Pictures for Pam, Day 208: Cape Arago Lighthouse in a Double Dedication with Marie-claire Gallet

(+2 insets!) (please view large for a much better view and impact!) Boy, it's amazing how memories blend together and start to fade so quickly. Steve and I have been home for less than a week but I find that remembering specific details on this past trip is becoming a rather muddled affair in many cases. This is EXACTLY why I have been so fastidious about writing everything down. That way we have our memories safe in both written and photographic forms. It's just so nice to go back and relive memories through written accounts. By reading and looking at pictures, more memories come bubbling up to the surface. I just love that. One of the places that we stayed along the Oregon coastline was an RV park near Coo's Bay. Via, we found a wonderful hike to go on and discovered that we could actually get to the trailhead by walking three miles along a path that led directly from our campground! How cool is that?! :D The Sunset Beach to Cape Arago trail led us through verdant, lush and flower-filled forest which was the home to many happy and twittering birds. Every once in a while we would come upon a side trail that would take us out to a coastal view. Each time we were rewarded by incredible beautiful rocky coastlines and crashing waves that mesmerized us. Because we had to tack on six miles onto the official hike of 8.5 miles, the overall distance was too long for us to complete--and we also got a late start--but we didn't mind turning back before we reached Cape Arago. Every moment was so rewarding to us and this hike would be one of our favorite highlights of the trip! Today I am sharing a series of pictures I captured on our hike. A prominent feature we saw when we got coastal peeks was the attractive Arago Lighthouse. Both of us took lots of pictures whenever we got the opportunity. My main picture shows how far out the lighthouse is on its peninsula and shows the lovely landscape and watery vista all around. I am also sharing a couple of other views--one is a closer view and the other one shows the rugged coastline as well. I hope you enjoy the show! :) Pam, I see that you are a lighthouse fan too! I was delighted to discover that you love them so much, in fact, that you painted one as part of a Christmas card for your husband ! That's just so cool! What a marvelous design and a perfect idea. Red and white are often the color of light houses so that couldn't be better. Nice job, and what a treat to enjoy! Here's hoping that your day has been a good one! :)

Pictures for Pam, Day 209: HFF: The Stout Tree in a Double Dedication with Marie-claire Gallet

(+2 insets!) (please view large so you can actually see me!) :D Steve and I have been so busy since we got back from our trip a week ago. We've been working around the house cleaning up, preparing for our next trip and doing errands, all of which have taken my time from processing pictures. However, the past couple of days have been a lot more relaxed so I've been able to focus on a few folders that were really important to me. Specifically, I wanted to make sure I attacked the pictures I took at Jedediah Smith State Park. This lovely place was the first stop on our Oregon Coast trip--though it's not actually on the coast itself but instead a mere five miles inland. Within Jedediah are a number of specific groves, one of them being the magnificent and popular Stout Grove. That was where we decided to enjoy Jedediah's wonderful redwood forest. Stout Grove was awesome. Although it rained before and after our visit, for some lucky reason the downpour stopped about 15 minutes after we arrived and started up again as we headed out a couple of hours later. What are the odds? I would say that they were in our favor because throughout our trip we were blessed by this happening over and over again. We dearly appreciated the amazing luck we had and made the most of our rain-free opportunities! We hiked on lovely trails covered in pine-needles, making our passage a silent one. Far above us we could hear birds twittering and sometimes we'd see one fly by and land on a branch just out of our view. We admired the incredibly lush ferns that were absolutely everywhere, as well as the flowers and other plants along the way. The smell of a redwood forest is rich and instantly recognizable and I reveled in the aroma I knew so well as a kid up at our summer cabin that was nestled in a redwood forest too! Here and there, immense toppled trees lay on the mossy floor, slowly turning into the earth below them. The forest was deeply shadowed and felt very reverent and special. Talking in low tones, we passed only a few other people, all of whom were as awe-struck as we were; they too recognized and honored this ancient forest and its rare trees. We wanted to find the most famous giant of this grove, "The Stout Tree". It was named after Frank D. Stout, a lumberman whose wife donated the tract of land which is the home of Stout Grove. This incredible behemoth is one of the tallest trees in the world at 340 feet and 16 feet in diameter. It is the tallest tree in Stout grove and when we found ourselves standing before The Stout Tree, it literally took our breath away. My picture today was actually taken by my husband, and shows me standing in front of the marvelous Stout Tree. (Since I'd just taken a picture of him in front of another tree and also some other places, he didn't care about having his photo taken and really wanted to take a picture of me in front of it!) :D How convenient that there's a fence here…since after all, today is the day I post my picture for Happy Fence Friday! :D I have also included a fence picture I took within Stout Grove, as well as a picture I took of Steve in front of another truly massive Redwood. Aren't these trees just amazing?! :) (I'll be showing lots of redwood tree pictures in coming days but I don't want to drown you in them all at once!) Pam, I can't remember if you mentioned visiting a redwood forest while you were in California…I think you might have told me you'd gotten to visit Muir Woods? What a place. It's just nutty there, so many incredible beauties to see. What I love about these trees is that they really let you know how small and insignificant you are! Also, it seems that the older the tree, the more I feel their spirits, so walking among these giants is like communing with family that I deeply respect and love. If only we knew how to communicate with them but they're just so different. Maybe someday someone will figure out how to do it. What I would pay to hear their stories. BTW, I've been really enjoying our chats and you've been on my mind so much today! *BIG, BIG HUGS TO YOU MY DEAR!* Explored on 6/7/19; highest placement, #2.

