Late Summer Road Trip: Mesa Verde

September 6-7, 2-17

[NOTE: Click on the photos to get much bigger versions with detail I discuss in the post]

When last we talked (September 5)  we had arrived in Mesa Verde, hiked a bit and saw some sites. We had a morning tour set up for September 6 so we walked from our room over to breakfast a few hundred yards away. We had a nice view on the walk over.20170906 0143 FE 24-240mm F3.5-6.3 OSS Mesa Verde National Park

Aramark has the concessions contract at Mesa Verde National Park so we were a little dubious about the quality of our tour. It wasn’t Aramark specifically we doubted – we had though the tour was by the National Park Service.  Regardless, we figured we’d learn something about the history, geography, archeology, and anthropology of the place. Not to worry, our tour guide was a retired principal who had taught in Indian Schools in southern Colorado. I figured we were in good hands. One of my aunts, Barbara, taught on the reservation near Window Rock, Arizona. And my uncle, who was an assistant superintendent in the Verde Valley School District, gave tours at some of the ancient Puebloan sites in Arizona – Montezuma’s Well and Montezuma’s Castle as well as Tuzigoot. So, retired educators? Bring on the knowledge!

As the morning progressed, our tour moved through time from the oldest to the most recent dwellings. It’s impossible to have direct knowledge of the people who lived here because after farming for hundreds of years, they exited en masse around 1200 AD – hundreds of years before Europeans came to North America. Nevertheless, we have learned much about the people through Anthropological studies of the old living spaces. The experts have divided the time span into three eras.  The first era had very primitive architecture with buildings made of adobe walls and thatched roofs. The most distinctive feature was the Kiva – a round building with a fire pit in the middle and air flow through a vent leading  outside. When a family or group would leave the area they would dismantle the building before leaving.

Eventually a second era developed where the Puebloans built new home sites where the old bricks were. This second era of Kivas were more detailed with additional features. The air vent would allow the air to come rushing into the home and kill the fire, so they learned to build deflectors. Here are the remains of a second generation Kiva.

Detail of a Kiva in Mesa Verde. Note the small interior wall to deflect the air around the fire pit in the middle of the floor

Detail of a Kiva in Mesa Verde. Note the small interior wall to deflect the air around the fire pit in the middle of the floor

You can see the additional architecture features of the wood rails along the inside. It is thought that religious ceremonies were held in the Kivas and the people lived in the nearby buildings that had connecting tunnels.

You may have noticed that I’m calling these people the Ancient Puebloans rather than the older, more common term Anasazi. Anasazi is a Navajo term for the old people, but if it is pronounced incorrectly it can be an insult. In addition, the Puebloans were ancestors of the Hopi and Zuni peoples rather than the Navajo. The Forest Service had a project asking for suggestions for a new name. Every tribe had different suggestions – most of which were opposed by other groups. So, the Forest Service and anthropologists settled on the accurate – but not nearly as romantic – term Ancient Puebloans.

These people lived a difficult life; their primary diet was corn and squash. At it’s best corn isn’t really that great of a grain for humans. But it was even harder for the Puebloans. They used big flat stones called metates to grind the corn into powder. It takes hours to grind corn like this. Imagine sitting eight hours a day holding a large stone and pushing it back and forth over some dried corn on another stone. I’d be exhausted in five minutes. To make matters worse, the grinding process resulted in lots of pebbles in the finished product. As a result their teeth were in horrible shape – broken and worn down.

The third architectural era featured the famous cliff dwellings. Considering these people were essentially in the stone age, didn’t know about the wheel, and had no known written language, it is astounding that they developed these elaborate structures that are still standing over 800 years later. No wheels means no pulleys everything had to be brought up by brute force.

In this photo you can get an appreciation for how difficult it must have been to live – not to mention build – these villages.

Cliff Palace and Mesa Verde

Cliff Palace and Mesa Verde

Because it is so soft, the sandstone is not suitable for tool making. If a family wanted some good stones for their grinding or for blades to scrape hides or cut apart the animals they ate, they had to go get it. The best stones are down at the bottom of the canyon in the riverbeds. It is thought the men would travel down, get some rocks and place them in a basket that they held in place with a yucca rope around their forehead. With this in place they’d climb back up the hundreds of feet of cliff wall to begin the tool making process.

As we drew closer to the site we stopped for more pictures.

Cliff Palace and Mesa Verde

Cliff Palace and Mesa Verde

Eventually we were directly across the canyon. This was a highly populated area. It is calculated that there were more people living in southwest Colorado then than there is now.

