After a long and restful sleep, we’re up and feeling ready to tackle our new environment.

Our morning chores consist of making breakfast and washing dishes. We decide that doing dishes only once a day will make it easier and save time. We get ourselves cleaned up and do a little more cleaning of the cabin so that we can utilize every available space for storage.

Several times a day we take two 5-gallon buckets down to the river and fill them to a weight that we can carry back up the rock to the cabin.

Gini’s turn to haul water. We each must have done this at least twice a day.

To get up and down from the cabin, we have to walk to the side of the boulder where the cabin sits, and climb down a fairly steep trail to the riverside. Going down is a breeze, coming up with filled buckets of water is not so easy. In the cabin is a filtering bag and we refill this daily, sometimes twice. We also boil water to wash and rinse with in a very large enameled pot at least once a day.

The path up which doesn’t look like much but this is just the trail part. At the end, turn left and climb a rock. That’s with 2 buckets of water. The only way I could do it was to put one bucket down, climb up with one and then go back and get the second bucket.

We are amazed to see numerous river rafters float by throughout the day. From our perch above the river, we often look down and wave as the rafters float by. One yells up to us, asking how we got to stay here at Granite Cabin. Gini yells back that it’s the Artist-Wilderness-Connection program through the Hockaday Museum. As the rafter floats down the river, the last thing we hear him say is “Someday I’m going to do that!” That brings a smile to our faces.

One of the many rafters floating by and waving a greeting.

Chores done, we head out to the “meadow” (the area where Matt and the horse were waiting for us yesterday) or as Gini has nicknamed it “Our Quiet Place” where it is cooler. It is quite windy today and this area is fairly well sheltered from the gusts. The shaded area is also a welcome relief from the hot sun.

Our Quiet Place—peaceful haven, wind break, shade from the sun, painting location, sleeping spot (which you’ll read about later), and just a wonderful place to hang out!

We write in our journals and think about our artistic strategy for the next 9 days. One of the great aspects of this is that we don’t have a schedule or itinerary—we don’t have the pressure to complete anything so we decide to keep it loose and approach it on a day-to-day basis.

Writing in my journal in Our Quiet Place with my box of art supplies.

Some of the things I would like to try are:
Nocturnals/Twilight Paintings
Value Studies (one color drawings)
Poetic Color Harmonies
A scene that I paint multiple times from more detailed to less detailed.
Trails in honor the 50 Anniversary of the National Trail Systems Act in 1968.
River views in honor of the 50th Anniversary of the Wild & Scenic Rivers Act (Double anniversaries— how about that!)
Rocks at waters edge & underwater.
Trees in the forest.

Journal page with a list of the different possibilities that I’d like to tackle during our stay. A quick little watercolor of the aspen trees.

Stay tuned for the next installment to come…