Sunday, February 19, 2012

Homemade Bread and Fig Newtons for a Big Hiking Day

Spring is in the air! This week I saw two worms on the jogging path. That’s a sure sign for spring, right?

It’s President’s Day on Monday so I get the day off! DFJ and I are going to Beacon Rock along the Columbia River for a big hike today. The Columbia River Gorge is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been to and I cannot wait to go back. The weather report says it will be mostly sunny with a high of 45 degrees F. Should be pretty warm! Well, for winter at least. I am so excited! Hiking is one of my most favorite activities. Our last camping/hiking trip was September of last year at Wallowa Lake in Oregon and it feels like eons ago.  

Last summer, DFJ and I went on a spontaneous biking trip to The Dalles. As soon as we got to Memaloose State Park and pitched our tent, we went on a quick, early evening bike ride on the Mosier Twin Tunnels bike path. It was an awesome, super-smooth, paved path, with a gorgeous view of the gorge. The sun was sitting low in the sky and the air was starting to cool. Just perfect! There was no one else on the path except for a lizard that I ran over (cringing at the sad memory). Wind on my face, soft rays of sunlight warming my shoulders, the smell of cool, fresh air, breathtaking view of the Columbia Gorge, and the special moment shared with DFJ was pure heaven. I have never felt so free and happy.

On the way back to the car, during the last mile of our ride, I fell off my bike and somehow managed to stab my tricep with my bike’s brake lever. Freak accident. I had to be brave and bike back to the car with a hurt arm. A not-so-quick trip to Hood River hospital’s emergency room and a few stitches fixed me. The next day, a very nice Vietnamese family offered to feed us some pho, after we had borrowed their lighter twice. It was so good and it was probably the best pho I’ve ever had, complete with all the basil and bean sprout fixings. I was amazed at how prepared this family was for their camping trip.

Because my poor arm could not handle any biking, we went on a hike instead. The view on top of Rowena Crest was amazing. I want to see this again and I will in a few hours! Woohoo!

Columbia River

Reminiscing my fun summer memories is making me feel sooooo giddy for the adventure today. I can hardly wait to get out of the house and go. But I want to share some other things that I’m excited about today… our snacks! Deli sandwiches on homemade bread (recipe will be posted later this week) and Jenna Weber’s (Eat,Live, Run) Whole Wheat Fig Newtons. It is so good!!! I had to have a taste test last night because I couldn't wait to see how they turned out. If you haven’t made homemade fig newtons yet, make it… and use Jenna’s recipe.

I made a few modifications:

½ cup of brown sugar for the dough

1 ½ cups dried figs and ½ cup dried cranberries (didn’t have enough figs)
2 tablespoons of sugar for the filling mixture (the dried cranberries are plenty sweet)


Now, off to Beacon Rock! Have a blessed Sunday everyone!


  1. the food look delicious (:

  2. Beautiful pics! I love the idea of packing along food for a hike or a trip. I'm always prepared too!

    1. I know... me tired and hungry = super cranky.

  3. Wow those look delicious. I love Fig Newtons so I'll definitely have to try these. These photos are gorgeous. Now I want to plan a trip to the Columbia River Gorge!

    1. Do it! It's beautiful... so many bike paths and good hiking!


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