Wednesday, November 2, 2016

the ouachitas

a couple of weeks ago, T and i trekked out with m+j to the ouachitas for a little rest and relaxation in the wilderness. the four of us had been talking about taking a trip, but couldn't decide on a set location. that is, until jana's grandfather recommended talihina to us. it was a bit of a drive, but we decided to take the old state highways to add to the journey...i was floored at how stunning the views were.

[hey solo]

T and michael already had an idea of the area we'd be camping in, but we were all gobsmacked when we found our site in person. it was nestled right in the ridge of the mountain with beautiful peeks of the other mountains nearby. it was an easy favorite of the dogs' too...they were in tree-marking heaven. 

[boba supervising T and michael chopping wood]

[solo and bruce watching]

once we had lunch, and prepped the campsite, we took an afternoon hike on the ouachita trail. we didn't have enough sunlight to reach the creek, but made our way from the base of the trail to the tip of the ridge. it was wild to be able to hear how high we were as the base was quiet and still - the trees were so dense, the wind couldn't get through. but, as we got higher, we could see the sky, see peeks of the surrounding ridges, and feel the coolest breeze whip around us. 

[falling for these colors]

[a couple of happy hiking pups]

[trail sculpture made by passing hikers - we left a rock on top before we left]

[tent views]

[too tired to keep his eyes open]

once we made our way back to the campsite post-hike, we got started on making dinner and getting the fire going. meanwhile, the dogs napped before dinner as they were plum tuckered out from all the fun. 

[jana's hike bouquet]

[(camp) home, sweet (camp) home]

we watched the sun set over our campsite, sipped on cocktails, and kept warm by the fire. it was the epitome of a fall night with the cool breeze coming through, the warmth of the fire at our toes, crickets chirping happily in the background, and a full moon rising above us. i went to bed, completely contented and at ease...exactly what i had been looking for :)

[morning watch]

the next morning, we were greeted with a very cool, overcast morning. it was perfect timing too as we were all talking about how the best camp moment is being warmed up with a cup of camp coffee (or tea, if you're like me) in the morning. if you haven't experienced it, i will say it is some kind of wonderful. 

[hers and his]

[breakfast bowls - hashbrowns, sausage, eggs, cheese, salsa and seasonings]

[michael the monkey]

once the pups had their breakfast, they were ready to play and roam around once again. i really do love how much our dogs love each other. 

we then packed up, and headed home - feeling completely relaxed and recharged. we've already begun planning for another trip out to the area next year!

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