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Rocky and raccoons

Before we even started our hike, we found a treasure: a trailhead bathroom that was open! Our treasure stank so loud that it could blow your brains out, but letting Mom use a people bathroom again was like a breath of fresh air after so many locked doors over the past few months. When we came out, Mom (who doesn’t know how to appreciate an epic stank when she smells one) took a big gulp of fresh air, and then we kept walking. Before the trail pinched down to hiking size, I found a post with a bottle on top of it. “What is it?” I sniffed. It smelled like poison.



kicks your tail, but a different trail that climbs just as high in just as far might be much more mellow. This trail was gentle with us, and before long it did what Mom loves best about the far side of the Sierras: the trees opened wide and all around us we could see the bare mountains pushing up against the sky. With the trees gone, Mom’s eyes liked to climb up all the rocks on the tallest mountains and see if they could find a route to the tippity-top. Since Mom’s eyes are the only part of her that isn’t afraid of heights, that’s probably the only way that she’ll climb most of them.


save her socks. But here at the big river, there were no hopping rocks and the water looked deep enough to have a mind of its own. I followed Mom as she walked up and down the bank looking for a place to outsmart the river. After a few minutes’ exploring and careful hopping, we found ourselves at a spot where the river roared so ferociously that it sprayed through the rocks in a white gush. “What now?” I asked. “We get wet,” Mom sighed, sitting down on a rock to take off her socks. “RAWR!” said the river.






Oscar the Pooch


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