Stop the river right here--this moment in time, when the boys are not too big or too little to go on a fun hike with their mother. This spot in the fast-moving river of time is--knock on wood--perfect. Today, hiking the 4 T Hike with my three boys, was like one of those mother moments that normally exist only in the ethereal cloud of wishes that seems to always be just out of reach of every parent. If there was complaining, I'm choosing to ignore it. I will remember only the friendly banter between the boys, the laughing, the running, the counting of banana slugs, and more than anything, the "thank you mom's."
Our morning started at 8:30 am at the zoo. We hiked across Hwy 26 to the Markham trail and headed up to Council Crest. It was still a little hazy when we got up there but most importantly, it was cool and lovely, which is so much better than hot and miserable.
A few of us ate our Cliff energy bars, even though we weren't even half way through with the first T of the 4T hike: the 4 mile "trail." I would have taken more picture of the boys on the trail, but they hiked at a pretty fast pace and I didn't want to make them stop. (And I'm choosing to not remember the moss covered bench photo that never happened because one child refused to cooperate unless he could sit in the middle.)
The second T is "tram." We climbed the hill to OHSU and made our way to the tram (free on the downhill ride). The kids were blown away by the height and the view.
Regardless of their falling best-case-scenario discussion, the boys rode right up in front and watched our entire descent.
We got off the tram and onto the third T, the "trolley." In real life, this people mover is actually called a "street car," but that doesn't fit with the theme, so we called it the trolley. Can I tell you how great it felt to sit down after that 4 mile hike? It was delightful. Isaac was the only kid would would admit to feeling tired and thankful to be off his feet.
These signs kept us on track for our entire hike, except for once, when we took a wrong turn and had to backtrack. After getting back to the point where we took the wrong turn, we noticed that the trail marker had fallen over and was laying in the ferns and ivy.
The fourth and final T was "train." Here, you can see the MAX train coming up the street for our ride back to the zoo. Yay! The tickets we purchased on the trolley ($1.50 for kids and $2 for adults) were good for two hours, so we were ready to jump on the train as soon as it came.
This wasn't the best picture of the boys, but the look on Isaac's face reminded me of the McKayla Maroney is not Impressed meme. (Isaac is not impressed with the lack of pierced, tattooed, stinky he-shes on the MAX train.)
We finished our 4 T hike with a fifth T, "treat." This is where I gathered up the sixth T, "thank you's." It was mostly thanks for buying lunch at Dairy Queen, but I like to think there was thanks for the fun Portland adventure we shared too.