Summer day at Melakwa Lake
As a parent what makes you beam with pride? Is it when your child chooses an apple over a sucker at Trader Joe's, when they perfectly count to twenty or when they lock eyes and say hello to a homeless person on the street. One of the most endearing qualities of children in my opinion is their openness to the world. When they look around all they see are new friends to me made and fun places to explore. I realize I have said it time and time again, but Jasper has opened a whole new world to me of petting every dog we see to admiring each and every ant that crosses our path. Before kids I thought I loved hiking, but hiking with children is a whole new kind of wonderful. Sure we go slower, he is heavy to carry, our backs and joints hurt more and at times our patient wains with both him and each other, but Jasper's excitement as we reach an alpine lake or giddiness as we play in the refreshing water makes my heart sing.
Last weekend we hiked to Melakwa Lake and spent an afternoon picnicking, wading in the water, throwing rocks, chatting with strangers and watching proudly as Jasper expertly climbed over rocks and roots in the sunshine.
I often don't remember, but I have been trying to ask more strangers to take our photos when we go places. As much time as I spend behind the camera I still want there to be images of me with my family.
Jasper knows one speed and that is go. Watching him get ready to launch himself high into the sky only get three inches off the ground makes me love him even more. Jasper is awesome in his own right and does not need anyone to tell him he is cool. He is rough and tough one moment, then has this sweet, sensitive side which refers to things as "pretty" and "cute" In the same breath he acts like a monster truck smashing and bashing things and then tells me he needs a cuddle. I like to think Jasper is the perfect blend of Cameron and I and I hope that no one tries to tell him he is girly for liking to garden or nerdy for liking to read. My hope for him in the future is he can evolve into the person he needs to me. I hope I can be open minded enough that I can learn and grow from him as much if not more than he learns from me.
Directions: From Seattle, head east on I-90 to exit 47 Denny Creek/Tinkham Road. At the top of the exit ramp, turn left and cross over the freeway. Go 0.2 miles and turn right at the stop sign onto Forest Road 58. The road crosses under the freeway, after driving 0.2 miles, turn left.
Continue straight on for 2.4 miles and take a left just after Denny Creek Campground, passing the Franklin Falls trailhead. The road here is fairly potholed so use caution. While some people may be parked here, continue on, crossing a bridge.
Past the bridge, it's just 0.2 miles to the trailhead, where the parking lot can accommodate about 30 cars.