Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Courtright Reservoir

The other great thing about this place was that it's right next to a large reservoir. We went there after lunch on Saturday to swim and kayak. 


There were pink and orange wildflowers everywhere. Chloe loved them! 

The water was rather chilly! 

 Tons of rocks everywhere! 

The kids all took turns kayaking. I went out with Dave, Levi and Chloe. I don't remember the last time I've done that, and Dave had to give me some pointers about paddling. We all went over to an island in the middle and climbed all around it.

Not a sandy beach, but it was still super relaxing. 

 Lots of rocks for skipping!

Dave and the boys were surprised how many people were there (apparently it was practically empty when they were there 2 years ago). We found out the next day at church that it was one of two/year fish-without-a-permit days in California. That explained it!

 Lots of flowers, rocks, and trees.

After we loaded up the car, we drove over the dam. It was really cool! We want to hike around there sometime. PG&E gets electricity by opening up the dam and letting the water flow down to Wishon. Then it uses the stored electricity to pump the water back up. It seems silly, but it allows them to get extra electricity during times when there is a higher than usual demand for power throughout the state. We met a guy at church who oversees the whole operation, and he was telling us all about it. 

We also drove to the area where they started their 50 miler a couple years ago. That was nostalgic for them. 

On Monday after we packed up camp, we walked down to the lake. It was a pretty hike, not too far.

Enjoying our 4th of July!

We weren't planning on going swimming, but somehow they all got in, regular clothes and all. They said it wasn't cold, but I didn't believe them. 

 It was windy, and the water was choppy. We chose the better day for kayaking.

 Silly kids!                                                      Chloe was smart and didn't get in the water this time.

Someone thought to pack the slingshot.  


On the way back we counted how many different kinds of wildflowers we could find. I think we got over 20.  

We ate lunch and relaxed when we got back to the campsite.  The boys found an awesome long, steep hill to ride their bikes on, and they did that for awhile. We didn't want to leave, but we had to get back at a decent time. On the way home we stopped at a pizza buffet in Fresno. After leaving the peaceful tranquility of the mountains, the loud, pushy buffet crowds almost gave me a panic attack! Then we watched fireworks in the distance while passing several towns on our way home. It was a really fun July 4th weekend, and I just reserved another trip to the same campground!

Monday, August 15, 2016

Rock climbing at Courtright

Our campsite was a short walk away from awesome rock climbing. We spent the first morning there.

Dave and Spencer set up 2 ropes at the top while the rest of the climbers got shoes and harnesses on.

Love those socks, Levi!

Levi and Chloe don't rock climb per se, but they loved climbing all around the rocks.

Chloe spent most of the time collecting cool rocks.

Repelling down, after setting up the climbs.

Repelling shots are always fun!

Dallin got to the top of the really hard one! Not everyone did.

I love this picture of Dave!

High five! Dave's going up - Dallin's going down.

This was Tyler's first time belaying with the family! I think he did it a little bit when he earned his rock climbing merit badge. So now we have 3 belayers, and that really speeds things up. Everyone got to do both climbs.

 What a stretch! 

Brennan was frustrated with himself for not getting to the top of one of the climbs, but it was hard!

This part was tricky.

 Spencer, enjoying the lovely view from the top!

I didn't get any pictures of Tyler rock climbing - I think he did it while I was taking a quick trip back to camp with the little kids. That was a nice thing about being so close. It's hard for some of us to stay in one place that long.

Heading back down to camp. What a fun morning!