You might have noticed that the frequency of my blog posts as grown longer. That can only mean that I must be spending more time in the field. And I am! As the days grow longer and the weather grows better (mostly) I spend an inordinate amount of time on the trail scrambling to complete hikes for my three current book projects, hikeoftheweek.com, and various magazine articles. Its hard to post when deep in the woods--and I do go offline (gasp in this day and age) for periods of time. And you know something-it is kind of liberating! Anyhow, I will try to keep up with informing you on my projects as well as on current environmental and trail issues. I do post more frequently on Facebook and I invite you to "like me" if you don't already. Kind of sounds middle schoolish doesn't it? Do you like me? Aw shucks! Anyhow, I have just returned from eight excellent days (kind of like a hiking Hanukkah receiving gifts of nature each day) of research (my tax status term for hiking) in the Columbia Gorge. Among the things that you absolutely have to know right now is that the flowers are superb-especially in the gorge's eastern reaches. So, get out there now-and especially to Catherine Creek located between Bingen and Lyle, WA. One of my favorite blooms, the Bitterroot is now in full blossom there. Its bittersweet-savor it!