Thursday, December 10, 2009

Another Hike

I don't know about your house, but it's brrrrr-cold around here. Our lowest temps were 9 degrees for a high and -10 degrees for a low on Tuesday and Wednesday. This was following a beautiful snow storm on Sunday, where we accumulated about 10 inches of a very light dry crystal snow. Normally I would be out taking photos of all the beauty of a frozen landscape canopied by a brilliant blue sky and winter sunshine....but I came down with a very weird kind of virus I think. We traveled to Washington to help celebrate Kory's 16th birthday, and I was sick all the while. I don't think I was contagious though, as no one else has/had any symptoms. The jury is out as to what it actually was, although I am very glad it was of short duration. Today (Thursday) I am almost back to my normal self, and trying to get caught up on a few things. I noted in Mom's email that she was mildly complaining about a lack of blogs to look at, so I am trying to help her out.
I am almost out of stored up photos, so will start taking some new ones. But for now I have one last hike I haven't blogged about yet. I am still into fall...although I had better get busy about Christmas! My friend Jane Ford is an avid outdoors woman. She grew up in the Central Oregon outdoors, and has taught hiking, snowshoeing and skiing for many years. She offered to take me on a hike, again at the very last moment of our glorious fall. We decided on the Metolius River, as it is one of my favorite destinations. It is west of Bend, towards the Santiam Pass. We drove out in the morning of a beautiful day, and parked at the fish hatchery there...shown above. The hatchery is one of the places I really want to take my grandsons the next time they visit. It's a lot of fun there. However, on this day we decided to start hiking south of the hatchery right away.
Here's the view of the river as we began hiking south, along the right side in this photo. I have been on many hikes along this river, but never on this particular trail. The river has an extraordinary quality to it because it flows over lava, and where there are cracks and crevices in the lava the color changes to the beautiful aqua you see in the photo. All along the trail we were treated to views of this amazing water.

Here's the trail we followed, and we were just getting into the fall color among the vine maples in this photograph.

When everything is just right, the vine maples turn an almost neon color of red and orange. Stunning next to the blue river and against the blue sky.

Here is a photo of some of the small trees and river rapids. Jane told me she had a surprise for me...

and this was it. Another river, flowing from underground on this hillside empties into the Metolius. It has no name, since it is so short, but comes out with force and beauty. It's pretty wide, with about 6-7 streams emptying into the bigger river.

Here it is again, looking back after we had passed it. No picture could do it justice, it was just wonderful to stand and watch it. I read recently on anther blog that God gives so richly and abundantly. He fills mountainsides with wildflowers, though there are no human eyes to see them. He gives beautiful sunsets that only the whales will see...and in this case a river that flows where only a few will ever see it. I feel privileged to be one of those few...

We stopped and ate our picnic lunches, then turned and retraced our steps back. On the way we saw this fly fisherman, and I thought it was a good photo of the river and the way we were all enjoying it. Don't you wish it was you out there Samuel?
It was a great day and hike...thanks for letting me share it with you!

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