Monday, November 2, 2015

An Autumn Day In The Mountains

I didn’t mean to be gone for so long.  I’ve written a hundred blog posts in my head since I was last here but they never got to my keyboard and on to you!  Everyone here is fine and doing well.  We’ve been busy with a million things that keep us coming and going – things like grandsons’ football games; appointments, shopping and errands with my dear little mother; day trips and a few days away here and there with my sweetheart; and business dealings that take time and energy.  Oh, and a new something in our life that has become part of our life and is giving us adventures we never dreamed possible at this season of our lives.  I’ll share more on that tomorrow.  I will – because I can’t wait to tell you all about it.  It’s a good thing!

A few weeks ago my sweetheart and I took a day trip into the Cascade mountains not too far from home.  My sweetheart wanted to check out a new-to-him deer hunting area that a friend had recommended.  I wanted to scout around with my sweetheart and enjoy the day in the mountains.  It wasn’t long before we began to see familiar scenes that I love!
Up the HighwayThe road took us from the valley where we live, around corners and turns in the road, alongside a beautiful river that flows from the mountains to the valley where it joins two more rivers and heads toward the sea.  Partway to our destination we came to a gorgeous, big lake.  Well, not really!  It’s where a beautiful lake should be – a lake that is usually filled with marinas and boats and people who are enjoying all kinds of water sports.  That’s the normal thing at this spot but it’s not that way anymore.  Instead, it looks like this.  Normally I would have been standing at the edge of the lake to take this photo.  But not this year!  You can see a bit of the lake - really just a river now - at the base of the hills.  The lake should be up to the tree line on those hills across the way.Dry Lake BedTwo years of drought have brought devastation and loss – loss of most of the lake and loss for the business people whose lives depend on the income that life on and around this lake brings.  A river exists where there was once a lake.  The tree stumps you see are all that’s left of a forest that once stood tall here.  The trees were cut down and many years ago a dam was built downstream to control flooding in the valleys below.  The drought has pretty much returned the land to its former state.Lake and MountainOur trip continued as we began to drive higher into the mountains.  The first signs of Fall became evident.  At first, just a little. . .Color in the MountainsAnd then more and more as the altitude changed and the temperatures cooled.More Fall ColorWe stopped along the way several times to walk on trails or see sights we didn’t want to miss.  All the while my sweetheart was checking for signs of deer for his upcoming hunting trip.  My camera seemed to find more places where the colors of Fall were on display.  Oh, how I wished we could stay longer and explore.  Fall Color
We stopped at a place where we expected to see the headwaters of the McKenzie River, a rapidly flowing river that comes from high in the Cascade Mountains.  I have lived by this river twice in my younger years and I was excited when we saw the sign directing us to the place where the river begins its descent down the mountains.  I love bridges and it didn’t take me long to get out of the car and head walk to the middle of this one.
Mountain Bridge Imagine my disappointment when I looked down to see the river and this was all I saw!
Dry River Bed No water!  More signs of the drought that has hit the West Coast over the past couple of years.  The Cascade Mountains are made up of volcanoes that erupted many, many years ago.  Lava flows that covered the countryside are evident everywhere.  It always amazes me to see trees and shrubs and flowers growing in the middle of lava beds.   Lava rock is extremely hard.  You don’t want to walk across the lava beds because the rock is so rugged it will destroy the soles of your shoes in no time at all.  Yet there is beauty in the middle of all of this hard rock.  It seems a bit impossible, but it’s true!
Lava and Color 2 Color and Lava 2
There were other adventures from our day but I’ll save them for another time.  I always enjoy sharing my corner of the world with you.  Oregon is a state of breath-taking beauty.  We have it all – sandy ocean beaches, fertile green valleys full of abundant agriculture, gorgeous high mountain vistas and deserts that have a beauty of their own.   I‘ll return and share more with you soon.  Before I do I want to show you our latest ‘adventure’.  Please come back very soon so I can tell you all about it.

5 comments:

  1. even in its drought ridden bare truth, there's beauty.
    thank you for capturing it for us to see. :)

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  2. Your area of the country is so beautiful! It's no wonder you would rather wander with your sweetie than sit at a keyboard. Life is for living and you are having a grand time :)

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  3. I so enjoyed the views from your trip. You always take such lovely pictures. Our foliage wasn't very vibrant this fall, but I still enjoyed the color change.

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  4. The pictures are stunning even with the drought. I love the fall colors and wow...would love to have some cooler temps right now. Still running my ac! Hugs and blessings, Cindy

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  5. So beautiful Adrienne....and so sad that the drought has been so bad. I'm so grateful for the little lake we live on but know that it could happen to us. blessings, marlene

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