Which isn't to say that I haven't been knitting; I have. But one of the projects that I started after finally finishing Elektra is unbloggable, and the other is Rick's socks, which are seriously not all that interesting. I've turned the heel on the second one, though, and will be knitting that at my conference this week. With luck, I'll also make solid headway on the unbloggable project on the plane, and this knit blog will start including knitting again.
Meanwhile, though, look over here! Nature photos!
On Friday, Rick and I headed up into the foothills for a night away, leaving the girls with their Memere and Grandpa (not to mention my aunt and cousin); everyone seemed happy with the arrangement, and Rick and I were tremendously excited to get a little bit of time to ourselves, which is a rare treat. We decided to stay in Nevada City, which meant that we could go for a hike on the Yuba River in the afternoon. We got lucky, and missed the rain in the foothills, as well as the huge hailstorm that pounded Sacramento after we left.
When we arrived, the cold front still hadn't quite blown through, so we parked and ate our lunch in the car before heading out. Rick noticed this little owl parked in a tree next to us. Do you see in that second photo that she's got eyes in the back of her head? (Obviously a mother bird.) She sat there the whole time we were eating and watched us go.
We headed upriver, along a trail that climbed and climbed, until we were well above the river itself. I don't know if you can see it down there, through the trees?
(Do you know how hard it is to capture "vertical" on a camera? I tried, truly I did. We're probably 150 feet above the water there.)
We also went down to the river at one point, slipping and sliding, when I saw something that looked like a bit of Engineering. I was right.
Rick was pleased.
It was a dam that someone had cleverly built at a narrow place in the river, taking advantage of the natural outcropping of rocks by piling up logs, pouring concrete around them, and running huge bolts through the whole thing to hold it together, probably in a pyramidal form, to judge by the bolt placement. We're pretty sure that it was put there for hydraulic mining, maybe at some point during the Gold Rush, maybe later.
You can see where the concrete fit around the logs; some of the wood is still there, low-down.
The view upriver was pretty spectacular, too.
And the rocks have worn away into lovely smooth shapes. Have I mentioned that I like rocks?
We scrambled back up the hill and kept hiking for a while, until we came to this lovely wonderland of trees.
It was like a fairy forest, and the colors!
But we couldn't keep hiking forever (tempting though it was), so we turned around and headed back. And at the very end, we came across more Engineering (it was a good day for Rick).
We'd driven across it to park without quite realizing what it was.
So Rick was happy.
And me? I got to wear wool. And it just doesn't get much better than that.
I'm going to get to wear more wool this week, since I'm heading to Philadelphia at yeurgh o'clock on Wednesday morning to go to a conference. I won't be posting until I'm back, so send presentation-success thoughts my way, if you can spare them. (Also, this is your last chance to tell me if I absolutely should not wear Elektra in public; my fate is in your hands.) Have a great week!