Wednesday, March 21, 2018

World Forest Day and a Newfie Boil Up

This is International Day of Forests; and although I've always liked forests, since moving home (where there's more forest than city or town), I have fallen deeply in love with forests. Being surrounded by nature always rejuvenates me. The Japanese call this "Forest Bathing" (shinrin-yoku); the Norwegians call it "Free Air Life" (Friluftsliv); I call it a magical gift from God.  So, as promised, today I'll share with you a little more of my "craic" weekend and take you into the forest with me. 

On Monday, I went snowshoeing for my first official snowshoe AND my first official winter "boil up".

A hiking group buddy and I headed off into the forest just beside her house. In any other season, you wouldn't be able to venture there because it's mostly bog. But this time of year, there's a great snowmobile trail that's very well used. We treked for almost an hour on the trail, stopping often for breathers and just to enjoy the beauty around us. It wasn't a sunny day, but it was clear and relatively mild -- a perfect day for a hike!

Cindy pointed out the steep uphill and downhill path that some snowmobilers take, following the electrical lines. 

Not for these old knees!

We passed over 2 bogs, went round a pond and then crossed our last bog to head into a spot where trees had been cleared a little; a perfect spot for a fire as we had ready made stools in place!

Cindy came prepared with lint-stuffed toilet paper rolls, newspaper and kindling to start the fire. We gathered some deadfall, stomped out a flat surface in the snow, put down a sheet of foil and began our construction. After lighting the starters, we topped the fire with some 'blasty boughs' (blasty - Of the branch(es) of a spruce or fir, dead and dry but with the needles, now red or brown, still adhering; esp in comb blasty bough, blassy: such a branch which, used as kindling, burns with a quick, fierce, crackling flame.) 

I got Cindy's camp kettle out of my knapsack, filled it with snow (several times), and we had a royal boil up! 

 We dined on roast beef sarnies, chocolate chip 'n' mint cookies and had cup after cup of the most delicious tea I can ever remember having. It was so tasty! 

After sitting and soaking in the outdoor "hygge" for about an hour, we packed up our stuff, covered the remains of our fire with snow, and put our snowshoes back on, filled with such a feeling of well being and contentment.

No Cindy's were
harmed in the making
of this picture!
The return trip was easy because the uphills were now all downhills. Alas! Cindy's snowshoe didn't quite make it over this fallen tree. And as the snow is a great insulator, I didn't hear a thud as she hit the ground. I heard her laughing, and when I turned around, this is what I saw. 

Now honestly! If she hadn't been laughing, I would have helped her up BEFORE I snapped the picture. Honestly! 

It was an amazing adventure and one I hope to do again before the snow melts.


beate grigutsch said...

you girls are right after my taste!!
i totally love a hike or a ski tour in the snowy forests! and a picnic on a little crackling fire is the cherry on the cake!
sadly we had not enough snow for the last 3 years - and open fires are not legal here - for the better of the woods because to many people for to small forests.....
but we use a biwak stove - to make "glühwein" :-)

Sandy aka Doris the Great said...

Yum Beate! I love "glühwein". Thank you for sharing your love of the forest.

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

Wow! I only wish I had half the energy you have ! How wonderful it must have been for you ! I loved seeing the pictures. My knees have learned not to do hills at all. More snow came our way yesterday, but I'm hoping this is the last of it.

Jeanie said...

The Forest Day sounds nice. Hiking in snow, not so nice. I love a good fire, but I think I'd rather have it on a warm beach or a fireplace! Still, looks like great camaraderie and that counts for a lot!

Kay G. said...

I am glad that no Cindy's were harmed in the making of that picture!! HA!

What a great account of a fun time, you are so funny!

sabine ingerl said...

What a great idea to have a picnic in the snow. We have no special name for it, but we also love to be in the forest which is only 50 m away from our home. It is a good place to walk, to rest and to clear the mind.
Sabine xxx