Closer up view of Cliff Palace at Mesa Verde

Closer view of Cliff Palace at Mesa Verde

If you look closely you can see a tour group in the middle of the village. That was our next destination. Groups gather on the ledge over the buildings – you can see a group on the far left side of the photo. Tour groups join a National Park Service Ranger who tells you not to touch ANYTHING other than the ground you walk on. After descending on down a series of steep rock steps you get down to the main level.

"Street Level" view of Cliff Palace in Mesa Verde, Colorado

“Street Level” view of Cliff Palace in Mesa Verde, Colorado

This dwelling space is just breathtaking; it’s hard to do it justice in just a photo or two. Look in the foreground on the right side and you’ll see two or three Kivas – the round spaces – which carried through all three archeological eras. If you look closely at the lower opening on the tower at the far right you’ll see some black smudges. This is the result of people over the years walking up, putting their hands on the building to look inside – one of the few places it is allowed. The oils on our hands discolor and ruin the adobe as the years go by.

We were allowed to touch the wall here in order to lean inside the opening and look up to view a beautiful pictograph that looks like a Navajo or Hopi geometric patterned rug.

Our tour guide is part Native American from this area and he feels a real connection to the sites. He is a multi-talented person who carved his own flute. Just before leaving we paused to hear him play a beautiful melody that fit the place perfectly.

Our National Parks tour guide playing a homemade flute at Cliff Palace

Our National Parks tour guide playing a homemade flute at Cliff Palace

We climbed down to get to the site and as a corollary to the old rule, what goes down must go back up. There were a series of three log ladders bolted into the stone we had to take to get back to our bus. I’m not a ladder fan at all so I was not looking forward to this. But it was fine – they are stout ladders with big rungs and going up was a cinch. I was struck by how tiring it was just walking around here – then we realized that we were over 7,000 feet in elevation. Not much oxygen up there.

Travelers’ tip: if you are a woman (or a guy for that matter) don’t wear a skirt; everyone gets a great view of your backside as you climb the ladders.

We piled back on the bus to go back to Far View Lodge where we had some lunch and a rest before heading out for more exploration.

We found a place (Far View site I think) where we could walk among some of the old second era structures. We discovered a few bricks with designs on them. I have no idea of the meaning or importance.

Close up of art work on a brick in Mesa Verde building

Close up of art work on a brick in Mesa Verde building

Maybe they are house numbers 🙂

Close up of art work on a brick in Mesa Verde building

Close up of art work on a brick in Mesa Verde building

After all that hiking and exploring we headed back to our room, had a nice dinner with a couple of drinks and slept soundly.

The next day, September 7, was a travel day but we couldn’t bear to part without just another view. The Ancient Puebloans may not have had the wheel or much technology, but they were very smart. They built a series of reservoirs to hold water for their crops. We first hiked down a small canyon where a series of reservoirs once existed. We saw a few ruins and got an appreciation of the work these people put into living.

Then we went back to the Far View site to go on another hike to see a reservoir that was still in recognizable shape.

Ancient Puebloan reservoir at Mesa Verde, Colorado

Ancient Puebloan reservoir at Mesa Verde, Colorado

Everyone I know who has visited here has been moved. And I now know why. To look back at this ancient people is to see just what a tough life they had. The human spirit is indomitable – we will scrabble and scrape to make a living wherever we can. Eventually, though the water just dried up and the people had to move. It is thought they worked their way down the mountain and into the Rio Grande Valley.

Mesa Verde has been on our travel list for years. I’m so glad we finally got there. It is spectacular. If you go I recommend the tour so you can learn about the people. But leave some time for personal exploring as well.

Posted in Travel, Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Late Summer Roadtrip: Mesa Verde, CO

September 5, 2017

Before I write about Mesa Verde I want to go back and mention a delicious lunch we had the day before in Moab, Utah. We’ve been through Moab a few times, most recently two years ago when we visited Arches National Park and Canyonlands. On this trip we stopped at the Moab Diner and had some green chili for lunch. It was some of the best green chili I’ve had. If you find yourself in Moab, hit up the Moab Diner and have a bowl of green chili.

And now on with our travels. After a quick breakfast of Carla’s homemade granola we hit the road for the 175 mile drive south through eastern Utah into south western Colorado, past Cortez and into Mesa Verde National Park. The park entrance is near highway 160, but we had another 30 minute to an hour drive up a mountain and into trails and views. It was too early to check into our accommodations at Far View Lodge so we continued driving down the road to a mile long loop hiking trail where we were treated to some beautiful vistas of the mesas.

