Monday, July 17, 2017

A Life of Wonder Below the Surface

Beneath the mirrored surface is a world of life and wonder. It is hard not to stop and lose oneself in the drama playing out in the shallow pools among the rocks and seaweed. Minuscule crustaceans of many shapes and sizes scurry to hide as shadows pass overhead. Sea anemones wave their flower-like tentacles, filtering unseen nutrients from the falling tide pulled by the moon. An armored Mollusk slowly makes its way through this natural diorama of life in the sea nibbling on a garden of green and brown.

Distractions are everywhere in this environment for the angler raised on the cool waters of the mountains. Caddis and Mayflies are foreign here, replaced with a myriad of creatures whose place in the food chain is displayed in flashes or surface splashes as resident salmonids and pinnipeds dine on the abundance. It is a world of violent peace ever changing with the tides and seasons. A place where everyday is an adventure for the residents of this watery world and for interlopers like me.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Looking for a Needle in a Haystack

A year ago I set myself a goal to find and photograph a West Slope Cutthroat Trout in Oregon. While this was not an impossible task as proven by the image above, it nevertheless involved plenty of research of the historical range of this special fish. The many miles of travel and the hours spent studying maps and satellite images of mountain streams finally paid off this holiday weekend. The stars aligned, the conditions were perfect and my goal was triumphantly attained.

While this accomplishment will forever have a place in fond memory, the adventure itself added to my confidence for solo travel on the back roads of Oregon. Again, pushing myself out of my preconceived comfort zones and expanding my respect and love of our great state. We truly live in a remarkable place; a place filled with history, beauty and glimpses of the America we all remember in every small town along those back roads and dusty trails.