Saturday, June 30, 2012

Busy Summer, Not Knitting Much

I really haven't been doing much knitting in the past 2 weeks.  I'm slugging along this very simple, straight forward, top down, raglan pullover with Manos del Uruguay Cotton Stria that I've had in my stash for years. Well, there was a reason they just sat there in the closet, not a very inspiring yarn for me. Every night I'd knit about 4 or 5 rounds and put it away. Hopefully I'll get it done within the next coupla weeks, so I can move on to something else.

On the other hand, I'd been dyeing fiber, and I even learned a thing or two about dyeing this time.

With acid mixed in the dye solution, which was what I used to do, dye striked the fiber fast and not spreading much. It created a spotty look and very different from vinegar sprayed on after dyeing.  By not adding acid to the dye solution, the dye spreaded more and it worked better for dyeing gradient. And yes, I'd been playing with dyeing up gradients simply because I love gradient fibers.

I'd also learned to organize my dyeing process a lot better too. I usually just mixed up the dye every time I dye a braid of fiber.  I finally got my acts together and mixed up solution as batch and stored them in jars, which as I'd found out, made dyeing a lot easier.

And at the last minute I decided to join Ravelry's Tour de Fleece spinning. Being a total commitment-phobe, I joined the Lantern Team, which is for people who cannot spin everyday. Perfect.


Yesterday's hike was from Bratovich Park on top of Kingsbury Grade, going north on the Tahoe Rim Trail towards Spooner Summit.  I got to go on my own since Paul worked yesterday.

I picked this trail to avoid the July 4th crowd, and I felt pretty smug about my wise choice. First it was super close to my house. Living right below Kingsbury Grade, it took less than 10 minutes to drive up to the summit and to the parking lot, no need to drive through town. I was very pleased to find the lot not full at all. There was a group of multi-families and loud kids at the lot putting on sunblock. I quickly got my stuff together and started hiking ahead of them. I could hear them from a distance away as I was walking, but they disappeared after a few minutes. I figured they would. Most people go for 2 mile loop to Castle Rock for the stunning view of Tahoe Basin and climbing among the rocks.  At the1/2 mile fork I turned the other way to  Tahoe Rim trail and hiked for another 2.5 or maybe 3 miles before turning around. Total hike time about 3.5 hours. Other than the big group at trailhead, I only encountered a single cyclist, 3 lone hikers and 1 couple the entire time.

I was tired when I got home, so last night I only knitted 2 rounds on that s-l-o-w sweater.

a view of the lake during the hike, 
with Emerald Bay right across the lake in the center of the picture. 

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