Sunday, December 28, 2008

Tristan's Birthday..hiking without dogs, with dogs and hanging with the critters

Gilligan and Billy along the trail by Lake Frank

Billy starting the hike
Tristan, Gilligan and Billy at Lake Frank (Billy is in the lake in the background..making use of his new water skills!)

Crossing the bridge over one of the feeder streams

Gilligan and Billy (Gilligan taking a breather for a moment...Billy still has too much energy!)

Today Tristan celebrated his 39th birthday (for real). Next year he has not entirely decided what birthday to celebrate, but now has 363 days to decide.

To celebrate we started our day by walking the dogs to Starbucks at about 7 a.m.. Today Billy decided to sleep in a little. At Starbucks, the dogs did not get coffee, but we did (we need coffee to keep up with Billy at least). The dogs also got lots of affection which was given and stolen (both Billy and Gilligan kind of molest people for affection by running into hand height they almost always are assured they get a pet this way). After coffee, we walked back home and woke up my sister (although this part of the sentence is not "we"--family rules say we cannot call my sister until noon on weekend...I respect this rule). But in fact because it's his birthday (and rules do not apply, right??) Tristan called my sister and invited her to come hike the Billy Goat trail by Great Falls. This is a pretty tough trail that dogs are not allowed. Cindy agreed so we met up on the Maryland side of Great Falls and had a nice 3+ hour hike. By the end my hands were pretty mangled, Cindy's legs might have been worse for the wear (she kept getting her foot stuck in rock crevases she couldn't get out), but Tristan survived pretty well. Guess his mountaineering training is paying off!

The trail is interesting (code for super difficult!) and there are a few sections which are very steep (and entail a bit of climbing) right next to the Potomac River. On a positive note, we all noticed kayakers not to far. Maybe they would rescue us. Although in our little trifecta of Massie/Parliment family members I think every person was named in another person's will making for interesting cliff-side trash talking!

After our hike along the Billy Goat trail it was time to go home and exercise some dogs. Seriously we got close to exhausting Billy yesterday and we are optimistic that we can CRUSH his spirit over the next few days. So we took him and Gilligan to Lake Frank, the second lake in the Rock Creek Park system. We hiked for about 1.5 hours until it started raining a bit. I think Tristan caved and decided we should turn back. Billy does seem to be settling down (or else perhaps our spirit has been crushed). But all three (Tristan, Gilligan and Billy) did get to do one section that loops around called "old Nasty" which is a tough hill they all raced up. I am not clear who won but can attest that Gilligan reached me first on the other side.

After this small hike we returned home and Tristan and I went out for dinner. Tristan debated extensively between Red Rock Canyon (which has good pineapple upside down cake) and Caraba's (which has an amazing chocolate Kahlua brownie cake/mousse dessert). We decided Red Rock since exactly a week from now it is my BIRTHDAY. I will, as usual, be 25! I have no idea where gets their age for me but obviously it is a typo, right?


Jamie Donaldson said...

Happy Birthday Tristan!

Tristan said...

Thanks a lot Jamie! It was great thanks to Tammy.
I know it's late to say so but congratulations on your AWESOME result at the 24 hour World championships. That's quite an accomplishment to add to your many others. Happy holidays to you and David and Morrison!