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April Fool’s Adventures

Updated: Apr 1

Travels with Heart, By Annie Bowler, Vol 13 April 1, 2024


We haven’t traveled far this month but apparently, you don’t need to go far for some real

adventures! It seems apt that this is posting April 1st. When you read about them, you may consider that we're a bit foolish!


Hasn't this spring had some crazy weather? Recently, when John and I left our house for a walk, it was overcast and cool; the forecast was for a minute amount of rain, so we weren’t concerned when it began to sprinkle. Before long, John headed for home as he’d already walked a lot but I, who had had a mostly sedentary day, decided to keep walking.


About 10 minutes later, the rain hit hard. I was out on trails about 2 miles from home so there was nothing to do but walk fast toward the closest shelter. By the time I found cover, it was pouring, and both Buster and I were drenched. Soon it begun to thunder and lightning. John, who was caught in the same deluge, finally made it home just as it started to thunder. The first thing this sweet guy did was call to see how I was fairing, and though he was pretty well soaked, he jumped in a car and came to pick me and Buster up. By the time John arrived, huge lightning cracked, and it was hailing hard.


After all of that, a hot shower and dry clothes sure felt good! Home, sweet home! 









We were up at at our cabin a few weeks ago when John and I unknowingly spent the night with a Bobcat. Our cabin is at Donner Summit which gets a huge amount of snow.

Our place has an odd layout; there are 2 small bedrooms over the garage, then a long, enclosed snow tunnel which leads to the front door of the main cabin. The snow tunnel is the only way to get to the main house during the winter season.



John was in the cabin’s garage in the early morning when he heard some noises coming from the bedrooms over the garage. He headed up the stairs to investigate and made eye contact with a bobcat who was staring down at him. John quickly backed down the stairs.

He opened the main door to the driveway but closed the door to the garage, hoping to give our guest an easy escape route.


We were preparing to head down the hill, but we needed to be certain the bobcat was

gone before we left. We wondered, what is the safest way to approach a wild animal in

a small space? John was the brave one; he went back up the stairs armed with a large

blanket and a broom. He thought he heard noises in the back bedroom and carefully went to investigate. Meanwhile, I was waiting on the driveway armed with a snow shovel and a camera, hoping to snap a photo of our houseguest. After a thorough investigation, John determined the bobcat was gone. Small paw prints on our driveway that confirmed that notion.



This early morning adventure certainly got our blood pumping and honestly, I didn’t sleep

well that night as I kept replaying my friend Susan Whittington’s very apt question, “How

did the bobcat get in?”


Here's the answer to Susan's question......

Things get pretty beaten up at Donner Summit and Serene Lakes because of the

strong winds and huge snow fall. The door into our garage has suffered its share of

damage from hard weather. Last summer you could barely open that door because it was too tight. Someone came to work on it but this winter, it’s become so loose, the door now won’t staying latched unless it’s deadbolted.


There were cold, heavy winds the afternoon before our bobcat incident. When John and I discovered returned from a walk, we discovered the garage door had been blown wide open. We agreed to dead bolt the door every time we went in or out but with that's probably when the bobcat decided our house looked like a cozy spot.


The creepy part, I realized about 2 am the following night, is that we walked through the garage and possibly right past the bobcat at least four times going to and from our cabin later that afternoon. Maybe I’m foolish, but you don’t normally consider that a wild animal might be in your house or garage when you’re just walking through. We will never know where that bobcat was as we innocently walked through the garage. 


When I went to our cabin again this last week, I went upstairs to check out the space. My

faithful dog Buster was, of course, with me. Buster did a double take on the lower bunkbed, sniffing and sniffing the bed excitedly. A few little, short brown hairs were on the bed. This may well be where our house guest enjoyed its night stay.



It’s not easy to have a cabin so high up in the mountains but these photos demonstrate

why it is worth it!




Luckily, not all of March was filled with drama; a highlight for me has been the steady unfolding of spring, which always surprises me in its beauty. I try to hike a number of miles every day and during spring, these hikes bring me great joy. Here's a few of the images I’ve captured on my travels.


I hope you are enjoy your spring as well!




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Guest
Apr 01

Wow! A beautiful Bobcat adventure! Jim and Imi Hirschinger

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