Wednesday, February 11, 2015

The Last Look?

I know the area now, it's like home.  I tell people about it, what trails they might want to check out, for hiking, about the campgrounds, the mountains, their names and specifics. I tell them about certain huge and beautiful trees.  I tell them about trails carpeted in moss fallen from trees during windstorms.
Sunrise this a.m.

I love it out there.  So I found a sponsor and I went again.

I didn't find any fresh cat poop this time and the stuff I'd found last time is melted from rain.

Some of the food I've left over a week ago, now may be gone.  It's rain soaked some of it.  I replaced it with fresh after taking this photo.  I would say a third of it is gone.  But who knows what ate it and there's so much left, I doubt it was Bella.  More like mice or chipmunks.

On the way up the mountain this morning I passed a guy on a bike, pushing it.  I pulled over and talked to him briefly.  He looked like a transient so it was strange to see him 20 miles outside Sweet Home. It's not a long ride, but it starts going up around mile 50 or 53 or so, right in there.   I told him he was about 8 miles from the top.

Four hours later, here he comes, pushing his bike.  He made it, at least to Tombstone.   He talks to me but won't tell me his real name.  He has a scar across his nose.  He says he was laying on the couch and would only get up to go get the mail and has been a drug addict and he decided it was time for a change.  So off he went.  He said he was headed to Sisters maybe.  He called it "Brothers".   I told him it was 36 more miles and I told him everything in between where he sat now and Sisters, including another pass to climb.  And it had taken him four hours to go 8 miles up this last one.  I gave him all my power bars, that I get, at 5 for $1 at the Grocery Depot and keep in the car for emergencies.  I had about ten. I was astonished to see him eat every one of them, one right after the other.
The Bike Man

I gave him two bottles of water too.  In the end I left him there, because I was headed home.

I had been there six hours.  I had hiked halfway down to Deer Creek Road.  A trail, only 1/2 mile long, runs from Tombstone Pass down below where Bella got lost when the car went over, in switchbacks down, and comes out at the restroom a quarter mile or so down Deer Creek road. Deer Creek road takes off highway 20 at mile 63.  The Tombstone Pass pull out is at mile 63.6.

Iron Mountain

I took along gifts for the ravens.  I felt I needed to do that.

The crash site farewell

On the way back, I glanced to my left and saw kayakers bobbing along the S. Santiam river.  I raced ahead to find a place I could wait to watch them come and then spotted a car, theirs, pulled out by the fish platform.  I pulled over and waited and was not disappointed.  Here they come, three of with a GoPro.

The Fish platform, taken from the road.

They took out there, as I watched, one guy dripping wet.   I asked how he stayed warm, wet suit?  "Dry suit", he said.  "Oh," I said.

Foster Reservoir is so low there's very little water.  That's where I take my raft, so I hope it fills up by June.

That's all, and I better get.  My cats are very mad at me for taking the day off from serving them.   Oh my am I ever in trouble.

If anybody drives over the pass, let me know.  I'll tell you where that feeder is and you can put some food under it, just in case.  You just never know.


  1. You tried. Nice scenery up there..

  2. Such a beautiful area, it has everything I love, mountains, trees, rivers and rocks.

  3. Yes, WA, I did try. And River, it is absolutely drop dead gorgeous!