Posts Tagged With: trout


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Jim left my house on Thursday to slowly make the drive to Rogue River, where my new house is under construction.

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You can see the berm I had put in to protect hoses that carry well water from my upper lot to this one. It is a huge project because of our serious drought. I have three new soaker hoses, connectors, two new 100 foot hoses and two fifty foot hoses hoping to keep my plants alive during this projected 10 year drought.

DSC06564 (Copy)I made the long drive on Saturday to rendezvous with Jim. Saves me the price of a hotel for the days that I’m here and is a good stop on his way north to Washington.

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The front deck is partly in place.

DSC06558 (Copy)The living room paint is dry, waiting for electrical installation.

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Master bathroom.

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Master bedroom.

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Walking toward the 2nd bedroom/office at the opposite end of the house.

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I didn’t take a picture of the kitchen. I guess I got distracted by this little buck, shyly peeking around the storage shed.

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He settled right in next to construction materials by the fence and looked at us as though we were invading his home site.

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Go away, he seemed to say. And then, he was joined later by a brother who bolted when we got too close. Jim tossed them some lettuce that was getting old. One buck  took a bite and decided he liked grass better.

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We took a walk to my old swimming hole. The water was clear, reflecting sun shining through the trees. This is a year round creek, tributary of the Rogue River.

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We tromped the property to the second  gate and looked back at the house from afar. The former owner told me the property doesn’t flood where I wanted to build my house, but the county wouldn’t allow any other site except the narrow place the old mobile sat. But, a skinny little house will make an easy to maintain retirement home. It is covered with wild flowers in the spring and is zoned farm land. With chickens, a couple goats and a garden;  and steel head and trout in the river, sounds good to me.

Later in the day, I bought  my lighting fixtures. We couldn’t fit them all in my little car, so we’ll go back for the rest today. Got my flooring ordered which will arrive in a week. The cabinets get installed on Wednesday, electrical finished on Thursday, the day I drive back to Murphys. I’ll be making a return trip after my grandson’s graduation.

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In the park, father’s were celebrating their special day by fishing.

A young daughter not quite sure she could see the point in it, stuck it out with her dad. It only takes one catch to make her a believer.

This dad told me he fishes with worms. He likes trout and trout like worms.  He called worms the “old-fashioned” bait.

Comparing this morning’s walk, with the one we took two days ago, was pretty amazing. Both sides of the river was lined with fishermen. Across from us, every 20  feet or so  sat a fisherman on a rock.

Catching  a rock is a problem.  He seemed unsure about how to get his hook unsnagged.  He needed the help of a dad or permission to get his shoes and pants wet.

How nice for a young boy to be  assisted by his “honorary grandfather.” The boy was excited and thrilled about  learning to fish.

These two anglers propped their poles in a V crotch so they didn’t have to hold them.  They looked a bit half-hearted about it. But, who am I to judge?

Now this guy is an entertainer. I think he entertained the fish right onto his line. He said, “Oh, if I’m gonna get my picture taken, I better take off my sunglasses.”  Which he did.

Within seconds he had his fish, and as I took more photos, he said:  “Okay, do I get royalties for my picture?  How about 60% for me and 40% for you since I did all the work?”  I told him absolutely a deal, because 60% of nothing is zero, just like 40% of nothing is zero.

He laughed and offered to give me his fish.  And, I would have taken it, too, but I had “clean out the refrigerator” soup and salad on the menu in  preparation for my returning home.  Jim has many talents but cooking isn’t one of them.

Enjoying the day was what it was all about, even if you are fishing with your sister who went back to camp for something. Dad was sleeping in.

“I’m waiting for my wife.  She is finishing a book she is reading. I come here every year.”

