We planned a trip to celebrate my 25th birthday. It was supposed to be a three-day weekend trip full of hiking, climbing and hanging out at the campsite. A fun and relaxing getaway from our everyday lives. We left early Friday morning and made it to the refuge around 10 am. I was so excited to be back to the refuge. We visited there last year for my birthday. It has become a birthday tradition of mine.
The first thing we did was set up the campsite and unpack our gear. We had such a pretty site with trees all around us. It was nice. I enjoyed the time we spent hanging out there. Once our site was set up, we hiked up Little Baldy. This has to be my favorite thing to do there. It is the perfect combination of scary and exciting. Although, this time around it was a bit scarier. It had just rained and the rock was slick. Imagine trying to walk up a wet slide, except you have a long way to fall if you slip.
We made it up to the top. The girls found water puddles from the rain. They loved splashing around. The view at the top of Little Baldy is breathtaking. I wish I could have spent more time up there. We made our way down and began hiking around the refuge.
While hiking, it started to rain again. So we made our way back to the campsite. It was cold and wet. We curled up in our sleeping bags for a couple of hours. The girls took a nap while we tried to stay warm and dry off.
It finally stopped raining, we decided to head back out and find something to climb. We followed the guidebook but couldn’t get to the routes. The river was higher than usual and we weren’t able to make our way across. I was bummed since climbing was one of the main activities of this trip. We headed back to the car to find a new trailhead.
By the time we got back to the car, I glanced back at the girls. Now, this is where things get pretty gross. I saw a tick on Lulu’s head. It was just crawling around. I got it off. Then I looked at Spice… She had about 5 ticks on her head. I started to worry. I looked back at Lulu, the ticks kept appearing. I had no idea where they were coming from. It was a tick infestation. We drove back to the campsite. I spent the next half hour inspecting the girls for more ticks. I kept finding them. They still didn’t stop appearing. I found about 20 ticks on both of the dogs.
We decided it would be best if we packed up and went home. I was bummed the trip was shortened. We didn’t get to do as much as I had hoped but it was the best thing we could do for the girls. As soon as we got home, I threw them into the tub and pulled more ticks off of them. I have never seen so many ticks on one dog before. It was gross. I spent that night washing everything from the trip in hopes we didn’t bring any ticks into our home.
Hopefully, we will get another chance to go back soon. Next time, we will steer clear of the river area where the ticks are.