Along the trail at Mesa Verde National Park

Along the trail at Mesa Verde National Park

I had to work on the photos to “dehaze” them. We encountered a lot of smoke from wildfires all the way down Utah and Colorad.

Carla was in her happy place.

Carla hiking a trail at Mesa Verde National Park

Carla hiking a trail at Mesa Verde National Park

We learned later these aren’t mesas -even though they are flat – but I forget the official name. Sorry. We found another viewpoint showing a deep canyon that was breathtaking.

Mesas of Mesa Verde

Mesas of Mesa Verde

At this point it was hard to believe people lived here over a thousand years ago. But, if you look closely… Look just under the top of the ridge on the right side of photo above. Carla pointed it out to me.

I was glad I had my 24-240 zoom lens so I could get closer and closer to what we saw. Click on the photo below to get a bigger version.

Quadruple take of Mesa Verde Cliff Dwelling

Quadruple take of Mesa Verde Cliff Dwelling

The sun was heading to the west so we got back in the car and drove the half hour back to our lodging at Far View Lodge where we had a couple of drinks and some fish tacos.

We had a tour scheduled for the next day where we could learn more about the people who lived here before Columbus “discovered” America. Stay tuned.

 

 

 

Posted in Foliage and Landscape, National Parks, Travel | 2 Comments

Late Summer Road Trip: Green River, Utah

September 4, 2017

Once Labor Day came and the kids were back in school, it is a perfect travel time for retired folk. We wanted to go down and visit my uncle and aunt and made a trip of it. In addition to the rel squad we spent time in Mesa Verde, Colorado and Sequoia National Park / Kings Canyon National Forest.

But to visit these places means you have to drive to these places. There is a lot of wide open country out here. We had smoke from wild fires both near and far. We also had some dramatic skies.

Storm clouds in Southwest Utah

Storm clouds in Southwest Utah

Last year on our drive back from New York and Chicago we stopped for lunch at the Tamarisk restaurant in Green River, Utah. It struck us a nice stopping point and would provide us with a short drive to Mesa Verde the following day. The restaurant is perched over the river and we watched a heron fishing in the shallows on an island but I couldn’t get a picture.

We got in just in time to have dinner then go outside and enjoy the sunset. Green River is a small town and we could wander across the sparsely travelled highway and go up on the bridge and down next to the river to get our pictures. It’s interesting to me to see the colors change as the sun sinks.

Sunset in Green River, Utah

Sunset in Green River, Utah

Sunset in Green River, Utah

Sunset in Green River, Utah

 

I especially like this photograph showing the silhouette of the mesa out to the west.

Sunset in Green River, Utah

Sunset in Green River, Utah

As the sun was going down we noticed a contrasting show on the opposite horizon. The moon was huge as it rose. I remember my first college reading assignment was for a Psychology class – we had to read an article from a science journal each week and report. My first reading was why the moon appears so much larger on the horizon. Too bad I don’t remember the reason 🙂

Moon rise over Green River, Utah

Moon rise over Green River, Utah

As it got darker the moon becomes brighter but smaller.

Moon rise over Green River, Utah

Moon rise over Green River, Utah

As I work my way through the 1,000+ photos I took I’ll post about the later parts of our trip.

Posted in Foliage and Landscape, Travel | Leave a comment

Reading: The Code of the Woosters by PG Woodhouse

The Code of the WoostersThe Code of the Woosters by P.G. Wodehouse

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The one word review of this book is “Hilarious”. It’s my third or fourth time I’ve read it and it pleases

It is the classic Jeeves and Wooster story. Bertie has to steal a sliver cow creamer from Pop Basset without getting his spine pulled out by Roderick Spode – all the while trying to patch up the tiff between Madeline Basset and Gussie Finknottle. If the Finknottle/Basset marriage is off then Bertie will have to marry Madeline – because that is what a gentleman does. “…after being blackmailed by an aunt at breakfast, I was now being blackmailed by a female crony before dinner. Pretty good going, even for this lax post-war world.” [p 86]

Thank goodness for Jeeves.

