Tag Archives: northwest

Bogachiel River Romp – also Waterproof Sox

Harpo and I first hiked the Bogachiel River trail when we were starting to train for the Appalachian Trail hike in 2013. It was as wet as we remembered. And although it’s hard to romp hip deep in icy water, we did our best. The trail was muddy, wet and due to recent storms there were numerous blowdowns – but it provided a welcome (if not wet) few hours of hiking.

We got to test some new gear – NRS Hydroskin .5 neoprene socks. These actually worked great when paired with wool liners – tho to say they are ‘waterproof’ is a misnomer. Neoprene works by allowing the body to heat a small area of water close to the body – so like using a wetsuit, you’re wet but warm.

I tried the neoprene socks alone, wool socks alone, and the wool/neoprene combo. The wool/neoprene combo was definitely the warmest, allowing for a quick reheat every time our feet were drenched again. Both Harpo and I remarked we’de like try the neoprene socks if we hiked the AT again, especially towards the end of the season. I used lightweight DarnTough no show socks as liners the first day, and DarnTough hiker crew socks the second day – my only complaint is the wool socks retain too much water, causing the feet to feel super heavy. I’m excited to try the combo with thin REI wool liners, as well as experimenting with poly liners. These beat a bread bag for sure! Tho considering carrying the weight just for those times when your feet are wet all day is tough….

Farm to Table

Harpo and i have been fortunate for the last couple of months running into work-for-stay opportunities where almost all of the food consumed is grown on the property. Out at MAHA Farm & Forest in Whidbey Island, we also get to check out the local farmer’s market scene. MAHA works the South Whidbey TILTH market, which is one of many small farmers markets that pop up around the island during spring and summer. It’s a pleasure to see people so exited about food grown by small local producers – to get exited about food at all, especially pesticide-free, non GMO crops that are grown a resonate driving distance from where they are consumed. And it encourages MAHA and other small producers to keep up the good fight through the community support and money they garner at these events…
It’s cluing us into another way of living. One that was always below the surface during our time in the city. Better food, less stress, and communities that feed and support their members. It’s something Harpo and I have worked towards through secret cafes and giving and sharing food and celebrating our lives together. But it’s interesting too move ever closer to the source…

Work for Stay



Harpo and I have been staying out on Maha Farm on Whidbey Island getting a taste of the country life before we leave for our PCT hike. We’re doing some chick rangling, scenic painting, organic gardening and eating directly farm-to-table. It’s a great to harvest the food you eat, and nobody seems to mind that we only cook weird vegan food.

By working directly for room and board, without currency in exchange for labor, we’re able to realize the actual value of our labor. It’s a more direct way of living, without the complexities and abstraction of currency.
Work-for-Stay arrangements raise questions about how to exist alongside this system of bait and switch capital markets, the association of products with emotions, and the consumer consciousness of the American identity.

Can we live more simply? I guess that’s the intent of this experiment…