Book Club Recap: Apr 2016

Deception Pass Headlands: 5.0 miles // 350 feet elevation gain

I was surprised to find our biggest group yet on a cold and rainy Sunday. A few of us camped overnight at Bowman Bay and the others reported driving through heavy rain to meet us. But the group was armed with rain jackets and pack covers and even an umbrella. We headed up the trail.

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I chose Deception Pass for this month’s hike because of its accessibility, easy wandering trails and spring wildflowers. But more than that, these places where land meets water are quite special. Often there is more wildlife to be seen and the air is so refreshing. I also chose it because it was the closest we could get to the scenery Jennifer Hahn experienced on her journey through the inside passage, recounted in this month’s book choice, Spirited Waters.

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First we headed to Rosario Head protected overhead from the rain by the canopy of cedar and madrona trees. We stopped to admire the wooden carved statue of the Maiden of Deception Pass. Her story is told in placards circling the statue and each side depicts her transformation into a sea woman with barnacles and seaweed hair.

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From there we continued to Rosario Head where the meadows sprawled into the sea. Purple camas sprinkled the grass and the wind whipped up around us. We watched the white caps of a dominant current out in the water and I thought of Hahn in her kayak crossing open waters in stormy weather. I am in awe of her solo journey through the Inside Passage, I certainly would not have the courage.

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As we completed the loop around Rosario Head we were back in the protection of the trees. Returning to Bowman Bay, we spotted some seals poking their curious heads out of the water. We continued past the parking lot and headed for Lighthouse Point. The tide was up but lowering, so we walked across the slippery rocks and barnacles to meet the trail.

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Once off the beach, the trail enters a beautiful thick forest. In a few spots the trees open up to allow views of the water and the Deception Pass Bridge. We stopped to watch unidentified wildlife splashing away along the shoreline. At the point, the views open up and the entire span of the bridge can finally be seen. Bracing ourselves against the wind, we explored the headlands.

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Once we’d had enough we headed back toward the trailhead. Now the rain was becoming steady again and we had no trees to thank for cover. We took to the old CCC built picnic shelter and had our lunch and book discussion. We all seemed to agree that Jennifer Hahn has a great sense of voice and that her story is an inspiring one. I especially loved her constant battle with herself that she writes in back and forth dialogue with herself. I recognized this behavior in myself of course.

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Even though it was a cold and rainy day, I left the trail with happiness and warmth from our little group. It was a boost that I needed to get through the month and excitement to see what our next adventure will be.

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Nutella Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe:

1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg + 1 egg yolk
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup Nutella
2 1/3 cup all purpose flour
1 1/4 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cornstarch
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

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  1. Preheat oven to 350F
  2. In a large bowl, beat butter for 1 minute until creamy. Add sugar and brown sugar and beat on medium high until light and fluffy.
  3. Beat in egg, egg yolk and vanilla. Add 1/4 cup Nutella and beat until combined.
  4. In a separate bowl, combine flour, cornstarch, baking soda and salt together.
  5. Mix in wet ingredients until combined. Add 1 cup chocolate chips.
  6. Add remaining Nutella and beat for 5-10 seconds until Nutella is just streaked through the dough.
  7. Scoop and roll dough in to 1 Tbsp balls and place on lined baking sheet.
  8. Bake for 10 minutes until golden brown.

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We had some great bloggers with us on the trail today. Check them out here:

Pacific Northwest Seasons

A Day Without Rain

Happiest Outdoors

Didn’t make it to the meetup but read the book? I would love to hear your thoughts on Spirited Waters in the comments below!

2 Comment

  1. I found Hahn’s writing incredibly visual, and often found myself setting down the book to search for photos of the places she was describing. While searching for Butedale Falls, I found an article about Susan Conrad, another female solo-kayaker, whose book about her experience kayaking the Inside Passage will be published soon. After reading Spirited Waters, I’m looking forward to reading another account of this incredible journey. If you’re interested, this is the article I found: http://www.adventuresnw.com/paddling-the-inside-passage-a-journey-of-the-sea-and-soul/

  2. Thanks so much for organizing this and your great write-ups! Really enjoyed the hike, and the book (ha although I read it many years ago). Hope to make next time.

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