Monday, August 6, 2012

Take a hike!

So this summer has gone by much faster than expected. My critters spent a total of 3 1/2 weeks in Vermont with Nana and Papa and I have been working during a five week summer school session. I was originally supposed to work just three days a week, but I've been involved with a giant project at work and my hours have ranged from 29 to 40+ hours. So much for part time. It seems like just yesterday that we were getting out of school for the summer and now it's August already. I was lamenting the fact that summer is almost over and I've yet to do anything really fun with the kids (Rob has been home with them while I've been working so they've been to the pool and the park and whatnot), so I decided today that we were going to have an adventure. So we went here:
It's a castle that was built on top of a mountain nearby. A friend of mine from work said he hiked it the other day and it was a nice hike. I forgot to ask how difficult a hike it was and if it would be conducive to hiking with three children under the age of ten. We started out enthusiastically, even for those who would not have chosen to go on said hike. The trail was pretty steep and rocky, but everyone walked the entire way. We saw some wildlife. Caleb somehow managed not only to spot, but then to catch a frog! He was so excited!
I wish I had taken a picture of how steep the climb was (I was too busy making sure everyone made it to worry about taking a picture), but it was impressive that we all made it to the top without incident. Chloe took a little spill right at the top, but she was just fine. The view was amazing!
Getting down, however, was a completely different story. The mountain was so steep, I didn't know how we would all get back down. So when I saw there was a road you can drive up to the castle (amazing what you discover after you get there), I figured it'd be best for little legs to walk down the road instead of down the mountain. If only I had realized how long the road really was, I would have changed my plan. It turned out to be four miles-ish. At least a mile up the steep, steep hill, and then another four back down. At least it was all downhill. I ended up carrying Chloe on my back for a good portion of it, but the big two made it every step by themselves. I was very impressed. They weren't happy about it all, but they made it and I'm sure they will sleep very well tonight. Caleb made another friend on the way down the mountain:
I honestly don't know how he spots these things. It was a difficult hike for everyone, but I think in a few days (weeks, or years) we will all look back and laugh at the time Mom made everyone hike up to the castle. Enjoy these (totally unedited, straight off my phone) pictures of my happy hikers.