Sunday, September 30, 2012

Mueller Park – Fall!


After a rather exciting day at Color Fest I decided to drive around and get some nice pictures of the mountains that are currently exploding with color. I didn’t anticipate hiking today, but we stopped by the Mueller Park trailhead and well, one thing led to another…

I live pretty close to Mueller Park so it is one of the more common trails I hike. Late Fall of 2010, Winter 2010, and Summer in 2011 albeit a different trail within the same park.

Huh. I thought for sure I have done it in the springtime. I guess I was mistaken when I said now that I have hiked this in fall I have done every season here. Guess I have an excuse to return, you know, so I’m not a liar. :-p


Colorful shot down the street.


The entrance into Mueller Park.


I love how otherwise boring shots are rather interesting with some color!



The hillsides are so beautiful!



Sections of the trail aren’t so bad either!






View down into the smoggy valley below. We still had some smoke from fires elsewhere blowing into the valley.


Lots and lots of color!




Trail of color!



Elephant Rock.


A little closer.


And we have reached the pipeline scar.

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And what is this? A deer and her fawn. Didn’t have my telephoto lens unfortunately, so not a terribly great pic.


The scar, surrounded by color. I have mentioned before what the scar is, they are building a pipeline. They promise to fill it in again when they are done, but going on 2 years now it is an ugly scar traversing the mountainside.

Well this officially marks the highest I have hiked here. I have always wanted to make it to Elephant Rock, but due in part to the pipeline, and timing of hikes (like today) it just hasn’t been in the cards for me, yet.


Itty bitty deer in front of lots of color.








I am kind of digging the fall colors with the fading light.

This is the closest to sundown we have been on the trail in a while so, without actual flashlights we had to double time it to be safe.

All in all, not a bad little fall hike. The color seemed to be more on the other side of this little canyon than the one we were on, but it was still very pretty. We saw some deer, which is always nice.

9 out of 10 Squirrels.

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Saturday, September 29, 2012

Davis County Color Fest


I have been seeing pictures from various color festivals for the last 2 years and they have always been awesome, and it looked like a lot of fun. Somehow I just never made it, until today!


Quick shot of the colorful mountains. What a perfect backdrop for a color fest!


They had official throwing’s every half hour, but between those people were chasing and chalking each other.




The beginning of a throwing. I love all of the color!

What I liked about this particular color fest, is it was a lot less crowded than the other ones I have seen. However this was the first time they have done it up here, so word hasn’t gotten out yet.



Eventually it all starts mixing together and turns kind of brownish-grey.


But then there are some bursts of color again.


And people start walking away covered in bright colorful chalk.


I had a small problem with my vision afterwards. haha.


They look like they lost a fight with some smurfs.

This was super fun! I highly recommend it. Who doesn’t like running around and throwing stuff at each other? I was a spirit lifting adventure of bringing out your inner child.

Huh. I just assumed it was the Hare Krisna’s but apparently this is actually a traveling fund raising troop. Very cool. See if they are coming near you here.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Oregon Trip 2012 Days 5 and 6


Day 1 and 2: The drive up, and the Multnomah Falls area.

Day 3 Part 1: Sweet Creek

Day 3 Part 2: Cape Perpetua

Day 4: Cannon Beach and Ecola State Park.

Today as we were eating breakfast and watching the ocean we watched a whale spout, saw some back, and in an absolute first for me saw a tail flip out! Yay! a playful whale! I put my breakfast down, grabbed the camera and rushed outside in an attempt to hopefully get a tail shot!


A little leftover spray and a back.


Better view of the back. No tail, but this was still cool. These things can sure move fast! You think you have an idea of where they might pop up next and nope they are somewhere else completely.

After finishing breakfast we decided to head down to Yaquina Head. This is a nice little area we have made a point to hit each year. Well, this year because my mom wanted to hear the cobble stones at cobble beach as last year we went during low tide and missed it.


Well today seems to be a good day for whales! As we approached the beach be spotted one swimming around out in the bay. Apparently it had been circling the bay for some time.


I like the colors of this shot.




Some playful seals playing about.



We found a loose seastar. We did pick it up as we could see it wasn’t attached to anything, but I could see it was still alive and put it back in the ocean. Not to mention, this is a state park and even if I knew for a fact it had expired I couldn’t have taken it as a souvenir anyway.

Cobble Beach is unique in the fact that it is covered in smoothed down volcanic rock. or cobbles. The first time we visited, I could not get over the sound of the waves pushing the stones around. My mom has since dubbed it Talking Beach. The 2nd time we visited my mom walked down just so she could hear it, however we arrived during low tide and did not have anything. This year we arrived between low and high tide (which I thought would be fine) and it wasn’t much better. The video above is the best I got, which is not very good. sigh. I was wrong, you should arrive at high tide to hear this amazing noise.




