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Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Caching Up

What a strange few months it has been.  Work has been terribly stressful and with unrelenting dreary weather my spirits really took a dive.

I visited the ocean several times and really tried to enjoy and relax.  I gave in to the persistent memory of the nice dragon (long tail) kite I had seen on a previous visit to Gasworks Kites, and here it is in flight.

Notice the blue sky.  How that does revive me.  Here is the sunset from that day.

The last few weekends I have visited some old favorite places.  If it is Spring it must be time for Washington Park.  The wildflowers are just getting started and right off the bat I would say this looks like it might be a banner year for Calypso Orchids.

Even though the wild flowers seem right on time, the tulip and daffodil fields of the Skagit Flats seem a little behind.  Every year it seems like the farmers must risk their fields to far too much rain or late freezing temps.  The cold weather seems to have persisted quite a while this year.  But I captured a nice daffodil field in the early morning drive to Anacortes.

I have combined my Geocaching with my rambles and visiting familiar places is a good way to learn.  Along the way it is the little things I enjoy seeing.

Glacier scars on the bald top of Goose Rock on Whidbey Island.

a Great Blue Heron catching a little tidbit.

One of my favorite views at Washington Park.

Last weekend I was able to get away for two whole days so I headed for Catherine Creek.  We have visited there before and this year I was determined to hike all over. 

It is a little early for flowers but there were some nice finds.  As usual, the Shooting Stars and Camas are abundant.

Chocolate Lily blend in to the grasses and dead leaves under the White Oak trees, but when you get up close, their colores really captivate you.

I spent 5 hours hiking all over.   The West wind was so strong that it made the Columbia River look like it was flowing in reverse.  I did not see any windsurfers out and wonder if even they felt it was too strong.  Hiking along the west facing rim of one of the canyons I had several Auntie Em moments, feeling like Dorothy about to be swept away. 

This is wild country that shows the marks left by the Bretz Floods of 10000 years ago.  Gorges, bowls and carved out rock faces.  The Catherine Creek Arch has been documented as being a place of spirit quests for the native peoples.

This area below the hill was carved out by the violent forces of the flooding at the end of the last ice age.  Mt Hood was the most dazzling I have ever seen.  The winds were easily 35 mph+ at this point.  I got pushed about by the vortex produced by this bowl.

I finished my hike with a descent down through some woods I had never visited before.  I am wondering what wonders might grow up inside the sheltered area of conifers and yet again, it calls for another visit next month.

I was so pleased to have a good solid six hours of hiking and discovering.  I spent the night in The Dalles and left for Yakima early Easter Morning to  explore a new place.


  1. Very nice post, Marti. We'll be going back to Whidbey, both Au Sable and Hoypus in a few weeks and I intend to look for that campground then and explore it. Want to see the Ozettes in bloom and the Westerns. On another note, I'm going to be posting on Flickr a picture of an owl that we saw at Washington Park. My efforts to identify it make me think it is a Barred Owl, but that doesn't range into this area, does it?

  2. It is a Barred Owl. They nest in the park on the east side, in the woods

    I had a great encounter last year. The adults were flying about with food items and you could hear the young calling.

    All were very vocal.