: Coopers Rock

The gate is open! We don’t have to hike the Roadside/Advanced Ski trails! Huzzah!

They’re not bad trails–after all, the Roadside trail is relatively flat and easy. The problem is that after a warm wet winter, the trails are a muddy disaster. That doesn’t mean the trails inside aren’t wet, just that most of them aren’t torn up from constant biking and hiking.

Location: Coopers Rock State Forest
Trails: Rhododendron, Mont Chateau, Ridge, Eagle Trails
Distance: 4.9 miles
Elevation: 1503-2232 feet
Temperature: 45-55 F

Because we’ve had a fair amount of rain, the creeks were running high, which meant, as I said, wet trails, but only the ridge trail was especially muddy, probably because it gets more bikers.

Here’s the creek at the bridge on the Mont Chateau trail. There was a lot of water running through.

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Just past the bridge, as the trail starts uphill, we saw this.

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Don’t think that’s what’s meant by “Leave Only Footprints”

Written by Michelle at 8:35 pm      Comments (0)  Permalink
Categories: Hiking,Photos,State Park / Forest,West Virginia  

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