Geology – My Secret Pashion

I love rocks. I love gazing and wondering about the various layers I see on cutouts during drives. I love to postulate on what happened when and why.

For example in central Oregon it is high dessert. There is water in the ground but it’s deep and the top layer is not hospitable for most plant life. However the water that does run through has cut deep canyons over the years.

Through various flooding events and geologic processes the layers are amazing. Most of the top layers are volcanic. Examples of dormant volcanoes can still be seen on the horizon.

Mt Jefferson in the distance.   
Black Butte, Three Fingered Jack, Mt Washington and the Three Sisters.

The top layer in some parts is soil similar to sand and very dusty. You can see above that the vegetation is sparse and short. Sage brush and short pines that have deep roots. This spot is looking towards the Deschutes River and West.

This is the Crooked River and looking East. You can see the different layers of sediment and volcanic events.

This cut on the road down to the Cove Palisades Marina is really interesting. The bottom layer consists of large cobblestones that were laid down during a flooding event of great magnitude. Then this thin layer of gold sediment, probably from a distant event that blew dust or ash into the sky that spread?

The next layer is finer sediment that will crumble if scraped (I did!). You can see larger cobbles every now and then mixed in that larger layer of fine sediment. Then a volcanic event laid down a layer of lava. Then you have the picture below of a random bit of fine sand of a white color. I’m sure some of this is from glacial retreat but I don’t know which. Perhaps the large base layer of cobbles is from a glacier and the finer is from melt water?

You can see both the Deschutes and Crooked River in the below picture. Deschutes in the distance and Crooked front and center. Cove Palisade is the confluence of the Deschutes, Crooked and Metolius Rivers.

This whole area is really flat except for the canyons created by these rivers. It’s such an interesting area.

At this time of year the weather has been dryer than normal and as a result there are several large fires raging. In the picture below the clouds and haze are from the Warm Springs Reservation fire to the North.

And through all this Twitch was tagging along. I got tired of him being spastic on my lap and relegated him to the floor boards.



On Saturday we went kayaking on the Willamette again. We started at the Buena Vista Ferry and took out in Independence. Chris Lande, Nick Lande, Scot Leith, Kris Walker and I, along with Twitch.

We headed to the left of the first island where there were some fun ripples and waves to float through. Twitch still likes to bark and bite at the waves. This earned him a swim. Or six.

It was an overcast day and even rained on us a couple times. I was already soaked from hauling Twitch out of the water so no big deal to me.

We stopped at Rogue for lunch along the river. First time Twitch had been there and he did ok. Barked at a few people but quieted. I did have treats with me for good behavior. 

We saw quite the variety of wildlife that day. We saw a number of Osprey, Great Blue Herons, Green Herons, Kingfishers, a white Heron, Kingbirds, of course lots of swallows and I even saw what I think was a mink! Pretty cute little thing I spotted swimming across the river. It turned around half way and I followed it back to shore because at that point I didn’t know what it was. It came out of the water and bounded off into the tall grass. It looked like a weasel or ferret and after some research I’m pretty sure it was a mink.

We had some excitement after lunch when showboating Chris Lande tipped his kayak and flipped it over. It was a sit on top so no worries and the river wasn’t too deep.

He managed to haul himself back in and Twitch was going nuts about the splashing. Lol.

The sun did come out for a little bit but Twitch managed to go swimming 6 times that day! Needless to say he was shivering and I was pretty chilly too by the end.

Overall I think he enjoys it, though I still have work to do on teaching him to stay out of my stroke zone so I can effectively paddle. I’m considering making or buying some kind of platform for him to stand on at my feet.

Next trip I want to do a little more whitewater without Twitch. 🙂

Kayak Twitch!

He is drinking the lake water. Whining for a half hour will make any dog’s throat dry. Notice how he is dry.

Some dog felt that leaning over the side was a good idea. Twice. Luckily he listens well and didn’t panic. He swam back to the boat where I lifted him out.

Wet, cold pooch.


Double Aww.

We will make an adventure dog of him yet!!


We bought two kayaks! Tarpon 100, which means sit on top 10 footers. We are planning to get them in the water this weekend! Can’t wait!

We had to buy racks for the Subaru, I think Piper is happy. 🙂

Twitch will not be going this time so Kris and I can figure stuff out with the boats before adding spazz butt. However I do have two life jacket options to choose from once the second arrives. The other will be returned.

