Rain Storm

We were out hiking which is one of Kiska’s favorite activities. As you can see, she is excited about the prospects.

So off we go on the trail.  We are hiking the Richland Balsam Trail, a relatively unknown trail.  It is a simply loop trail that tops out at the peak of Richland Balsam.  Most people do not do the trail because there is no view from the peak itself, but we like it precisely because there are few people there.  As we were nearing the peak, the rain started. A drizzle at first, then slightly larger drops.  Do we turn around and go back?  A debate ensues, but we decide, what the heck, what is a little rain in the summer?

The rain got harder and we kept going.  Just a brief storm, it will stop soon.  Besides we need the rain since we have been in a drought and the wild fires have been bad.

And harder.  Now we are getting wet.  I should also mention that, even in July, the temparture can drop pretty quickly. So while we started a hike in the 70’s, the temps had dropped into the 50’s.  So we were wet and cold.

About 3/4ths of the way on the trail, well after the peak, is a great point where you come out above an overlook on the Blue Ridge Parkway. This overlook on the parkway is popular because it is the highest point on the parkway (i.e., the road at the highest point) and the views are spectacular. Normally, we come out and there are lots of people and many spot us and wonder about the people with the wolves.  (Sibe owners get this all the time). Since so few people know of the trail, they have no idea how we came out on the mountain above them and then disappear again into the woods (should sit up there one day and play Dueling Banjos).  But on this particular rainy day, there were not people there.  Here are pictures to show how wet it was (and, no, I can not explain the two motorcyclists except they were probably as wet and cold as we were).

So, wet and cold, we went back to the Jeep.  Oh yeah, Jeep. Top may be up, but the windows are all out (and stored at home), so now we have to drive down the mountain with the windows out, rain pouring in, and cold wind blowing.  Now I could tell you how miserable I was, but let’s let Kiska explain it, shall we.  Is this a look or what?

That about sums it up.


  1. Lilian on April 28, 2021 at 5:07 pm

    Wow! 14 years ago, a young Kiska, What amazing way back, she really enjoyed hiking and explore

  2. Debbie and Ruby on April 28, 2021 at 9:42 am

    Kiska was always beautiful, even when peeved at Hu-Dad.

  3. HokiePack on April 28, 2021 at 8:31 am

    Love seeing younger Kiska pics and the wet Kiska is priceless! She was not happy with you ?

  4. Jean Burkhardt on April 28, 2021 at 7:24 am

    Hu-Dad-I just LOVE the Way back Wednesdays. Comments form different years and POOR KISKA-all drowned face and all. Even in the summer rain can be very chilling. Beautiful photos!

  5. Diana on December 9, 2015 at 10:04 am

    Just discovered your site and enjoying the stories immensely. I rescued a 2 yr old sibe, Cody 8 yrs ago. I liked your description of the trail because I use one with similar characteristics. It’s the only trail I dare let him go off leash on–also a very unpopular loop trail, no scenic views of anything, never see wildlife bigger than a jay, too short of a loop for the mountain bikers, you have to hike in a rugged 1/3 mile just to get to it which eliminates the small dog people, and lots of down wood off trail which makes Cody keep to the trail very nicely. Want to see a pic of him?…..easy, just go to Wikipedia or google Siberian husky and when you see the blue-eyed grey sibe with Yosemite’s Half Dome in the background, that’s my boy! Thought you might like the little known fact that the most viewed Siberian husky picture on the Internet is a rescue!

    • The Thundering Herd on December 9, 2015 at 9:24 pm

      That is great!

  6. Josh on June 6, 2015 at 5:20 pm

    This reminds me of a time when I went camping with my 4 month old husky. We went on a one week camping trip and 2 nights during the trip it down poured. I had to let (Knubis) my Husky out of the tent a few times during the night to go potty. A couple times he went too far and I had to chase after him. I was only wearing shorts and it was pouring out. Mud was squishing between my feet and I was stepping on pine needles. I finally caught up with him and brought him back to the tent. He loved it–I did not..lol

  7. Flatlander on February 1, 2013 at 2:30 pm

    I drive the Parkway whenever my schedule allows me to visit the mountains. From this day forward I shall make it a point to stop at the Richard Balsam overlook to listen for Dueling Banjos.

  8. tc on March 4, 2011 at 3:35 pm

    Oh, do I know that look! My wife and I call it the “drowned rat” face. Last time I got it was about 3:00 AM in the morning as I tried to clean up ( to no avail, I’ll add) our Sibe named Eva after she’d discovered what happens when you sniff the business end of a skunk! The dog and I were up to our hips in the freezing St. Lawrence river, I’m scrubbing skunk goo out of her face, and the look of despair and misery was pretty similar to Kiska’s here. Enjoying your site, loving the dogs and stories. Bringing back some, ah- memories…

  9. lisa renfrow-betker on October 5, 2010 at 10:33 pm

    I’ve had that feeling on occasion. Beautiful dogs, and pics!

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