John Wolff's Blog (29)

Walking Gwynnie around the neighborhood.

The Washington Cascades didn't have a winter in 2014-2015 (warmest Dec. and Feb. on record).  This was February 2015, conditions more like June (no exaggeration).  It's about 6 miles to the little peak at left in this photo, with 4600' of gain.  The first mile was bare trail (usually it would be many feet of snow, and I wouldn't even be able to drive to the trailhead). We'll snowshoe to that little snowy notch (Surprise Gap), then walk left up the ridge crest:…


Added by John Wolff on March 20, 2015 at 12:30am — 12 Comments

Backcountry hiking with corgis -- some things I've learned.

We once quickly returned 2 lost pointers because the owner's cell phone# was on the collars.  Test your microchip when you visit the vet -- Gwynnie's gave no signal!

chillybuddy cooling vest    keep in plastic bag, so you can add water to wet it (crtitical; much of the cooling is evaporative).  They wilt in sun above treeline and this thing really does help.  Size Medium with a Small girth strap.



Added by John Wolff on July 3, 2013 at 1:43pm — 3 Comments

Al's turn to make Buzzfeed

Al makes Buzzfeed

There are others of us in there, too.  Al is there twice; he is also #18.  Snickmom's #15.

Sitting majestically on the top of snowy mountains

Added by John Wolff on June 25, 2013 at 4:30pm — 5 Comments

Happy Birthday Gwynnie, 10 y.o. 4/8/13

She has climbed 7 mountains this year, and we failed on an 8th.  She gets to go more often lately because Al is recuperating from last September's injury.  She's maybe a bit slower than she used to be, but I don't have to wait for her unless it's icy or really steep.  She gets the occasional "corgi toss" past certain obstacles, and seems to like snowshoe hiking.  She…


Added by John Wolff on April 9, 2013 at 12:30am — 17 Comments

We stole another song

with apologies to one of my musical heroes, John Prine  

John Prine, "Dear Abbey"

Dear Abby, Dear Abby, please answer my mail,

My ears are too big, and I don't have a tail,

My legs are so short, I'm just 6 inches…


Added by John Wolff on January 22, 2013 at 12:30pm — 6 Comments

Merry Christmas everybody

Especially at this festive time of year, want is keenly felt, and abundance rejoices.  So we wish continued prosperity to our comfortable friends, and patience while the wheel of fortune turns for those in difficulty.  Health to all of our smaller friends who reliably remind us to watch the doughnut, not the hole.…


Added by John Wolff on December 25, 2012 at 6:00pm — 4 Comments

Carrie Hale's advice re. Al.

Our breeder Carrie Hale (Haley PWC) offered to kennel Al & Gwynn for 5 days, and there's nobody better.  She's a font of information and advice about all things corgi, generous with her time.

We got to meet Dante, Gwynnie's sire, Al's gradsire, and Autumn Rain, and Twyla.  Superb friendly beautiful adorable dogs.  I could've cuddled corgis all night.

We learned that Al is a bit underweight, so his rations get increased,  Most important, she said he's favoring his left rear…


Added by John Wolff on December 4, 2012 at 1:30am — 9 Comments

Glacier Peak Failure, Aug. 2012

Al claims the first failure on Glacier Peak's South Ridge by a Pembroke Welsh corgi without supplemental oxygen.  We could have done it easily had we been willing to walk the glacier unroped -- as many do -- but Al doesn't do glaciers unroped.  As he points out, "Nobody falls into a crevasse that they can see."  So 9200' is his high point.  Al is inspired by Sirowan's Goro,…


Added by John Wolff on September 27, 2012 at 2:30pm — 7 Comments

5 Days' Freedom, Glacier Peak Wilderness.

This is our 5-day Labor Day trip.  Buck Mt. is 8570', not difficult technically, but one of the Washington Cascades' larger peaks, and fairly remote.  It had been a goal for a long time (30…


Added by John Wolff on September 24, 2011 at 6:30am — 7 Comments

Mt. Maude, our masterpiece.

If you click on these photos, you'll get a clearer, higher-resolution view.

Seven-Fingered-Jack (9077') and four-fingered Al.  Our objective, Mt. Maude, is just to the right, and 5' higher.

Al saved this trip right at the start by passing…


Added by John Wolff on August 2, 2011 at 4:00am — 14 Comments

Al passed his PP.T.!

Al doesn't even have his C.D. or C.G.C., but he did me proud Saturday and passed his PP.T.!

I'd been waiting, worrying, and preparing for the Porcupine Test for years.  By passing it, he saved our most notable exploit to date (more on that elsewhere).  I'm told porcupine quills are air-filled, so if you cut them, they become easier to extract.



Added by John Wolff on August 1, 2011 at 3:00am — 9 Comments

Another shameless dog brag

L>R:  Summit Chief, Chimney Rock, Overcoat Peak.  These are the highest peaks in the Snoqualmie Pass area of Washington's central Cascades.  We're on a little peak called Otter Point, 6360':…


Added by John Wolff on July 6, 2011 at 7:30am — 30 Comments

8 Two-Dog Nights in the north Cascades... with only one dog.

Fortunately, a Welsh corgi counts as 2 dogs on a Two-Dog Night because it fits inside your sleeping bag. Ordinarily, I like to sleep with the dogs for companionship and the peaceful vibes that emanate from a snoozing animal. This time, it was for something more primal: body heat. Dummy here brought a goose down sleeping bag on a 9-day backpacking trip in normal…


Added by John Wolff on September 20, 2010 at 2:30am — 9 Comments

Corgi Noir

[Last year, Bunny Butts solicited ideas for an article in the Pem-Welsh Corgi Assoc of Canada magazine.  Sam suggested "crossing the Canadian border with your corgi".  This is the final rewrite of Al's contribution.  He's been reading too much Raymond Chandler.]

Border Corgi

Yes.  Crossing the Canadian border with your…


Added by John Wolff on August 10, 2010 at 2:00am — 5 Comments

Hiker found dead with faithful corgi at his side.

A Seattle solo hiker has found dead after an apparent fall off a cliff or steep slope. His faithful corgi, Ernie, was waiting at his side when searchers found them. The report states he fell while walking in the dark -- I don't see how they could know that, unless he had his headlamp out.

I… Continue

Added by John Wolff on July 1, 2010 at 1:30pm — 11 Comments

Happy Easter, everybody

Easter, schmeaster. We only do this 'cuz we get fed triple. Didn't even find any Easter eggs. Gwynnie found a WHOLE CLIFF BAR in the snow, and our "master" [what a disgusting concept] took it away from her!!!

Beats walkin' the 'hood though...

Added by John Wolff on April 5, 2010 at 12:00am — 2 Comments

Gwynnie and Al have new tails!

Added by John Wolff on April 1, 2010 at 12:30am — 11 Comments

Find the corgi in this picture

We bivouacked on a knife-edge ridge well above 6000', no tent necessary, sky TV all night, a big volcano right behind us.  We had sunset, moonset, and sunrise, all from the same place. But there was something vaguely ominous about that sunset...

Added by John Wolff on December 23, 2009 at 12:30am — 3 Comments

Find the corgi in this picture

Wonderful solstice weekend. Neighborhood party, ran around the lake, walked dogs to coffee shop and all around the neighborhood, called Mom and best friends, bought some brandy, bathed both dogs, and sat around drinking brandy & egg nog, combing the dogs while listening to Patrick Stewart's masterful narration of "A Christmas Carol" [highly recommended]. Whole family: me, Lori, kid home from college, both corgis, and the cat, probably even the… Continue

Added by John Wolff on December 19, 2009 at 10:00pm — 7 Comments

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