But, it’s not really about the plot – hilarious as it is – the plot is only there to set up the dialogue between Bertie and the rest of the cast. Here Bertie is describing Gussie trying to get away from Spode who wants to beat Gussie into a jelly. “… confronted with Spode in the flesh, he now retreated to the wall and seemed, as far as I could gather, to be trying to get through it. Foiled in this endeavour, he stood looking as if he had been stuffed by some good taxidermist.” [p 123]

And when Bertie helps Gussie escape out a second floor window through the use of a sheet: “I don’t think I have ever assisted at a ceremony which gave such universal pleasure to all concerned. The sheet didn’t split, which pleased Gussie. Nobody came to interrupt us, which pleased me. And when I dropped the suitcase, it hit Gussie on the head, which delighted Aunt Dahlia. As for Jeeves, one could see that the faithful fellow was tickled pink at having been able to cluster round and save the young master in his hour of peril. His motto is ‘Service'”.[p 217] But of course there are plenty of pages left and the hour of Bertie’s peril has only just started.

This book is full of my favorite sayings of Bertie’s
– I don’t mind people talking rot in my presences, but it must no be utter rot.
[p 162]
– He was more to be pitied than censured. [p 185]
– I would have preferred to get oustide a curried egg or two. [p 186] [What a great way to say you want to eat something!]
– …like a Scottish elder rebuking sin from the pulpit [p 139]

and of course my favorite of all time
– What I want from you is less of the ‘Well, really sir’ and more of the buckling-to spirit. Think feudally Jeeves.

I can’t think of a better summer read. We still have a week or two of summer left – pick it up and have a laugh.

View all my reviews

Posted in Reading | Leave a comment

Hood Canal

A couple of our friends have a nice waterside place on Hood Canal in Washington. To get there, we head north on I5 until we hit Olympia then head up 101 to Shelton then over to Belfair and down 106. We drove up Friday morning after breakfast and arrived in time to relax and sit on the deck overlooking the water.

Boats at the dock

Boats at the dock

Rising tide on Hood Canal

Rising tide on Hood Canal

We heard a plane overhead and saw this float plane going back and forth over the canal.

Float plane over Hood Canal

Float plane over Hood Canal

When the tide goes the boats on the docks are high and dry.

Low Tide at Hood Canal

Low Tide at Hood Canal

One of the neighbors has a beautiful sailboat out in the deeper part of the canal.

Sailboat at anchor at Hood Canal

Sailboat at anchor at Hood Canal

As the evening came on we had adult beverages and snacks.

Adult beverages were served

Adult beverages were served

Baby carrots: one of the hors d'oeuvres

Baby carrots: one of the hors d’oeuvres

They have a nice collection of seashells.

Sea shell collection

Sea shell collection

The next day we went up to the Theler wetlands nature preserve in nearby Belfair. We walk the three mile trails most every time we visit.

View from the Theler Wetlands nature preserve in Belfair, Washington

View from the Theler Wetlands nature preserve in Belfair, Washington

View from the Theler Wetlands nature preserve in Belfair, Washington

View from the Theler Wetlands nature preserve in Belfair, Washington

Carla and friend at the wetlands nature preserve in Belfair Washington

Carla and friend at the wetlands nature preserve in Belfair Washington

Our second night provided some drama. About 3:30PM a pickup truck towing a trailer roared down the local highway, lost control about 5 houses down the road and slammed into a power pole. We heard the screech and the BAM! We went out front to see what happened. I – along with plenty of others judging from the busy circuits – called 911. There was a fire that I think was brought under control fairly quickly. Two fire trucks; two medic trucks and plenty of police came down to help.

The power pole was sheared and was kept up by leaning on the truck that hit it. After the emergency was taken care of the local power company came out to replace the pole and transformer. We didn’t have electricity back until 10:30 at night. But no worries. good friends make for good times.

The nighttime view of the canal is beautiful.

Late evening on Hood Canal

Late evening on Hood Canal

Sunday morning after breakfast we packed up earlier than usual and headed home. We were a little concerned about the impact of southbound eclipse traffic. But we had no problems and made it home in just a little over our usual time.

We had a good time and look forward to being invited again.

