Re-post: Cabin in the woods

23 09 2010

I’m reposting a collage of photos from one of our favorite road trips with my friend Sue and her mother, Wanda. I think we’re overdue for a trip, SueBee!

Originally posted 9.22.2008
One of our favorite treats during our recent vacation was a night’s stay at Jim and Anne’s cabin in a park near Mt. Rainier. We headed to the cabin on Friday morning, September 12, stopping along the way for huckleberry ice cream (which is delicious, by the way). Learn more about huckleberry harvesting in the Cascades here. In the first photo, Sue tries out a chair fashioned from snow skis at the ice cream store in Enumclaw. (If you have a hankering for this type of furniture, check out Snow Shack and Snow Source.)

Michael and I kept Sue quite enthralled, if somewhat frightened, with our stories of “when, not if, Rainier (an active volcano) blows…” She was pondering the possibility of it blowing that very night. We told her to relax. At least her best friends and mamma were with her and her last supper was huckleberry ice cream. How bad is that?

Some time ago, Michael and I had seen a documentary on tv hypothesizing the outcome of such an event. I did some further research and found these articles:

Vocanologists keep wary eye on Mount Rainier
Mount Rainier will blow, that’s a given. (How’s that for an opening line?)

Under the Volcano—the danger of living near Mt. Rainier

Hmmm…now that I’ve done this research, I’m rethinking how good that huckleberry ice cream was after all!


Photos, second row: Sue sits on a bed on the enclosed porch. What a view we had in the morning! The cabin was built by Anne’s father and grandfather when her father was a teenager, so it’s over 70 years old. It’s a beautifully rustic cabin with modern conveniences, of course, such as electricity, a detached bathroom and shower, and appliances. I found lots of things to photograph within the cabin itself, such as the blue bottle still life by the living room window (3rd row, right). Fifth row: Wanda climbs the ladder to check out the sleeping alcove in the cupola. Next, I photographed her “hiking” shoes by firelight. Those city girls sure do hike in style, don’t they?

After settling in, Anne and Jim lead us on a hike up to Goat Falls, which runs down the hill past their cabin. Sue had to keep Wanda from her “mushroom tipping” tendencies because she knew I would be coming up behind them, photographing everything along the way. Apparently, Wanda has an aversion to wild mushrooms (not to mention snakes).

Later, Jim and Anne prepared a wonderful dinner. After a great night’s sleep, the next morning Sue and Wanda wanted their photo taken at the outhouse, which, thanks to the modern conveniences, we did not have to use. And yes, Sue is acting—not really utilizing—the facilities in the photograph toward the bottom!

The trip to the cabin, hiking to the falls, and staying overnight in that beautiful cabin was a really nice and unexpected treat, thanks to our wonderful hosts, Anne and Jim!

And in the “how away far was it” category—I am happy to report that this trip was a “one-hat” trip, since I finished a “special order” crocheted black hat as a gift for Anne en route. Learn more about my exclusive “how many hats trip measurement system” here.

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.

Aftermath of Mount St. Helens

15 12 2009

I realize this isn’t an award-winning shot, but I wanted to share this 35mm scan anyway. I shot this image of thousands of fallen trees—looking like so many pickup sticks—from a helicopter during a tour of Mount St. Helens around 1998 or so. The guide took us over the top of the crater of volcano (and yes, it’s still active—you can see continuous puffs of smoke from overhead) and through the valley. The devastation of May 18, 1980, was evident through all the new growth. The helicopter had a glass-bottom area (disconcerting and thrilling at the same time!), so I could see herds of elk migrating through the valley.

The volcano began a dome-building eruption in September 2004 after nearly two decades of relative inactivity. I just read on Wikipedia that the last activity was in January 2008. In July of the same year, scientists determined the eruption had ended after more than six months of no volcanic activity. Check out the USDA Forest Service’s VolcanoCam, with near real-time images of Mount St. Helens, taken from the Johnston Ridge Observatory. And if you’re curious about the current seismic activity—as well as other interesting information—check out this page here35mm slide scanned by

© Cindy Dyer. All rights reserved.