Friday, December 27, 2013

Wandering In Wintery Mackay - Part 2

After leaving the Ranger Station dedicated to Salmon-Challis State Forest, LC drove the mile back to the center of Mackay and parked the truck on a little side street.
While LC headed towards the bank I grabbed for Kory's leash and encouraged her out of the truck.
We would wander a little ways and see what we would see.
Looking up at a Christmas decorated street light I reached into the pocket of my winter coat and made a grab for my camera.
Raising my camera I was just about to take a shot of the decorations when Kory unexpectedly yanked on her leash.
I was pulled forward and momentarily off-balance, and my camera promptly fell out of my hand and down into the snow bank by my feet.
Sighing in mild frustration I held tighter to Kory's leash as I bent down to pick it up.
Wiping off my non-waterproof camera I looked through the camera viewer wondering if it was dry enough to try and take pictures.
Maybe........... it wasn't and these first few pictures prove my point.
I didn't realize it at the time, and as me and my dog began to wander along the side walk close to where we had parked, I looked for interesting things to photograph.
Mackay is a lovely and friendly little town.
People are relaxed (even at this busy time of year) and they smiled as I walked by them.
Christmas music was being piped outside from the lone grocery store in town.
When I heard the music I smiled inwardly.
I could take relaxed and smiling and mountains and sunshine and a quiet walk on the day before Christmas.........

There is one grocery store, a couple of gas stations, a beer slash bait slash ammo store, a couple of banks and hair salons and restaurants and other assorted small businesses that cater to a population of 517 people.
The closest town to Mackay is Arco a little over 20 miles to the south.
Challis is another 30 miles or so north, and further into the Big Lost River Valley.
This truly is one of those beautiful little mountain-surrounded communities that started life as a copper mining town and eventually morphed into a small, farming and retirement town.
Some blurry pictures of down town Mackay while waiting for LC to catch up with us..............
This was only the second time that I had walked in a town with Kory.
The first was while we were killing time waiting for LC to see a doctor about his injured back in Blackfoot.
She responds well to the sounds and sights and bustle of town, even though she spends so much time living in the quietness of rural Idaho.
As we walked, Kory looked in all directions, trying to process everything that was going on around her.
A few cars, a few people, Christmas music, endless doorways to closely inspect.
Constantly looking in first one direction than another, my new pup was enthralled with everything going on around her............
By the time we found this snow man my camera had apparently dried out and was again taking clear pictures.
As Kory and I slowly wandered down one street and then crossed over to head back the way we had come, I looked around me.
Old fashioned store fronts.  Christmas decorations outside stores and Christmas music playing in front of stores.  Snow covered 360 degree mountains.
A beautiful little town.
I'm not sure why it took me a while to warm up to Mackay, but I love this little place very much...........
I looked over at the bank, and with LC still not in sight turned and walked across the road and headed towards a park that I had noticed on a previous trip to this town.
Away from the buildings in town the wind suddenly began to strongly gust.
Cold coming off the snow covered mountains.
We had always just driven past this park, and even though it was suddenly very cold I was pleased to be there, and eagerly walked over to the information board to see what I could learn............
I was at an ATV off-load park, and it contained maps showing directions of trails, and also contained drinkable water, restrooms, places to park trailers and trucks.
A huge wide-open space at the edge of town where 4-wheelers could gear up in preparation for motorized adventures in the mountains............
As Kory wandered to the full length of her leash I smiled at her and absently watched as she walked in a centrifugal-force-driven semi circle.
I liked this dog very much.  
She makes me smile.
As we both wandered to the far end of the park I looked down and realized that the snow was deeper than I had realized.
I was shin deep in snow but was wearing insulated and water proof boots.
My feet were dry and warm and I contentedly walked in shin deep snow with my dog, who has found out in the past almost-two months (since we picked her up at the airport in Boise) that she loves snow as well.
Kory saw him before I saw him.
I turned and realized that my Mountain Boy was heading towards us.
I stood at the edge of the far end of the dirt and snow covered parking lot, watching him smiling at me and walking towards me.
We wandered only a little while.
The wind was getting stronger and blowing straight off the mountains.
Soon it was freezing cold.
Time to slowly make our way back to the truck.
A beautiful, old painted sign found on the outside of a building close to the grocery store where we were parked.............

I hope that everyone had a wonderful Christmas.............

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