Justin and I were itching to get outdoors this weekend so we decided to go camping in the Columbia Gorge area (on the WA side) this weekend. Before I tell you details I just have to say, I am SO glad we had prepared for Portland weather prior to coming here!!
We arrived at the Moss Creek Campground in Gifford Pinchot National Forest after dark on Friday evening in a downpour rain. I drove around the deserted (even of a ranger) campground stopping at each site so that Justin could jump out…in the pouring rain…and see which were NOT flooded. Site after soggy site were practically floating in a muddy mess. I was getting discouraged but finally we came upon the magical slanted site #12!
Because of this great slant, most of the water was running through our site (like a small creek) rather than pooling up in the center. We quickly, or as quickly as we could in the slippery muddy mess, set up our “rain”/sun shelter over the pic-nic table and then our tent in a somewhat padded spot off the site in the woods. I then cooked dinner under the shelter while Justin tied a tarp up over our tent to doubly protect us from getting wet. (I get cranky when I’m wet and cold…doesn’t everyone??)
This picture gives you an idea of what it looked like that night:
…After dinner Justin and I sad in our chairs on the pic-nic table under the shelter and read our books before bed. Having that shelter along with our rain jackets, rain pants and waterproof hiking boots made we so thankful!
The next sleepy morning we woke up to it only sprinkling We went on a day hike up Dog Mountain. It was about 6.9 miles with a 2,828 ft climb. There was a smaller mountain top that you get to just before Dog Mt that they call Puppy Mountain–isn’t that cute?! There were great views along the way of the gorge and the nearby mountains. The forest, as always, was a mossy jungle! –Really so amazing to see each time! Justin will have to post his moss pictures later, but here are some of mine.
If you ask me, Puppy Mountain had a much better view than Dog Mt did. Although the trail between Puppy and Dog Mt was outstanding. The side of the mountain that we were traveling on was windblown bear of trees so we could see the gorge the hole time. In the spring and summer that part of the path is covered in wild flowers! –We’ll have to go back to see that!
The morning rain held off until just about the moment we reached the top of Dog Mountain. Luckily on the way back down we were mostly under trees so besides the fairly frequent slip, slide, or skid on the wet path, the rain didn’t bother us much. That night sweet Justin made a lovely fire that we watched from underneath the dry cover of our shelter. (The reason why we went to Moss Creek Campground rather than another one I originally made reservations for was because the other one didn’t allow us to have fires. I insisted that we stay in a campground that would allow fires. –and then it rained )
The next morning I was awake at 2am and up prepping breakfast and taking a “shower” under a cold faucet pump by 4am. –The rain was SO loud on the tarp above our tent that I couldn’t get much sleep. Needless to say, we had a great breakfast at 7:30am when I woke Justin up…by then I was VERY hungry…and set off for our next adventure.
Long story long…camping in the rain isn’t bad if you have the right gear.Read More
Things I have learned so far in Portland:
- Rain isn’t that bad when it’s not pouring
- It’s a lot easier to be home sick when it’s raining
- Not having a job doesn’t have to be as miserable as last time I was in this boat…I finally have time to do artwork!!
- A whole bottle of wood glue DOES come off of wood floors AND carpet
- Vineyards are great sources of art inspiration
- Remembering to put money and a license in your wallet, instead of just a Starbucks card helps you pay for things
- Fresh flowers in the house DO make me feel better
I’ve been scheduling my “work” days with job searching, artwork creating, exploring and researching the area for fun things to do.
I’m in the process of creating a webpage/blog for my artwork so I’ll keep you posted for that. It’s so exciting!! I’ve never had a page of my own
I created this piece yesterday:
Hopefully this will be one of many in this new “Fruit” series. –Justin’s idea…brilliant!Read More