Nature photography, political rants, and Martyman laughs from the ten-time award-winning author Marty Essen

“I’d really rather chase mice.”

“Mom and Dad are laughing and drinking on the footbridge again. They made me stop chasing mice to pose for this picture. I’d really rather chase mice.”—Nellie

Marty’s photo of the day #4053: Deb, Nellie, and I have returned from our three-day backpacking trip. When Deb and I moved to Montana, in 1996, we started a tradition of renting a U.S. Forest Service cabin each summer. When our previous generation of dogs grew old, we had to select cabins that we could drive to. Now that we have Nellie, who is just two-and-a-half-years-old, we are renting cabins that require a backpacking trip to reach. Last year the three of us backpacked into Twogood Cabin, and this week we backpacked into May Creek Cabin. Our three-day getaway was the perfect combination of hiking and relaxing, away from all human/electronic contact. A more recent tradition is spending at least one evening drinking whiskey-waters after a day of hiking, and since our most recent cabins have been on streams, we enjoyed our drinks on footbridges—laughing while Nellie plays around us.

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