We enjoyed the stroll.  I had a fishing pole in the motor home and hadn’t used it in two years. Jim talked me into donating it to the VFW yard sale back in Ajo.  It has been hot but we are plugged in and have air conditioning.  My time has been spent organizing  stuff to go home. My Navajo horse blanket and Shaman Stick will have to wait for the motor home to make a stop in Murphys next year. And, I read two wonderful books over this week.  Sarah’s Quilt by Nancy Turner, which has been compared to Lonesome Dove. And A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Housseini who also wrote Kite Runner. This book is better. I hope father’s everywhere enjoyed their special day.

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Navajo Lake State Park, NM, is remote, far from any big cities;  a real respite for campers and travelers.  Huge wild lands with a campground siding a soothing river and a second campground seven miles farther near the lake.  No water hookups, a few electrical hookups.  With our solar, we manage very well without electricity as long as the sun keeps shining.  We like the luxury of electric when it is available.

I don’t believe cottonwood trees are native to the area;  they grow prolifically and get huge and beautiful.  Perfect for a campground except their propensity to crack and break in rough weather.

They are blooming and shedding at this time of year. The fluff flies everywhere and makes great nesting material for birds. Pretty, too.

Like most rivers, it dips and spreads; makes little islands. Anglers cast  in the shallows.

Near this friendly swimming hole, evidence of children having painted mud  petroglphys on a rock made us smile.

The trail is an easy walk through the brush and trees with nothing but a few lizards, ants and cottontails for company.

I talked to this man from Santa Fe. He told me he and his wife each caught two pan-sized trout yesterday, but his wife wanted to sleep in this morning.  We saw stream-side evidence of people using (fake) salmon eggs for bait. He claims he gets better luck with worms. And, he doesn’t care whether he catches a fish or not. He just enjoys being out and enjoying the river.  I like that  philosophy.

I spent most of the day packing a my suitcase with my art work “stuff” that I never work with while on the road.  All the best intentions set aside; there just isn’t enough time where I have space to work. I had a bag full of books that I didn’t want to discard.  And, remember those souvenirs of New Mexico for the totem? Two old hub caps from Route 66? Jim laughed, but  I got them in my suitcase.

A restful day.  We took an evening stroll, too, and I got a picture of these two cottontails.


And we had a colorful sunset, the first in  a long while.


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We left Wilsonville to continue scenic Historic Highway 30 with Jim complaining about poor signage. We kept seeing highway 84 East. We finally found the way, only to drive a couple miles and discover that Highway 30 is closed for four and one-half  miles to everything but pedestrians and bicyclers.  The roadway is a state park. The ranger informed us that the tunnel entrance and overpasses were made for Model A’s and modern vehicles can’t get through them.

Here is a picture from the visitors center showing a section of the old road we didn’t get to see.

And, an old photo of the building of this almost insurmountable task. It’s quite a show.

What we did see was pretty spectacular.  The switch-backs  take your  breath away.

The scenery does too.

No water falls on this section, but the hills were abloom. We stopped at several overlooks but the wind was so fierce we didn’t hike very far though there are many trails available.

We covered a short nine miles yesterday and dropped into the visitor’s center. We ate lunch in the parking lot and spent two plus hours viewing the history and learning about the geology of the gorge.  A very worthwhile stop for all travelers.

Unique to this center is an educational showing of several raptors they keep. All have been injured in some way and cannot be released to the wild. The kestral, above is the smallest raptor from the area.

A female red tail hawk has an injured wing.

A male great horned owl is nearly blind and can’t feed itself.

Yesterday, we visited the Bonneville Dam and fish hatchery near the end of the day. It, too is worth a visit. I had never seen a fish ladder and always wondered how they count the fish.

The ladder was built after the dam. No one knew if it would actually work, but the spawning fish took to it right away. Ladders are easier than some of the falls and rapids they have to navigate.  They are provided a resting area that funnels them by windows where counters view them and press a button for every fish they see moving  upstream.

The viewing windows for the public were pretty murky. Various breeds spawn at different times of year. The Chinook spawn is just about over. We didn’t see many fish, but it was fascinating even so. We are parked at the Dalles.

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