Piñon Magic in the Clouds

     This past week has been pretty crazy weather wise for southern california. It rained non stop for 5 days which is quite rare for a place that sees sun 95% of the year. We sure do need it though! I always welcome weather like this as cold, wet weather is when magic happens. I can only say that this kind of weather creates the most surreal, mysterious and magical environment. I love that you can be hiking in the desert amongst cactus and yucca plants and see snow on the ground and clouds rolling by you just feet away. It was like we were walking through clouds all day. I tried to capture it as best as I could but nothing beats seeing it in person. 

   On the 1st day of my 30th year on this planet, I sought refuge among the trees. No matter what happens, being out in the desert grounds me like no other place. I spent the day hiking into the otherworldly clouds, almost reaching out and touching them then realizing I was already enveloped inside of their misty grasp. Just when we thought we would have to turn back because of the impending snow, the sun came out just while we finished our hike. This entire area is also full of piñon pine which carries so much magic unto itself. By the time we got to the piñon ridge, the sky was thick with clouds, so hazy you could barely see a few feet ahead. I spent the rest of the day up in a pine tree collecting its pitch. I love that this is a part of the tree you can take of without picking or harming it in any way. You simply remove the dried up sap that has either fallen to the ground or is running from its branches. While the branches tugged at my hair, I climbed higher while the wet air clung to me as my hands and fingers became sticky with tree sap. Soon enough it was time to go as the sky grew more ominous and the threat of snow was growing. As soon as we left, it began to pour signaling it was time to go. I love that what I like to do for fun has grown into something I can call my business, and I love being able to share photos of our foraging adventures with you guys to get a better look at how we collect our ingredients.