August 4, 2014


Lots of signs in Idaho...the kind you don't see so much of in my neck of the woods.
Residents of the next town over were a little less temperamental...
...while those even further up the mountain tried a completely different approach.
This poor guy wasn't sure how he felt.
 Even the state government has a sense of humor. Can you imagine the guy who has to tell his cell mates that he's serving time 'cause he harassed the fish?
Then, there was this.
Some of the most compelling signs had nothing to do with words.

Some signs required interpretation. We found several sets of tracks at the secluded alpine lake that I lured Himself to hike to with me, largely by dropping my voice two octaves and mumbling when I came to the word "alpine" in the hike description. (Alpine involves a mountain which therefore necessitates an uphill climb.I'm such a bitch.) The nice Ranger confirmed our guess about this one.
Most definitely wolf. (Yes, I know they look like raccoon but they are about the size of half of my foot.) You get to that, she explained, by recognizing the dog pads, but with claws. We knew this next set were feline and she concurred.
 Mountain lion. By now, I began to fantasize about my new career in animal tracking. And so I spent days on the internet trying to figure out this one.
Large mammal with three toes. Probably hooved. Clearly not extinct and, because of the gait pattern, unlikely to be Sasquatch. I couldn't find anything on the web. I poured over the books of tracks in every Ranger Station gift shop. Finally, I showed it to Nice Ranger Lady and she knew immediately.

Do you? 

Okay, scroll down.

And if you said "one elk following another," you are right.


  1. White tailed deer will make the same kind of track.

  2. those are totally COOOL shoes!...and did you do any tent camping?????
    OH i love all these and want MORE

    1. The shoes are the BEST...they are from Keen and have the sole (and soul) of hiking boots without all the weight PLUS they dry in about 20 minutes, which was very handy for the three creeks we had to ford to get to the lake. No tent camping because 1)we don't have all that gear anymore and I'm not interested in accumulating it and 2)Himself needs AC at night or his personality deteriorates rapidly. Next post will be about the ghost towns and then we return to fabric...

  3. Keen you say, must google those

    Julie, I LOVE your blog, I laugh (and learn) so much; I sincerely hope you will share all the 400 plus photo's with us the readers plus a your immensely witty stories