Taaminara (taaminara) wrote,

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Snowrun - two posts for the price of one! hehe

Yesterday I woke up to more snow falling from the surprized Seattle skies. I apparently have the world's best timing, for upon asking the barista how long it had been snowing, I learned that it had only started about 10 minutes before I emerged from the warm womb of my bed. (For those who know what time it started - *shush* it was saturday; I'm allowed, lol). Cabin fever was beginning to set in, for though I had ventured out somewhat, I did not feel comfy doing so after dark, when temperatures drop and things start to re-freeze, and once the sun skips out for the night, I feel basically trapped at home. So, I took the remaining good hours of daylight, grabbed my camera, and ventured out into the snow, taking all the back roads. The snowfall was steady, and heavier the nearer I got to Issaquah, so going was slow. I looped out SR900 to May Valley and stopped on that little road that hooks back up to SE128th the name of which I can never remember. I had taken some nice shots there before, in the fall when the trees were changing. May Valley Road was not bad, all in all. I went all the way to Issaquah-Hobart, and headed North. I stopped by the field where paragliders land in the summer and shot some more frames, but it's hard to focus through heavy snowfall. I circled through the 'Quah and headed back SR900 to the Cougar Mountain trail head. I found a pair of gloves I had forgotten about and probably never actually worn in (of all places) the glovebox of my car, and gleefully put them on. After taking a few shots, the chill started to set in despite my newfound gloves, so I decided to generate some heat and wake my muscles up with a little hike. I set off up the trail at a brisk pace, but was soon stopped by the need to photograph a partially frozen creek, with downed branches trailing intricate formations of icicles into the water. I moved on before my fingers could freeze, nearly jogging up the frozen trail.

The snow was exhilirating, still filtering down softly through the mostly-barren forest canopy as I hiked, my breath in cloudy puffs lingering in the crystalline air. The recent storms were evident - trees down every which-way, bright wooden cracks slicing into the black-and-white landscape like a rude reminder that the world really is in colour under all this snow and northwest winter-grey, as though the dark months here at the bottom of the calendar exist only in smudgy newsprint.

Snow is tricky - under the ethereal cloud cover, it both darkens and brightens the timbre of the scene. Photography-wise, details are hard to capture and colours nearly impossible. I hiked, fast and hard, until I broke a sweat, and then would stop when something caught my eye, or I needed to catch my breath. Click off a few frames...an old cedar tree down across the ravine; fern leaves on a rock, still green; evergreen branches across the path, then off again once I got cold. I repeated this until the grade got too steep for me to want to hike back down with the path coated in packed snow.

I made my way back down fast, running to keep warm, and still had to stop a few times to photograph things which I had not noticed from the opposite angle.

Back in the car, I let it warm back up before going anywhere, and thawed my fingers over the heater. The gloves had helped, for sure, but...it was still extremely cold out there.

I took nearly seventy pictures, and am still sorting through them. Most were a wash due to heavy snowfall, but there are a couple worthwhile ones. I will post them once I am done with the 'triage'.
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