A note on the photos. I used Sony Memories to transfer them from my camera to my IOS Camera Roll on my iPad. I then imported selected pictures in to Lightroom Mobile to make some adjustments, then exported them back to the IOS camera roll. And I can’t seem to get my banner photo to work in this post. And after moving them back and forth the adjustments don’t move. Definitely things to work on before our next road trip

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Foliage and Landscape, Friends, Photography, Travel | Leave a comment

Providence Bridge Stride 2017

August 13, 2017

Without a doubt my favorite Portland walk is the annual Providence Bridge Pedal and Stride. It is special because it only happens one day a year. The city shuts down many of the bridges in town for a Sunday morning and turns them over to bicyclists and walkers. This is the third year in a row we’ve done it and it was the best yet – we got to walk over four bridges instead of just two!The starting point is just south of the Morrison Bridge on the Portland Waterfront. After crossing the Morrison we head south and then over the top deck of the  Marquam Bridge – an I5 interstate bridge. From there we have a mile or so on the closed-for-the-morning I405 freeway and across the other I5/I405 bridge that spans the Willamette River in Portland – the Fremont. Finally we head south and over the Steel Bridge back to the finish line at Portland Tom McCall Waterfront Park.  Here is the map.

2017 Providence Bridge Stride Route

2017 Providence Bridge Stride Route

 

Carla and I, along with her sister and her friend and our visitor from Italy hopped on MAX about 7:15 and headed into downtown. Last year Carla was out of town so her sister and I did it ourselves; we got there early and were at the head of the pack. Today we missed the earlier MAX train so got to the starting line just to see the main striding pack about 1/4 mile down the road. No worries – we had plenty of time and didn’t have to contend with too many walkers.

If you live in the Northwest you  know we have had an extended heat wave (for us) – I think 6 weeks without measurable precipitation. With smoke blowing in from the many fires up in British Columbia it hasn’t been the most pleasant weather to be out in. But Saturday night / Sunday morning a marine front came in from the Pacific giving us a bit of rain and lots of cloudy skies. I think the bridges look a little nicer with blue sky backgrounds; but we were happy to have it cool and smokeless skies.

I won’t bore you with too much narrative; I’ll let the pictures do the talking – click on the images to get bigger views if you wish. Oh, whom am I kidding; I can’t shut up; I’ll have plenty to say.

Looking south from the Morrison Bridge

Looking south from the Morrison Bridge

Hawthorne Bridge with OHSU in the background

Hawthorne Bridge with OHSU in the background

Here is the newest span across the Willamette River – Tilikum Crossing. Cars aren’t allowed – it’s a commuter bridge for pedestrians, busses, streetcar, and MAX.

Tilikum Crossing as seen from the Marquam Bridge

Tilikum Crossing as seen from the Marquam Bridge

The scene on top of the tall interstate bridges is a party with everyone stopping to snap photos and get some snacks.

Providence Bridge Pedal/Stride on the Marquam Bridge

Providence Bridge Pedal/Stride on the Marquam Bridge

Our Italian visitor doesn’t like to have her photo taken but consented to memorialize the occasion. Here is our little group.

The striders!

The striders!

As we walked down the west side of the Marquam Bridge we had a very nice view of OHSU. It’s the local county hospital, medical school, dental school, nursing school, VA hospital, and research facility. If you look at the center of the picture just in front of the blue “L” shaped building you can see the the tram station. There are two cable trams running from the hill down to the new clinics, schools, and research centers sprouting up on the south Waterfront. I’m proud to say I’ve been part of the institution going on 18 years – though I work in downtown Portland.

OHSU campus in the Portland West Hills

OHSU campus in the Portland West Hills

After a longish walk north on the eerily car-free I405 southbound lanes we approached the other I5/I405 bridge – the Fremont. Like most of the downtown bridges, this was built before we moved to Portland in the 70’s. The huge  middle part between the arches was fabricated in California, assembled at Swan Island north of the city, and floated up the Willamette and gently dropped into place. I would have like to have seen that. You can read about it here.

Approach to the Fremont Bridge

Approach to the Fremont Bridge

 

Top Deck of the Fremont Bridge

Top Deck of the Fremont Bridge

More entertainment on this bridge. A group of Japanese drummers.

Drummers providing entertainment on the Fremont Bridge

Drummers providing entertainment on the Fremont Bridge

After lingering on the party deck for a while we finished crossing and headed south to our final bridge crossing – the Steel bridge. With the Burnside Bridge in the forefron you can see some of the other bridges. the Marquam is the tall one to the south and you can see one of the spires of Tilikum Crossing in the left background. I think of the Willamette River being straight through downtown Portland but it definitely has a bend or two.

