Elkton is located right on the banks of the Umpqua River,
and the city has a small park, the Alfred S. Tyson Park, that provides easy
access to the river.Being late in the
year, and without rain, it’s easy to walk around on the rocks and in my case
look for birds.This first photo is of a
Common Merganser and a Spotted Sandpiper. The Sandpiper invaded the Merganser’s
area for just a quick second and I was lucky enough to capture moment.
Kerry & Debby Kliever are two campers we met while
volunteering at Collier Memorial State Park this summer.We were surprised at the time to discover
that their home was in our neighboring town of Sutherlin.We promised to get together when we were both
back home, and today that came true.Check out the Trip Journal in Cascade Ramblings for the rest of the story.
This is a European Starling that I photographed during my
bird walk this morning out to the Elkton Community Education Center. European
Starlings are an invasive species that has spread through the United States,
and although they have some admirable plumage, they are quite a nuisance. They
can make a real mess nesting around homes, and their sheer numbers can pose
a problem for farmers. The problem for birders is they make a wide variety
of weird sounds, including mimicking other birds.Which leads me to the scripture lesson for
the day: “Beware of those who mimic, they are not to be trusted”. --the Gospel by James.
As the weather turns a little drearier, lingering in my den
in the morning seems to make more sense, and as I always have more work to do
with photos and Cascade Ramblings it all works out just fine.This morning I’ve added a White Pine Butterfly to the Critters of Cascade Ramblings. It’s one I took while at Collier
Memorial State Park this summer.Interesting
enough, the very first Critter of Cascade Ramblings was a butterfly, a California Tortoiseshell, taken on a hike into Marion Lake in April of 2001. There are now
a dozen butterflies in Cascade Ramblings and an easy way to see them all is to
enter the word “Butterfly” in the search box in the Critters section. This will
give you the list of all 12 with a nice thumbnail photo of each butterfly.
This is a photo of a Fox Sparrow I took this morning during
a birding trip we took to Plat I Reservoir near Sutherlin. No, this is not a
video, in spite of the fact that the white triangle on the bird’s breast looks
a lot like a start button for a video. It is mealy a strange pattern in the
Jeanette, Buster, and I went birding this morning with the
South Lane Birders at the Row River Nature Park, formerly called the East
Regional Park, in Cottage Grove.It was
a good couple of hours of birding, identifying two dozen different
species.The best photo I took
was of this male Wood Duck.The significant
thing here is that he is already sporting his bright breeding colors which he will
wear until early summer.Fall is that
time of year when I have a tendency to look wistfully back at summer, but Mr.
Wood Duck is a guy already looking forward towards the new season.
Step-son Tony Turino continues to make positive changes to the new
Cascade Ramblings.This week he has
added the ability to add additional photos to the Critters section.In the past I was only able to post two
photos, now I can post four photos.For
example, the above photo of a juvenile Hairy Woodpecker has now been added to
the Hairy Woodpecker page.Before I
could only showcase a male and a female, now I am showing this juvenile plus
another juvenile. This is going to be very helpful in enabling me to show
different plumages of juvenile/adult, male/female, breeding/non-breeding.
We are home in Elkton now, busy with emptying the motor
home, and working around the house and yard in an attempt to get caught up with
our two month plus vacancy. This morning while obliging Buster with his
expected walk, Jeanette and I observed a group of Red-breasted Nuthatches.It took us back to our days at Collier State
Park this summer, where their “yank, yank, yank” from high in the pines was a
familiar sound. Ironically, this is the last bird I added to Cascade Ramblings
while at Collier.In all I added new photos
for over 15 different species during our two month stay. Be sure a take a look
at the new Cascade Ramblings layout, and check the Critters section where you
will find the Critters sorted by date, with the newest appearing first.Click here.
Recent followers of this blog may think that I ramble on all
the time about birds, but I have in years past, had quiet an interest in
wildflowers. This summer I have in fact added five new flowers to Cascade
Ramblings starting with this Common Paintbrush in July and the Pearly
Everlasting in the lower photo that I just took yesterday afternoon.You can easily check these out in the
Wildflowers section of Cascade Ramblings where the default sorting is by date,
so the latest Wildflowers will appear first on the list. Click here.
Today the desires of our heart ran head-first into reality
and one of our hard and fast rules of RV camping. The rule is “we don’t camp
where there isn’t cell service”.We
wanted to stop on our way home and camp on the Metolius River, a place that has
many wonderful memories for us of hiking, fishing, backpacking and camping. But
when we arrived at Camp Sherman mid-day today we discovered there was no cell
service. No cell service means no
Internet, and the Internet is our connection with the rest of the world.We depend on it not only for contact with
family and friends, but almost all of our daily pleasure and work
(cascaderamblings) is Internet based. So, we drove on, and here we are perched
on the summit of the Santiam Pass at the Pacific Crest Trailhead. Cell service
is great, and the price, zero dollars, seems just fine.You may notice the ghost of a pine forest
surrounding the parking lot.In addition
for us there are many “ghosts” of past backpacking trips into the Mt Jefferson
Wilderness from this trailhead. Trips too numerous to mention, but ones that
will surely come to mind as we spend the evening here.
Friend Dan Lawry is shown yesterday during a walk we took on
a section of the Deschutes River Trail in Bend. Dan and his wife Charlene have
the good fortune of living within walking distance of this trail, and lucky for
us they have room for us to park our RV when we come to visit them.My brother Mark and his wife Holly joined us
yesterday on this walk through the Old Mill District, which is an outstanding
mix of modern shopping and recreational opportunities in a gorgeous setting. It’s
a favorite of ours that we always to forward to repeating. See earlier TipJournal.