Sunday, September 23, 2012

Mount Washington!

Hey everyone! Yesterday, I did something super awesome...I climbed Mount Washington! Yes, we actually hiked it. Not that that's hard to believe, but there is a road you can drive up and a little train that will take you to the top. Even though those are probably less tiring ways of getting to the summit, we took the challenge of hiking there! Mount Washington is the highest peak in the northeastern United States, at 6,289 feet.
We got up super early in the morning, around 4:50am, because we were carpooling with some friends who would be hiking with us. We left around 5:30am. We stopped at Dunkin Donuts on the way, and Skye let me get a doughnut AND coffee! I don't normally get to drink coffee, so this was pretty special. It took us about 2 hours to get there. Once we arrived, we made sure we had everything, and went inside the place at the bottom to go to the bathroom and plan out our route to the top.
                                      Here I am in front of the model of the mountains.

Around 8:00am we began our ascent!
Along the way, we saw a lot of waterfalls. They were so pretty!

I posed for a picture in front of this waterfall, but you can't really see it.

Skye took this one of me while I was hiking up.

There was a rest stop about half way up the mountain called the Caretakers Cabin. You could go to the bathroom, take a rest, and refill your water bottle there. Behind me is Mt. Washington.

I took this one as we began to hike above the fog. Look at the clouds! It was like looking down at a lake, only they were clouds!

We stopped to take a break at one of the cairns. Skye took this picture of me with a bunch of lovely scenery behind me.

This is the view of Tuckerman's Ravine from the Lion Head trail.

Here's the "Lion's head", what the Lion Head trail is named after. To tell you the truth, I don't see the Lion's head, but maybe that's just me.

Here's the view of the clouds. Pictures don't do the view justice; it was like looking at an ocean of fluffy white fluff.

Here I am in front of the sea of fluffy white fluff, with other mountaintops peeking through.

In this one, Tuckerman's Ravine is behind me. It was kind of creepy sitting up there, because we were so high up.

Looking down, you could see the Caretakers Cabin and the little ponds near it. It was amazing to think just a few hours before we had been down there looking up!

About an hour later, we had made it to the summit!!!
My hair was blowing all around and was super crazy, because there were 50mph gusts of wind. Skye had to stand behind me to make sure I didn't get blown off the top of the sign, it was that windy!
At the summit, there was a building with gift shops and a food court type place, where we rested for about a half hour. I ate lunch and then went into one of the gift shops. I got a cute little pin for my jacket that said I climbed Mount Washington.
Before we started the hike back down, I took a picture with the State Park sign. 

This is what the climb to and from the summit looks like. It's really, really rocky!
Believe it or not, I think the climb back down the mountain is harder than the climb up. This is because you have to be careful not to tumble down head first. It's also really hard on your knees.

This was taken a little while after we had started to hike back down. That's Mount Washington behind me. On the very top and a little to the left, you can see sort of cell/radio tower looking things and a tiny building. We had been up there next to those things! We climbed all the was up the side of the mountain! I thought it was crazy to think that we had just been up there, and had hiked all of that.

The view from where we were standing was extraordinary. 

Hiking Mount Washington was so much fun. It was also really tiring! I slept for 12 hours, and when I woke up, my legs felt so stiff! The views were so pretty, and it was just a cool experience. Have you ever climbed a tall mountain? Do you like to hike?
This has been Dani, dabbling in climbing mountains. Over and out!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

The First Day of School / Apple Picking!

Hey everyone! Sorry I haven't posted in such a long time--school started, and all of a sudden I got super busy! First of all, I have soccer practice for two hours after school, so I come home and I'm really tired. But, I still have to do my homework, so by the time I finish that, I'm pretty wiped, and I just feel like going to bed. Anyway, enough with the negative stuff! I still need to tell you about my first day of school!
So, I started school on September 4th. This year, I'm not being homeschooled, but rather going to a private school! It's called Chesapeake Academy, and it's grades 6-8. I'm in 6th grade. It focuses mainly on the arts, but has a great academic curriculum. It's soccer team is pretty good, too!
On the first day, I was pretty nervous. I hadn't been to school in public in a while, so I was nervous about making friends and getting to all of my classes. I saw some of my friends from elementary school, and had a couple classes with them. All of my teachers are really nice, but some of them are strict, too. Now I'm worried I might do something wrong and have them get mad at me. Skye tells me not to worry, though, so I'm trying not to. Here is my picture from the first day!

That was what my first day was like, and these past few weeks have been pretty uneventful. However, this weekend, I went apple picking!
I love going apple picking, because it gets me into the fall mood, especially if I'm feeling nostalgic about summer. We go to a place called Ricker Hill, which is extremely beautiful, and a great place to pick apples. 
First, we picked apples. We picked about 20 pounds of McIntoshes, because we think those are the best for eating (which they are!).

I reached for a bright red apple on a tall branch.

It was too tall, though, and I was feeling up for a little adventure, so I decided to climb the tree!
I reached out to the apple.

Here I am in a pile of huge apples!

Once we were done picking the apples, I decided to check out the pumpkins. It was still pretty early in the season, so there weren't as many as there could have been. Nonetheless, there were still a sizable amount to choose from.
They were huge! This one was so big, I could barely pick it up!

I balanced on top of the big pile, and pretended I was a mountain climber trying not to get caught in an avalanche.
I decided not to get a pumpkin this time, because it was still pretty early and there wasn't much of a selection. We'll probably go back in October, too, so I'll maybe get one then.

Once we were done scouting out the pumpkins, we went over to pick grapes. They had grapes this year, which was pretty new. Skye decided that we should go and see how they were, and get some if we liked them. When we were in the grape section, I looked down row after row; they stretched out so far! It was beautiful!

It was the perfect time of day to pick them, too. The sun shined through the translucent fruits, and was absolutely gorgeous.

I tested out the purple ones. They were unlike any other grapes I had had before! They were delicious!

I thought that these grapes would be a good kind to pick.

I sat in a little thicket of grass with the bunch of grapes I had just picked, and popped them one by one in my mouth. Picking fruit is always fun, because of the built in snack!
They were such a pretty dark purple color, and so juicy and sweet!

Before long, it was time to go. I snapped this picture while walking back to the car. What a pretty place Ricker Hill is.

Even though I miss summer, I like fall activities, such as soccer and apple picking. The fall foliage always gets me in a more fall-y mood, too. How was your first day of school? Have you gone apple picking yet? Do you miss summer?
This has been Dani, dabbling in first days and fruit picking. Over and out!