Sunday, September 03, 2017

Fires of Oregon

Fires rage across our state.  Yesterday, the news was that over 100 hikers were trapped between two fires in the gorge at Eagle Creek.  Eagle Creek trail is one of the gorge's big draws and is a beautiful hike in to a beautiful waterfall.  The waterfall has its own dangers as many young folk, jumping from rocks high above the pool below the falls, have been injured or killed.

This time a fire started just a mile out from the trail head, trapping hikers above the fire.  Firefighters were helping hikers shelter in place for the night and then today, are going to lead them on a 14 mile hike between the two fires and out to safety.  They will remember that hike forever I would guess.  I hope all goes well.

Yesterday the smog from all the fires wasn't too bad in the valley.  I went up to feed the cats near Waterloo and decided to try going in the Santiam river there, for a swim.  The water however is icy cold, regardless of the hot summer we have had.  It looks so inviting!  The smoke had moved in by that time, from the south clouding over the sun and stinking the air, so I left, shivering some, from my wet clothes and spontaneous swim.

If you want to go somewhere in Oregon right now you first must check the fire map, to see if roads are open where you want to go.  For instance it isn't that easy to get into the Cascades now from the mid valley.  HIghway 20 is reduced to one lane at the Santiam Pass, above Sweet Home, due to fires.  A pilot car leads traffic through.  It is also a good idea to check the air quality index to see how bad the smoke might be, if you want to escape for a last summer fling.

When I returned the four females Friday, the gray tabby girl refused to leave the trap.  No amount of coaxing or gentle shaking of the trap would get her to leave its security.  Heartland Humane had warned me she is functionally blind, at her spay.  Her eyes damaged likely from a virus years before.  I had seen the clouding over one eye.  Now, with her refusal to exit the trap at her home territory I looked closely at her eyes and saw they were both filmed over.  She couldn't see.  I didn't want another cat to deal with, but I couldn't just force a blind cat out.  So I closed the trap and brought her home.  She's now in a cage in the second bedroom.  She isn't a tame cat but does allow me to apply eye meds twice daily, to add some moisture to those eyes, until I can figure out what to do with her.

Raven too is still here.  She is a lovely young girl, who likes to lapsit and follow me like a dog, which riles other cats, who are jealous, and play like a kid.  I'm trying to find a great rescue to take her in and find her the home she deserves.  I am hoping that will be Felines First Rescue.

I got update photos on some kittens from the Lebanon street colony and it nearly bowled me over in emotion, to see the little Siamese boy I dug out of that junkpile at that house, one composed of rotted boxes and urine and feces soaked clothing, now thriving and loved.

28 cats helped on that street.  With the spay of Baby Girl last week, all that remained are now fixed.  Doobie, one of the two adult ferals Diana took in, is likely the Siamese kittens father, and now even he is half tame and sits very close to Diana.

Doobie now, once full out feral and skinny, when he roamed that Lebanon street, he is happy, content and now getting tame.
Jersey and Cheyenne, two of the junkpile kittens as they were headed out the door to foster.  Check out Cheyenne now, below .  He has a new name.

When I met this little guy, he was living in a horrid pile of rotting urine soaked clothing and junk.  I hand grabbed him fast, along with two others, but two kittens vanished down into the junk.  I got them later though.  He's now so beautiful and loved in his home.  Who's yo daddy?  Well, I think Doobie is.

28 cats later.   It feels good.  This has not only helped those cats, but also that entire neighborhood.

Let's hope the skies clear soon here of smoke and some of those fires get doused out too.


  1. Some world-wide weather moderation would be nice. If it isn't one thing it is another.
    28 cats helped later shouldn't feel good. It is better than that. Much better.

  2. It's so nice to see the after pictures of the cats you helped. They look healthy and happy. Hope the smoke clears soon.