Woodlands & Sunshine (Oregon) 01-Feb-2022

Our faithful readers know that we make frequent visits to nearby Jacksonville Forest Park. Very frequent. But not so much so to its literally across-the-street cousin – the Jacksonville Woodlands. The trails in the Woodlands are shorter, less hilly, and usually busier than those in the Forest. They are also more of an urban experience as they wend through and around private land and past people’s houses. We’ve gone there only on occasion, mostly to look (thus far in vain) for a rare lily – the Gentner Fritillary. But as now is the absolute nadir of anything wildflower, our goal on this cold, clear, sunny day was simply to log 5 miles (8 km) worth of exercise. Which we did and it was good. 😊

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Hiding in the Forest (Southwest Oregon) 08-Dec-2020

Not Jacksonville Forest Park, again?  Don’t you ever go anywhere else? Well, yes, we have and we do and we will.  But right now doesn’t seem quite like the time to be wandering the countryside breathing the virus-laden air of freedom. So, while the park is a popular destination, it’s pretty easy to find solitude on the 40-miles (64 km) of trails that weave across its 1,080 acres (437 ha). Today’s journey involved established trails, exploring a piece of old road that I’ve been curious about for awhile, and some dirt roads favored by dirt bike riders. The LovedOne sat this one out in favor of at-home yoga. 🙄

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Madrones in the Abstract V (August 2020)

Natural processes create a seemingly infinite variety of abstract patterns in and on the bark of the Pacific Madrone (Arbutus menziesii), Southwest Oregon’s signature tree. So, from the heated, sweaty embrace of high summer, here are more selected images from the bark of these endlessly fascinating trees.

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A Walk in the Woodlands (Oregon) 18-Mar-2020

Social distancing has become the mantra of this new era we’ve entered (hopefully temporarily). From the chaos and heartbreak brought on by the Big V, hiking seems to have emerged as an acceptable – nay extolled – way of getting out of the house while still maintaining one’s distance. We just wish hiking’s moment had arrived under happier circumstances. We’re fortunate to: (1) like hiking and (2) live in a small town surrounded by vast expanses of parks and forests and wilderness. These provide ample opportunities to be out there without ever getting too near (or even seeing) another person.

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Jacksonville Forest Waterfalls (Oregon) 10-Apr-2019

For the past several days, we’ve been trapped inside by an atmospheric river of moisture coming at us from somewhere near Hawaii – weather like a huge spilled parasol drink. Rainfall records fell. Reservoirs filled. Spillways were tested. Roads sank. Communities flooded. Snow melted. Our sump pump strained. Our hearts yearned for the searingly dry days of summer. 😎 And then we were granted a brief respite – not a long or fully sunny one but at least a dry one.

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