Wednesday, December 11, 2013

In the Snowy Woods

Bill and I spent Saturday at the property of some family friends of his, in the northern Coast Range. Folks were gathering to "welcome back the Coho," the salmon that swim up the stream there to spawn. The property was beautiful, made even more so by the few inches of new powder snow. We've had very very wintery weather lately, highly unusual for Portland, and had a string of several days where the temperature didn't get over 25 F. When there's moisture in the air and 20 mph winds, that's really chilly! It wasn't windy in the mountains, and the sky was perfectly clear and sunny, but although I was wearing two pairs of wool socks, thermal long underwear, and four layers of long sleeves under my big wool coat, it was still uncomfortably cold when we weren't hiking around or gathered by the fire. We were told later by our host that an hour before we showed up, they measured the air temperature there at 8 F. Even so, six hours spent in the gorgeous wintery woods with a group of excellent people and amazing scenery made for an fantastic day.

The cabin was toasty warm, with big pots of soup and chili and hot cider on the wood stove. All three totally hit the spot after hiking around in the snow for two hours.

We saw three salmon, and other folks saw a couple more- more than the property owners had seen in a few years! They were enormous, for so small a creek. This one was about 2.5 feet long. 

We crossed the creek on this somewhat dodgy cable crossing, which had my feet about a foot off the very very cold rushing water. For some reason I couldn't stop giggling the whole time I was pulling myself across.

Bundled up Bill scanning the creek for salmon.

We thought we would be miserable being outside all day on such a cold day. Instead, we had an absolute blast. 

No comments: