Sunday, August 12, 2007

Take a Hike, Margot!

We have been talking for a long time about going hiking and getting Margot out in nature. Ben grew up in a family that hiked, camped and spent hours outdoors. I can count on one hand the number of times I have been camping, and hiking has never really seemed like much fun. However, we are going to start a new feature here at la casa de Jarrell and start taking a new hike each week. I will give a verdict after each hike and post plenty of pictures, and maybe inspire a few of our friends and family to follow in our footsteps! Let's begin, shall we?

Today we traveled to Ponytail Falls. We live in an amazing city that offers plenty of urban hikes, but since we are so close to this we decided to start here:

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Pretty nice, huh?

Ponytail Falls is part of a series of waterfalls near Multnomah Falls. We were able to drive there in about 20 minutes by following the Historic Columbia River Highway. Just past Multnomah Falls and Wahkeena Falls is the trail head. The hike is advertised as "Easy", but my sweaty forehead and red face said "Moderate". The trail is mostly packed dirt and a bit rocky, and the trail raises about 300 feet. (Read: a bit steep for toddlers and out of shape Mamas.) The hike into Ponytail falls is 1 mile, and Margot walked the entire way up -

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Along the way is a great viewpoint, which is were we took the river shot posted above. We took plenty of breaks and photos along the way:

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Once we arrived at the Falls, we took a few minutes to have a snack and rest. The descent to the Falls is pretty steep and rocky, so we did carry Margot for this part. There is a bridge that serves as a great viewpoint and you can see the falls crash below on the rocks and logs. Pretty cool stuff! There were several other families who were hiking with their little ones, and that was nice to see. Many people carried their kiddos in backpacks, but Margot did very well walking. She loves to be outside and does well holding our hands. Here are the falls:

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On the way out, Margot's legs were done and she caught a ride.

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The Verdict:

Difficulty (scale of 1-10): 5
Shaded the whole way, so no direct sun beating down on you
Toddler Friendly: 4
Beauty: 7
Fun: 8

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Sara and Jonas said...

It looks like you guys had lots of fun!!!! Kids + Nature/Dirt = Fun for the whole Family:)

Lauren said...

Margot especially loved the big rocks!

She tried to pocket a few on the way, but we managed to distract her!

kalurah said...

I am so jealous!
I wish we had places close to us like that. we'd have to go up to Wallowa Lake for that sort of thing.
not to mention, I probably couldn't get your big brother out there either!
he's deathly allergic to the outdoors (cough, physical activity).

Jason said...

I'll agree with Kalurah that would be great to have someplace like that around here, but I tell you no respect, none did you read that, I categorically deny that I'm deathly allergic to the great outdoors (aka physical activity), I just (hate? nah to strong) don't care for them, err, more the biting bugs and the like that live in the out of doors. That and the first time I took my lovely wife hiking I was totally emasculated when I dropped her in a creek that we were wading through and I just don't think I can handle that type of humiliation again.

Lauren said...

You guys crack me up - I love the simultaneous commenting!

I am only "slightly allergic" to the outdoors now, recently upgraded from "deathly allergic". I will admit, even though I was huffing and puffing and thinking my legs were going to fall off, I did have fun.

It's better to hike with those who love you unconditionally!

Next time you visit we will embark together - How about that?

Trisha said...

What a fun adventure! That is one of the things that Ryan is most looking forward to ~ showing our daughter the great outdoors . . . with me trying to keep up!

carrie said...

Ohhhhh that hike looked so gorgeous, and it looked like you had so much fun! I miss Oregon...

We like taking Millie hiking, too. Outside in the dirt is where she's the happiest! Maybe when it cools down a little here we'll join you on your new-hike-every-week quest. That sounds fun. :)