A rabbit, snow, and white-knuckle driving in the Central Cascades

I know, you weren’t expecting to hear from me again. I had high hopes for blogging as I travelled the world, but then I took a break from traveling the world, moved to Portland, and became boring. That’s not 100% true, but my life has changed very much since I last posted.

Moving to Portland presented some new challenges: housing, for example…not exactly a walk in the park! After months of checking out sketchy tiny houses, overpriced micro studios, aptly named “butternut squash” apartments, and tons of dead end house shares, we finally hit “the Craigslist jackpot” as our housemates call it. In other words, we are now living in a beautiful Victorian mansion from the 1880s, right off the walk able downtown and NW districts of Portland- not to mention awesome housemates!! Somehow hiking trails are now even closer to my house than when I lived in Boulder (2 blocks away!). But getting to this point took lots of patience (and a couple of dog bites…).

Then there was the whole making friends thing and finding grocery stores and learning the layout of Portland and dabbling in slightly illegal parking and building a routine. And then there’s the job thing… While Ben has been working hard on starting his own health food delivery business (see: thrivehealthfully.com), I’ve started taking my photography career much more seriously, and recently began working at a Portland-based start-up as a photography intern (woohoo!).

So yeah, the blog has collected some dust.

But the adventures have continued!

For instance, I don’t know how I survived last weekend. What started as an impromptu trip to the Central Cascades, quickly became a very harrowing two day battle with icy forces of nature.

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I’ve missed serious snow footage and had been wanting to explore Washington for some time. So Ben and I spontaneously picked a tiny town called Roslyn on the Airbnb map and booked 1 night in a converted dentist’s office. Surprisingly less creepy than it sounds. We didn’t do much research on what to see or do, as we just wanted a little mountain escape, with the possibility of some friendly snowy hikes and alpiney photography opportunities, maybe even a dip in a hidden hot-spring, dare-say.

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The first stop on our 4 hour trip to Roslyn was Rattlesnake Lake. I’d wanted to check out this pretty lake for some time. As we rolled in it became obvious that the conditions were less than amenable. The wind was roaring so loudly, that I felt sure a freight train or an avalanche was bound to hit us as any moment.

img_6176Still, we ventured out to the lake for some quick windy fun and to check out the eerie tree stumps that line the shore and abruptly stick out from the frozen lake surface.

img_6156img_6161Later in the day we found ourselves trapped in the car for 3 hours on a closed section of highway between mountain passes as the temperature dropped to 14 degrees. It quickly became dark and Ben and I traded turns running outside the car to quickly scrape off the accumulation of snow from the windshield while we quietly hibernated for what seemed like a maddening eternity. It was truly scary not knowing when we would get to leave, surrounded by cars and semi trucks, with a quarter tank of gas and already shivering under every layer of clothing we could put on.

But finally, FINALLY police directed us off the highway and a half an hour later we were tucked into our warm dentist’s office/bedroom above a sweet little café.img_6283 It turns out the little town of Roslyn is not short on charm. The main street is comprised of little shops with Western style facades, a biker bar, a natural grocer, and its main celebrity: the Roslyn Rabbit. img_6291img_6284I actually didn’t know about the rabbit, until a drunken man staggering home at 8 am saw me taking photos and slurred “Hey did you get a pitture of the rabbit?! Come here, flippity flop. Flip flop come get some food!”img_6301Figuring he was looney tunes I ignored him until a little while later we spotted a friendly obese black bunny rabbit munching on some lettuce in the snow! It turns out the Roslyn Rabbit is just some wild rabbit that goes door to door begging for food and pets like a cat.

After sufficiently creeping on the rabbit and stuffing our faces with bacon and eggs, we drove to Cle Elum Lake, which I can’t really tell you anything about because it was buried beneath a blinding layer of ice and snow. Being out there was like being in a white vacuum, or that cookie thing from Season 3 of Black Mirror.

img_6322img_6358And lastly…the harrowing drive home. We decided to take “the scenic route”- mistake number 1, which entailed driving through 58 miles of a deserted unplowed road through a Native American reservation while it snowed heavily- mistake number 2. The road was so full of snow, we could barely make out any tire tracks as we drifted at an agonizingly slow pace, with frequent breaks to de-ice the windshield wipers.

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In the end we spent 7.5 hours in the car driving through one massive unrelenting snowstorm, with too many white-knuckle, adrenalin inducing, stomach churning, hair-greying moments to count.img_6268

But also many moments of spectacular beauty.

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Much love to my faithful CRV for making it through. ❤

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