Saturday, April 18, 2009

My First Backpacking Trip

Although I am sure any avid backpacker would just shake their head and laugh at me, but I went on my first backpacking outing! We left from my house and headed toward the ocean. We got a subway for dinner (which helped me pack light) and started walking down the beach. It was a beautiful afternoon, and we had the beach pretty much all to ourselves.

Since we were planning on keeping the hike pretty short, Daisy came with us too!
I guess we weren't totally alone on the beach......

Seals were even checking us out from the bay.

This was our first break spot. We had just technically left the spit, and now were officially on the beach. Daisy wasn't nearly as tired as she looked.....yet.

This table was at out break site. I stared at it for a little bit, and was quite turned off by the whole thing. Then Jered walked around it, and we were both pleasantly surprised.

Please Leave???? What is that supposed to mean?
Oh....when you go to the other side, it says "FOR ALL". That is a little more inviting.
Then it gets even enjoy for all! Oh that is so sweet, and we sure were enjoying!
I still managed to find a mushroom in the middle of spring on the beach. What a crazy place to grow!
We found a great place between Gov. Patterson and Beachside state park. There were a few people around, but none with the same idea as us. We climbed up on a little hill, and found a little dip in the sand that would protect us from the wind.
This picture was going to be so cute, but Daisy caught me watching her.
This was my view, lying on the sand with my backpack. Out of the wind, and as quiet as the beach can be. It was so beautiful.
Since we had only walked a few miles, Daisy was still in the mood for playing. She couldn't understand the we had other things to do, like enjoy ourselves......
And watch the magnificent sunset!
And watch other animals enjoy the sunset as well.....Maybe they weren't enjoying it like we were, but it was attractive to them for some reason, maybe food?
We, and mostly Jered set up the tent just before the sun went down. We had gathered some wood earlier, and once it got dark, we lit up the beach with an orange glow.
Daisy slept under the rain fly on Jered's tent, but by the time we got up, she had moved out onto the sand to sleep. She seemed to have more stretch out room there.
We had a great morning view.
Daisy woke up slowly.
The sun was peeking out through the trees. No doubt it was going to be a beautiful day.
I love it when I am right.
Heading back home, the seals greeted us once again.
My legs were tired and a little sore, but I think it worked out good. I am going to try to walk everyday with a backpack, so I will be in good enough shape to tackle our next trek. In a few weeks we are taking a long weekend and hiking from work to my house, which we are thinking is at least 24 miles (that is of course if we don't get rained out:). I am a little worried since I was tired from this hike (around 5 or 6 miles round trip), but I know I can do it, I just need some practice! As long as I see beautiful things all around me (and we are going to hike on the beach!) I will have good excuses to stop and take breaks; so I can take pictures. And I have a feeling I am going to need a lot of breaks.

Our New Garden

I am determined to have a garden this year, so Jered built me this raised bed. I love it because I can look out my bathroom window to see it.

We finally got some fill to put in it this last weekend, so I am going to track the progress through the summer.
My only regret so far was that I forgot to buy something to put at the bottom so the weeds don't grow through.

We have been growing lettuce and a few other vegetables in mini green houses (ie, the taco salad containers from Taco Bell) so we had a few things to plant already.
I couldn't help buying some older lettuce and some onion starts at the last nursery I went to though.
Inside now are a row of carrots, green onions, walla walla onions, cucumber (regular and pickling) and four rows of lettuce (all different ages). I have never made pickles before, but since Jered loves pickles so much, I am going to try it this year. My friend Jerry's wife has some wonderful pickle recipes she is going to give me this fall. I am so excited, mostly in hopes that I won't have to buy lettuce for the summer. I hate it because I never finish the whole head, then I end up throwing away some, and that makes me crazy!!
This is also going to be awesome because this raised bed is the only place that is above all of the laundry and bath water run off. The black pipe beside the raised bed is my bathtub drain, it goes past the raised bed and onto the ground below. Besides the fact that it doesn't seem legal to just drain grey water straight onto the ground, all of the chemicals that I use to cleanse myself (as well as my laundry soap and such) will not contaminate my garden. So I am really excited to learn new things about gardening, and have a place to track my project with my pictures on my blog! It is all working out so good!

Friday, April 17, 2009

Boating on the Alsea

We have now advanced from the lake to the river. It is a
welcome change of scenery

The tide was coming in, and we were rowing toward the ocean. The tide wasn't that strong, so we coasted down just fine.

Across the river. Somewhere over there is Drift Creek. Jered and I are going to boat up there sometime and camp up in the woods. It is also accessible from the other side of the river, but I think it will be fun to kayak there.

Another awesome river front property for sale.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Rainbow on the Alsea

One of the many beautiful scenes that I have been lucky enough to witness on the Alsea River. I was glad that Jered was with me, because I forgot my camera!
We had just returned to the car from a rather short hike up forest service road 58, when the down pour began.
This quiet one way bridge gave us the most perfect view!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

The Canadians Are Coming!

Last week I had the pleasure of getting to go to the big city of Salem for a meeting! The trips are usually fun (I love getting to go out for dinner). This time I had to go to the meeting by myself, so the drive was a little lonely, but everything turned out great. I got to decide where I wanted to stay, so I chose the Holiday Inn express, which is right next to Costco (the whole reason I wanted to stay there).

So before I went shopping at Costco, and got a huge slice of pizza for dinner (at Costco) I though I should go for a quick jog to burn off some built up meeting energy. I appear to get lost everywhere I go, so I took it easy and headed off on a "main" road. I was going to go straight down and back, I didn't see then there would be any way I could get lost.

So off I go......I get across a little bridge and a block down and I run into this crazy scene!!

Yes, that is two nutria, hanging out with Canadian Geese! I stopped dead in my tracks. I couldn't believe my eyes!! Is this what happens in the big city?? Then it gets crazier!!.......

Some baby Canadian Geese appear!!! OMG they were so cute!! I must have stood there for five minutes before I decided to continue on my run. I only made it a few more blocks down the road before I made myself turn around and go back to my hotel for my camera (don't take the camera jogging) and made it back before they were all gone.

Something in that grass has to be good! The geese thought I was strange, along with the fifty or so cars that went by in the few minutes I was out there snapping shots.
More curious geese attempted to make it over to this "magic grass" and almost lost their lives in the middle of the highway. All four of them made is successfully though!

I got a little nervous here.....It turns out that I am afraid of geese, so when they started walking toward me, my heart started pounding and I started walking backwards. I wasn't sure how aggressive these birds were, but I wasn't about to find out on my own.
Seriously though, how cute are those babies! They were huge too! Almost as big as Seagull.
They didn't come after me in the end, just headed toward the water for a bath or something.
The nutria was not as scary, so I got a close up of him (or her). They are so cute, even though they look like rats!
So this ended up being one of my most exciting trips to Salem ever! And the pizza from Costco was wonderful! I did get a grease stain on my shirt from attempting to take a bigger bite than I could chew, but that is a whole different story.....