Yaquina Head Lighthouse.


The whale is back.



sea lions

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Now here is a good shot, albeit far away, some spout and back!





The lighthouse is closed on Wednesdays which allowed me to get a few shots without a crowd. However, some fog rolled in.


The giant compass.

From here we wandered down to Nye Beach, in a hope to find some agates.



According to Landis’s readings, beaches with bedrock are good places to find agates. We did find one we like. Anyway, I particularly like the roll of fog over the hills in the background.



Again without the bedrock.


I love when the little streams come out on the beaches and meet the ocean.

After wading on the beach and doing typical beach combing stuff for a while we decided to head back. On the way back, we stopped in the actual town of Depoe Bay for a minute.


Terrible picture of cars, but I really liked the swoop of fog coming down the hill.


The wet cliffs below the room. We had planned on eating dinner at Pier 101 tonight, which meant we didn’t have a lot of time to do anything else, but I did not want to spend my last day on the coast sitting in my room. So I decided to walk down to the hotel we stayed in a few years ago and see the family of seals.


We had this this cop car sitting right outside our hotel the whole time we were here, as we walked by I confirmed my suspicions. Dummy decoy. Hello officer torso! I will say, it worked. When we first arrived we missed the turnout for the hotel (the car was right after it) and we did everything completely perfectly right to turn around because we were worried we would be pulled over. Hah! I think it is really meant to get people to slow down before hitting town, and I am sure it works really well for that. It was just kind of silly actually seeing it up close.



Yep they still hang out here.

We still had some time left, and there were 2 areas we had passed I wanted to go see. Boiler Bay, and Fogarty Creek State Park. Since we have already been to Boiler Bay we decided to check out Fogarty Creek.


It was nice and foggy in this area.


Bunny! This little area (as you will see in a minute) is half a cool wooded picnic area, and half beach. Apparently, the bunnies from the woods can be found on the beach at times. I didn’t see that today, but I did find this cute guy in the wooded area.


Fogarty Creek


And under the highway leads us to the beach.





I really dig the fog!




We seem to have arrived during low tide. I like the cracks in the bedrock.



Sea stars!



More fog.


And from beach, to woods. Kind of bizarre instant change of environment.


Here is a good view of the upper portion of the park. After that we started towards Pier 101 for dinner.


(DBP Album) This is Siletz Bay Wildlife Preserve. It is very pretty, but there are no pull outs to stop and enjoy it.


Every day this trip I missed the sunset. We were either driving, or doing something else. I caught the tail end of tonight's though.


Day 6. Checkout day. I hate checkout day. Signifying my vacation has come to an end. Here is another pretty shot of the ocean just outside the room.


And from inside our room.



Before we left the coast we decided to wander around Depoe Bay. Here are a few shots of the bay.



And the beautiful drive through the woods as we leave the coast behind. (DBP Album)


On the way out, we decided to drive around the other side of Mount Hood. (DBP Album)



Which gave us some better views of Mount Hood.(DBP Album)


And also, a pretty darn good view of Mount Saint Helens. Wow! (DBP)


And back in the Columbia River Gorge some columnar basalt.

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Every year we have seen big horned sheep in the gorge, but due to how high the speed limit is, I never managed to get a picture. This year, on the way in, it looked like they were in the same location as last year (but seriously, what do I know?) either way, I made a point of noting the next mile marker. So, on the way out I was prepared as we approached the same area, and sure enough the herd was there. Not the best pictures, but I am thrilled I finally caught some big horned sheep. (DBP Album) Its been a while, but I think it was mile marker 110. So if heading to Portland, keep an eye out at mile 120, leaving Portland 100.


It doesn’t look like much from here, but this is the beginning of Dead Mans Pass. I really HATE this part of the drive, (DBP Album)

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Blue moon just after the pass. (DBP)


I like the grassy steps in the hillside. I imagine this is what lava fields look like after grass grows on them. I saw something like this near Mount Nebo and assumed it was man created. Now I am questioning that as there were a lot of little steps on this stretch of the trip. (DBP)


Blue clouds. (DBP)


The storm clouds made the normally boring landscape of Idaho a little interesting. (DBP)


And Utah even. Through a bug smeared windshield. (DBP)


The wind was kicking something up on The Great Salt Lake. (DBP)

And that concludes the trip. I really, really enjoy that section of the coast but I think next year it is time to move on to a different area. There is a lot there I have yet to see, and may return some day, but I would like to explore some other areas. If I do return to the coast, I am somewhere between Olympic National Park in Washington, or Southern Oregon/The Redwoods. We will soon see. All in all, if you haven't been to the Oregon Coast I highly recommend it. Wonders await at ever corner.