Looking south from the Steel Bridge

Looking south to the Burnside Bridge from the Steel Bridge

 

Portland Waterfront from the Steel Bridge

Portland Waterfront from the Steel Bridge

After crossing the finish line we had a cookie or piece of fruit and went hunting lunch. We were on Pine Street so we couldn’t pass by Pine Street Market – a big hall with a few dining options inside – think of it as a mall food court on steroids. Portland is a renown foodie town so you won’t find franchise food here – there are great options for burgers, pizza and other treats. Carla’s sister and her friend had Vietnamese Bim Bop bowls with plenty of veggies and a fried egg on top. Carla and I had ramen from Marukin – don’t think Top Ramen in the cellophane packets. This is the real deal; delicious noodles in an ambrosia-like broth. I had pork broth; Carla and a combination of pork and chicken. I’ve eaten ramen in a few Portland spots – this is the best. Our Italian visitor had pizza. She’s been sampling pizza and pasta on her visit to see how it matches the real deal back home. The pizza isn’t like the Italian version she is used to but it is good.

Um, why no pictures of lunch? Cause I was too hungry to  think about taking any! Sorry

The walk was just over 7.5 miles – not too bad at all. If your are thinking of coming to Portland, August is a great time and the Providence Bridge Pedal and Stride is a great way to see the city – in a way you just can’t whizzing by in your car.

 

Posted in Foliage and Landscape, Friends, Photography, Portland, Walking | Leave a comment

Walking in the Neighborhood

I try to get out and walk quite a bit. It’s so much easier in the summer than the winter. The light and absence of rain makes it easy to get out most any time – though this summer we’ve been hit by a long hot streak. I don’t go out if it’s over 90.

Over the years I’ve slowly extended my range and I have a series of walks depending on how long I want to go and how strenuous a walk I want. After a hard day of work I’ll go a little longer than 2 miles on pretty flat terrain through the local high school and back through the neighborhood. When I really want to stretch myself I have a walk just shy of 6 miles with an elevation gain of just over 400 feet.

There are two parts of walking I don’t like: dogs and traffic. Barking dogs behind fences are annoying but I understand; it’s the dogs not on leash that give me pause. On the Memorial Day weekend of 2016 I was on one of my normal routes when I noticed a German Shepard hanging next to his owner who was cleaning out her car. Although he had a leash, it wasn’t connected to anything. As soon as I came near the house the dog rushed at me snapping and snarling; he got a nip at me as I turned away – just before the owner got him. He nipped my pants but didn’t get my skin – a close call. I gave the owner a loud and prolonged piece of my mind.  “DO YOU KNOW HOW FRIGHTENING THAT IS!?”Now if I’m walking and see a dog not on a leash I’ll call out “DOG! DOG!” to the owner so s/he will get it in. I may get a funny or nasty look but I just don’t think I should have to deal with it.

Traffic is another consideration; one of my extended walks takes me along a feeder road – Brockman, for those in the area – that has a steady stream of traffic. Earlier this summer I was trying to listen to a baseball game (go Dodgers!) but the traffic roar drowned it out. I determined to find another route that parallels Brockman to get over to the Fanno Creek Trail. Eureka, Carr St runs just a couple of blocks north of Brockman and goes through a beautiful little neighborhood.IMG_0667a

As I turned a corner to join back up with the pathway that leads to a bridge over Brockman/Greenway I saw an awesome site. Rather than completely cutting down a tree, someone carved a totem pole of sorts.

IMG_0640a

Only half a block from my normal route but I had completely missed it for years. What a nice little treat.

South Beaverton is supplied with ample walking trails enabling the walker to stay off the roadways. Being western Oregon we have plenty of little creeks that run through town; many of the walkways parallel the creeks. We even have Beavers in Beaverton. They are very industrious – we have a couple of the little creeks effectively dammed up. I’ll try to get a picture of one on a walk soon.

Out of all the greenery I came across a dead tree next to one of the creeks.

IMG_0657a

I wonder what happened to it; everything around it is nice and green.

Did I tell you about last spring when a big wind storm knocked down some sections of fences? Out on a walk a couple of days afterward I saw something on the other side of a broken fence. It wasn’t a dog; I couldn’t figure out what it was until I took a picture and blew it up a bit. It’s a PIG!

IMG_0023

Someone’s going to be having barbecue this summer. Funny how we never really know what is going on in the houses we walk by.

And speaking of walking; tomorrow we will take part in our third Providence Bridge Pedal/Stride.  We walk it. The city shuts down some of the bridges and roads in Portland allowing thousands of walkers and bikers to enjoy the views. You can read about our experiences in 2016 and 2015. This year we’ll walk over four bridges including both the I5/I405 bridges: the Marquam and the Fremont.

 

Posted in Foliage and Landscape, Walking | Leave a comment