I went on a hike with Melissa up to Indian River Falls today. I didn’t feel too well for part of it, but we were able to make it up and back in about 5 hours. I wore the vibram fivefingers shoes I bought earlier this year. They wore pretty well, but in hindsight, it might have been good if I had carried a pair of sandals to put on. The 9-10 mile round trip was much longer than I have previously gone in these shoes. My longest previous trip was mostly spent off trail on more forgiving ground, also. My feet and lower legs were sore by the end of day, but not incapacitatingly so, especially after I waded a little bit in the cold water of the river.
Weather: Overcast with light rain throughout the day. Wind did not seem to be strong, but there was at least a little bit of a breeze.
Birds: I noticed Swainson’s Thrushes, Hermit Thrushes, Varied Thrushes, Robins, Pacific-slope Flycatchers, Wilson’s Warblers, Red-breasted Sapsuckers, Winter Wrens, American Dippers, and Townsend’s Warblers along the way (probably more than that, but I don’t remember for sure). The Wilson’s Warblers seemed to favor the salmonberry thickets that occur sometimes where there are openings in the old growth canopy.
Flora: The Twayblade orchids were blooming along the trail not too far from the falls. I also saw Mountain Sorrel, Sitka Mist-maiden, and Ground Dogwood blooming, among other things.