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There are few places in America that rival our elegant and precious mountain community when summer is in bloom and folks are out taking it in. One can literally experience a welcomed transformation in body and soul while hiking in our “backyard.” Even a mere stroll around Evergreen Lake can supercharge a typical day. Without doubt, we have “scored.” We do not have to deal with much humidity and shade alone can offset most mountain sun. Our groomed trails come in “all sizes,” welcoming all levels of hikers.

When reflecting on my treasured years in Fort Worth, Texas I can certainly count my blessings twice. Growing up in 100-degree heat (and then some), plus high humidity was a toiling undertaking in itself. Horses were always a part of my life, but riding them was usually an event only done in the evenings. Rodeos were always after 9:00. Hikes, too. The funny thing was, my friends and family always knew me as the “woodland nymph.” I always imagined myself in the woods and begged to see such. My beginning story books had themes centering around the forest or African jungles. Indeed, I am the woodland nymph ‘cause I finally got here.

Besides hiking, I take great pleasure in lazing about in my authentic Yukon teepee. In fact, I often sleep out there, for it is located just down from my house. I would fret about the two known bears who live in my neighborhood, but Juba my dog is always there to protect me. And speaking of teepees, last August I received a birthday gift of a four-man tent that has rain protection. Give me a tent, popcorn, and a source of music and I am practically elevated to heaven.

Saving the best for last, I finally got my sweet, little boat down from Alaska. It cost a lot, but was worth it. I know…I could have sold it up there, but I’m sentimental. Anyway, it’s a four-seater that can handle a trolling engine. The vessel is actually a sailing rig and was originally a means to learn how to sail. Gee, I’m awfully proud of it and can’t wait to launch it at Evergreen. Last year Juba learned boating when we went to several lakes around the mountain area. It was no surprise that he sat quietly, absorbing every stroke of my paddle.

Well, besides sportin’ around in my jeep with the doors off, I guess that’s about it. Oh yeah, I must not forget to mention Evergreen, Conifer, and Bailey events. All these festivals are outstanding and I aim to attend each and every one of them. Look out Summerfest, here I come!

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