Monday, September 5, 2022

Late summer in the PNW wilds...

Here we are, it's Labor Day. For many that means the end of summer. I'm not one who thinks that way, but I do understand it means my barefoot, open-window, sun-filled days are dwindling. In recognition of that sad fact, today I wanted to look back at some of our nature-filled adventures over the last month or so. First up a visit to the Oak Grove Fork of the Clackamas River, just below Timothy Lake. I was wandering about when I spotted these skunk-cabbage leaves, lush leaves signaling a stream.

At the opposite end of the spectrum, a bit horsetail dried-up and making an interesting skeleton.

Late in August we made a trip up to the Ohanapecosh River, on the southeast side of Mt Rainier. Andrew fished there last fall and had so much fun that he wanted to return. There's Mt Rainier peeking out over the closer mountains as we made our way up to the park.

Being a life-long resident of the PNW I was thrilled to finally visit Mt Rainier National Park. It was long over-due.

That's quite the foundation don't you think? A restroom building at the Ohanapecosh Campground.

We didn't camp, but visited the campground for the excellent river access. This rugged table was just outside the ranger's living quarters which I "mistakenly" drove by while exploring.

The visitor's center had some fabulous old murals.

And of course I had to read all the personal messages at the campground.

Including the paper plate poetry.

The water was beautiful.

I hiked up to the hot-springs.

Yes that's it spilling over the rocks...

...and contributing to lush green growth.

However these were not your typical "soaking" style of hot-springs.

Instead they were more of a gooey-oozing kind of hot-springs.

There are happy ferns and moss near the streams.

And of course lots fungus...

I even spotted one of these in the wilderness! (no, it's not ours—sadly)

We stayed at the lodge in Packwood, WA, and enjoyed the company of this guy, his mom, and a few sisters—or so we're guessing.

Spotting several patches of Goodyera oblongifolia out in the forest was a highlight of the trip for me.

Such a gorgeous plant.

I thought this bark was part of a bird when I first saw it.

And from a distance these branches looked a little like deer antlers.

Fast-forwarding a bit; the first half of this Labor Day weekend I was up in Spokane visiting family and we made a trip over to Post Falls, Idaho. This damn is on the Spokane River as it passes through Falls Park. 

As you can see not much water was allowed over.

There was smoke in the sky, something we've thankfully avoided for most of the summer!

All material © 2009-2022 by Loree L Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.


  1. Beautiful scenery. Hopefully, your exposure to fire was limited to the pretty red sky and didn't include the smell of smoke. I love the Goodyera oblongifolia, which isn't something I've seen before. It's a long time since I've walked through a bonafide forest...

    1. The air quality was bad, but I couldn't smell smoke. I first saw goodyera in a Portland garden and have been looking for it ever since, evidently they are hard to grow in a garden setting.

  2. I love the stream photo (#10). Were you standing on a small bridge or in the water?
    The smokey air is a sad thing but it gives the photos of the Spokane dam a beautiful color even if slightly eerie.
    Did you save the small "bird" bark and other forest bits for your art?

    1. I was on a bridge when I took that photo, and I did save that bird bark! (I have to admit I started to deny that I make "art" but then decided to just roll with the idea...)

  3. Jeanne DeBenedetti KeyesSeptember 06, 2022

    Great photos! That dam is very interesting looking, not just a big slab of concrete like some others. I love the mottled variegation of goodyera. I had it in my garden for a couple of years, then it disappeared. Not sure what finally did it in. Sure is a beauty. It never bloomed for me but with that foliage, who cares?


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