Dwight Peck's personal Web site

April 2012 views in the Jura

Two blissfully snowy hikes when we thought that Inhofe's Summer had already come


You may not find this terribly rewarding unless you're included here, so this is a good time for casual and random browsers to turn back before they get too caught up in the sweep and majesty of the proceedings and can't let go.

Dog-walking on Grand Cunay

14 April: we've had a month of Inhofe's Global Warming weather, very disspiriting, but this a weekend just like the old days.

The snow is nearly gone, three weeks earlier than usual -- that's 3 Inhofe Units ahead of schedule, but today we're blessed with a blustery sleety squall coming in at the Col du Marchairuz, and it's Game On.

Somewhere in front of us, though, on the Chemin des Crêtes, something keeps moving ahead, off to the sides, behind the rocks and trees, maybe it's there, maybe it's not.

A few kilometers out, the Chalet des Monts de Bière Derrière, and something has preceded us here; we're certain.

Always darting ahead, running in circles above and below the trail, darting back to stare at us, implacably; leading us up over the next ridge, or more precisely following us from the front, it's the Ghostdog.

Ghostdog is running in circles, sniffing, poking, glancing back to make sure we're still there, as the Grand Cunay looms ahead.

Ghostdog at the trail sign

Going up the Grand Cunay: this is when we finally realized that Ghostdog had a plan, or a system, or habit -- he was always just at the limit of foggy visibility, staring down, waiting to see if we were following along as expected. Then darting on ahead.

The farm on top of Grand Cunay

The damn dog has run on ahead and we can't just leave him . . . or it, whatever.

The dog gave up waiting for us and bounded back to see what was what. We shouted "home" against the wind and pointed back down, and off he went.

Ghostdog exploring

Ghostdog sniffing round under the trees

Monts de Bière Derrière, and no sign of the dog

We try whistling, and there he (it) is.

We were afraid to leave him out there, but he knows the place better than we do.

We can't see him . . . it, but we hear some thrashing about on the ridge up on the right.

Ghostdog looks back to see if we're still keeping up.

Ghostdog snuggled down out of the weather. He looks like he belongs here.

It's almost as if he were saying goodbye. [Ghostdog's a she, named Lily.]


Kristin and Mont de Bière Devant

The next day, 15 April, Kristin leads off towards Mont de Bière Devant.

At first, the sheer slushiness of the occasion gives pause, but we quickly get into the spirit of it.

The forestry chaps have been zealous and energetic all round here.

Kristin, from Wisconsin, knows a good deal about unsustainable forestry and isn't pleased.

Kristin, with Joe the waterbottle hanging out before

Kristin and Joe

Dead End. Not really.

Doubtful

Suitably reassured

In fact, happy

Another dead end

A short-cut

Balconies of the Jura

The summit of Mont de Bière Devant is in sight.

Blustery weather

Mont de Bière Devant with buddhist prayer flags or whatever

Kristin comparing the iced-over panorama with the fogged-over world around us

Time to race for home. Chris and Uschi are coming for dinner at 7:30.

The chef is in more of a hurry than the sous-chef is.

A glorious day out, when we thought that the Republican Summer had already condemned us to another heat wave.

Kristin likes snowy days as much as we do, especially with her pink mittens on.

A short-cut down the gulley, possibly ill-advised -- it's filled with forestry débris, frequently waist-deep.

Intrepid and determined, and probably doomed

Kristin leads us out onto solid ground again, and Üli the VW is not far off. And we made it home in time for the chef to rustle up a dinner, with the sous-chef cutting up the onions.


Feedback and suggestions are welcome if positive, resented if negative, . All rights reserved, all wrongs avenged. Posted 16 April 2012.


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