Beacon Rock beckons

We want the Pie to understand and appreciate the outdoors, we want her to grow up with a respect for nature and a preservationist’s mind. We want her to learn about living outdoors and how people have lived for most of human history. We want her to see the impact that people have on the planet.

So last weekend, we took her camping for the first time. We went to Beacon Rock on the Columbia River with friends Nathan and Morgan.

We drove into the park, set up camp and headed off for a hike to Little Beacon Rock.

From Little Beacon Rock you can see Beacon Rock, right on the Columbia River. It’s pretty impressive.

Then we decided to hike back toward the waterfalls, and we found a black Morel mushroom. We cut it and planned to eat it for dinner, and then promptly forgot about it.


We finally got to the waterfalls, and peeked at the biggest through the trees.

I love seeing trail architecture, and these are some pretty steps. We’ll come back to this in a moment.


The Mountain Man and the Pie took a dip in the creek. I don’t think she has any sensation of cold. She loves water, and so do I. Swimming in a warm ocean is about the best thing I can think of.











A cold creek, however, is not my cup of tea. So here, the Pie and the Mountain Mama stick to the shores.

And ooh la la the Mountain Man climbs back up those steps.

Nice architecture indeed.

Back at camp, the Pie plays with her new bucket. She does this funny tongue-twisting-biting thing on the side of her mouth when she’s getting into something or experimenting. My mom saw it the other day and said I used to do the exact same thing! I don’t know if it’s common baby stuff or if it’s inherited behavior. Either way, it’s cute.

Morgan and the Mountain Man teach me and Nathan how to play Rummy by firelight. I usually don’t play cards. I get mean.

The Pie decides it’s time for bed. Look at that crank face.

The Pie and the Mountain Man have a little heart-to-heart about sleeping in the tent. No screaming, says Daddy. No kicking. No crawling around in the middle of the night. Just snuggles and sleeps.

It almost looks like she’s listening, doesn’t it? Ha.

Camping with a baby isn’t quite as easy as it seems. There was no place for her to crawl around, so she was a little cranky and squirmy. Naps were long productions for short payout, since the light glowed through that little green tent. (Are there any green light district jokes?) Night sleep was equally difficult with lots of waking and kicking and extra nursing. We’ll do it again, but we’ll do it a little smarter.

Next time we’ll take a look at our hike up Beacon Rock, which is 850 feet of elevation gain in less than a mile. It was good, not the worst the Mountain Man has taken me on (he considers 1,000ft in one mile a good gain) but I could definitely feel it in my quads. And my butt. And my hamstrings. And my hips.

Until then, no squirming or fussing or kicking. Only snuggles & sleeps.

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