Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Columbia River Gorge – Part 2

I realized that I should have mentioned where the Columbia River Gorge is.  The river is between Oregon and Washington.  Most of what I did was on the Oregon side, but I did go into Washington a couple of times.  I went to Vancouver, WA to go to Trader Joes and the credit union. 

I was expecting colder and rainy weather, but I wasn’t expecting this much cold and rain.  The snow level was down to 2000 feet for a few days, so some of the mountain passes were closed.  One of the hikes I wanted to do I couldn’t get to because of the snow.  Of course I didn’t find that out until I was just about there and found the road closed.  But on the drive I did see Mount Hood from several locations.

crg_mt_hood In the picture above, you can see Mt. Hood in the background, lava beds in the middle and the top of some fruit trees in the foreground.  I did make it to Government Camp (a ski resort) several days after the snow and went for a short walk in the snow.  Well being from Ga, I’m really not used to walking in snow.  When I started walking I quickly realized I wasn’t going to go far.  Some times my feet would sink just a couple of inches and other times they would sink 10 inches or so.  As I was going back to my car I noticed that the other people there had snowshoes on!!  I had a good laugh over that!

A few more waterfalls -

The above is Upper McCord Falls.  They are only about 64 feet, but one of my favorites.  The trail to the falls was interesting.  They had to blast out a trail on the the 400 foot walls around another water fall.   I also went to Elowah falls on this hike.

I was picking out pictures for this blog and put both of these in my temp area.  After looking at them,  I noticed how similar these falls are. 

The one on the left is Wahclella falls and the one on the right is Wahkeena_falls. 

One day, I went to Tom McCall Nature preserve and Rowena Crest.  This area is known for it’s wildflowers, but was extremely windy.


As you may have noticed, I like taking pictures of trails I hike.  Well one of them had a very different view that what I was used to--


This was the Starvation Creek Trail.  The trailhead was just off I-84 and as you can see was right beside the interstate for a short distance.  It was worth it.  I didn’t do the whole trail, but saw 3 more waterfalls. 

Next I go to Astoria, OR.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Columbia River Gorge – Part 1

I am really behind in this blog – Again!.  I am hoping to start blogging more often.  When I wait so long it’s sometimes hard to remember things – such as the names of some of the waterfalls you will see below.

I spent 2 1/2 weeks along the River Gorge, part of the time in Troutdale, OR in a private campground and part of the time in Memaloose State Park.  The River Gorge area is beautiful.  Between the waterfalls, wildflowers, ferns, moss…  I loved it!!  Between I-84 and OR 30 there is some great scenery just from the road. 

Below is a view of the Gorge taken on a foggy morning. 

crg_gorgeThis is Multnomah Falls, probably the most popular falls in the area. 

This area was developed in the early 1900’s.  For example the bridge in the above picture was built in 1914.  Below is the trail leading to Shepperd’s Dell Fall’s.  I kept wondering what it would look like if it was done today – probably a white PVC fence.

Latourell falls (248 ft) is a drive-up falls (several of the falls are just off the road).  But I walked to the bottom of it and got rather wet from the mist.

One day, I drove into Portland and went to the Rhododendron Gardens.  It was great. 


Some of the rhododendron’s were so big they looked like trees.   This picture was taken from underneath the rhododendron – not your typical view!

I don’t know what type of pine tree this is, but I don’t think we had this in Georgia -

One of the hikes I took was the Triple falls loop.  The first falls on the loop was Upper Horsetail or Ponytail falls (about 100 ft high). 

You can see the trail goes behind the waterfall.  Below is another view and you can see people going under it in this one -

The trail was a bit steep in a few places --

Triple falls was well worth the hike -

Some wildflowers that I saw on the trails -









The yellow flower was about the size of a pencil eraser, but the red dot on each flower intrigued me.

To be continued--

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Anacortes – Part 2

I had my shortest travel distance ever – 2.7 miles.  I went to Fidalgo Bay Rv Resort.  It has no shade (which is what I wanted) and is on the bay.   Looking one way the view is great, the other – well if you can ignore some of man’s mess it’s good to.

I think these were oil refineries.  From the campground I saw otters, sealions, bald eagles and other birds.

The campground was rather surprised to see the pheasant above.  Apparently they are not normally seen in this area.  My guess is he was lonely and was trying to make friends with the ducks.

I took the Washington ferry over to Orcas Island one day and did some hiking in Moran State Park.

The above picture was taken from Mt. Washington in Moran State Park looking out over some of the San Juan islands. 

I’ve been here for a couple of weeks now and I still can’t get over the big trees, ferns and moss!

From my previous blog, I posted a picture of a beach at Ebby’s landing where I hiked on the beach.  This time I hiked on the cliff next to the beach one way and then on the beach on the way back.

I enjoyed the hike, but I could have done without the wildlife -

One of the many things that really interested me in Washington and Oregon was tide pooling. I went to Larrabee State Park.  Just the drive up was great, but I was very impressed with the starfish or sea stars (I’ve seen them called both).

A couple more tulip pictures -

If you read the previous blog, you may remember that I mentioned they pluck the blooms once a few start aging.  I thought it was an interesting process.  These tulips still look good to me, but I guess they know more about this than I do! Before I left there were no blooming tulips left.  So I made it just in time!

I’ve had quite a bit of rainy weather while here, but I did take advantage of it and got both my Honda and RV serviced.  That’s one thing that is interesting about traveling.  You end up going to a different place every time and just hoping they do a good job.  I ended up taking the RV to the local Ford dealership and the RV to the local Honda dealership and was pleased with the service from both places.