Oh the fun we’ve had…

We’ve been busy the last few weeks which has been great! Kris scored a 3 day weekend over the 4th of July so we did some fun things. Started Friday with a trip to Portland for a comedy show at 10pm. Funny stuff and had a great time! We went up with Justin and Debbie and despite some annoyances with food and drinks, I think we all had some good laughs.

Saturday we went on a 2 1/2 hour horse back ride up into the Santiam National Forest with Into the Wild Equine Adventures.
I love horse back riding and couldn’t wait for this trip. I haven’t been on a horse in quite a few years and knew I would be out of shape for it. The biggest part of me that is out of shape though are the tailbones that got sat upon the whole trip! lol.. My legs didn’t hurt at all but man, those saddles are not soft!  I rode a Tennessee Walker
which I had requested as my mount simply because I thought she’d be smoother for my back.  However, going up and down small gullys on a trail at a walk does not equal a smooth ride no matter what kind of horse you’re on.  The horse trots/stumbles up and down and you bounce around in the saddle.  Oi vey!  The trail was a walk up the mountain side to an overlook
img_9380and then back down the way we came up. The trip up was a piece of cake, however the slide/stumble down was a bit more difficult. The views,
the peace and the joy of being on horse back were well worth the effort!  I thought for sure my back would hate me, but it wasn’t too bad.

Saturday night Kris and I hosted a campfire at the RV park but no one came. So we got to spend 4 hours together, just sitting around, having a beer and roasting hot dogs and marshmellows over the fire, together.  It was very pleasant and I really miss having a fire pit, though having pre-seasoned, well cut, large firewood was a bonus we didn’t have backhome. 🙂
This is the fire pit, but the picture was taken a week previously when other people did actually stop by.
Couldn’t leave you without a pic of

Sunday we participated in an Uncivil War of cornhole at the RV park.  The winner won a $50 gift certificate to the park and the runner up won a $25 certificate. We were defeated by the champions in the semi final round.  Sounds pretty good eh? Until I tell you that there were only four teams and two rounds. 😉 We all had a great time though and that is what matters.

After that we packed up and headed to Seattle after dropping the dogs off at Scot and Amy’s.  We went up to visit with Chris and Christy in the Seattle/Tacoma area.
This is Fran, their Miniature Pincsher.

Christy made some delicious ribs and after dinner we built up a fire and again, sat around and talked. Way better than sitting in front of a TV imo.

On Monday we went to a coffee shop that has a Jenga game you can play. We got coffees and assorted breakfasts and played Jenga for an hour. We had some pretty spectacular crashes! and a lot of fun.  🙂

Afterwards we went to Des Moines beach on the sound, where Christy was being a volunteer interpreter for the day.
We hung out on the beach for several hours and I took a ton of pictures.
We saw little crabs,
See the little suicidal crab? A hint, he’s to the left of her palm.

sea stars,
a kingfisher
img_9611 and lots of other assorted shore type critters.
It was a gorgeous day and again, had a great time.

This past week I decided to get serious about finding a place to rent. I found a small 2 bedroom house that has a decent backyard and a 1 car garage.  We put in an application on Friday and we hope to know on Monday or Tuesday whether or not they will accept us.  I am torn between wanting them to and not. If they do, great! We’ll move in and have a bit more space.  If they don’t, that means many other places also will not accept us and we should quit trying. If that is the case, then I have a plan of attack for revamping the living quarters a bit and then reorganizing the storage unit so that we can more easily get in and out and find stuff we might want/need.  Like my riding gear so I can take horse back riding lessons for a little while. 🙂

This weekend we’ve been staying at Scot and Amy’s while they went to Seattle to go diving.  It’s been nice to have more space and reclining couches again.  I am definitely not a fan of hard wood floors with dogs (click click click) and the rental has all hard wood floors… but I’ll manage. I’ll coat the bedroom floor in area rugs and just eliminate that issue. 😀

In other news I head to Indiana on Wednesday for a small vacation. I’m so looking forward to seeing my friends and family again!!!  It’s been too long and I have plans already to have dinner with friends on three evenings of the 5 I’m there!  One, granted is at my sister’s house on Sunday, just a relaxed get together cookout.  Can’t wait!!!