Pictures for Pam, Day 210: Coo's Bay Sunset Through Tees in a Double Dedication with Marie-claire Gallet

(+1 inset!) (please view large for the best impression!) :D What a day! Finally I have a moment to sit down and it's after 8pm! Sheesh! So much to write though, so let me get this new novel written! :D The excitement of today began last night, actually. Every evening we watch an hour of a movie or an episode brought to us via Netflix. Night before last we'd finished watching the first season of what turned out to be a fantastic sci-fi show called "The Expanse." We'd need to start something new except...I had a plan. We're leaving on our next RV adventure in a few days and I'd been dropping hints about fishing but Steve apparently wasn't tuning in. Fact is, for all but the past couple of months of our relationship, Steve has been totally uninterested in fishing. He had an issue with it, but primarily with folks who catch and release because he thinks it's horribly cruel (I agree). Those who fish and actually eat the fish or catch to sell the fish are fine but because he loves fish (as divers and self-appointed ambassadors to the sea, we both love and respect marine life), the idea of catching, killing, cleaning and eating a fish was totally out of the question. I respected his feelings on the subject and didn't try to change his mind. We both feel that it's a person's right to choose not to do something they don't like. However, that being said...I love fishing! What fun it is! Throughout my teen years until I was about 16 or so, I went fishing almost every weekend up at our summer cabin. The resort community where our family's cabin resided put on a couple of fishing contests every year, and every single year I'd invariably with first or second place in several categories—Biggest Bluegill, Most Bluegill Caught, Biggest Catfish, Most Catfish Caught, and sometimes I'd get lucky and catch a winning Carp too. My brothers also fished (except my oldest brother, he couldn't care less about fishing!) and both Brian and Scott vied for the top place in the Bass and Trout categories. Once we stopped going up to the cabin, I stopped fishing and life went on. I never thought about it. When I met Steve, it was fun telling him about my fishing history and it was ok to me that he didn't like the idea. I'd had my day in the sun with angling and was content without it. But a funny thing happened. We got an RV. We began going on camping trips. And everywhere we went, we saw folks fishing and going out in boats. I didn't say anything about it...but one day out of the blue, Steve said to me, "You know, I think I might want to change my mind about fishing." We talked about our feelings regarding fish and he thought that maybe he could handle killing a fish and ultimately eating it. I was amazed because it's a big step to get to that point. In fact, even though we love eating poultry, beef and pork, we absolutely could not raise these animals, have them killed and then eat them. We are very cognizant of the origin of every bite we eat but we love these animals too much to kill and eat livestock that we actually know. It's too close. Fish are different. They are different enough that even though they do have a variable amount of intelligence, it's not a hard task to distance yourself from feeling destroyed over the thought. I have killed plenty of fish in my young days of fishing and even though it's not fun, it can be done quickly and humanely and then you have a meal to eat! Which brings me to an admission: when I fished as a teen, I never ever ate my catches! (My parents did!) At that age, the only fish I'd eat was tuna from a can, mixed with plenty of mayonnaise and made into a sandwich or casserole. We all know that canned tuna really isn't like a normal "fishy" fish, and that's the only reason I'd eat it. Other than a bit of catfish sometimes in my 30's, I wouldn't eat fish for years until I met Steve. My ex tried to get me to eat raw fish in sushi but his attempts to shame me into it weren't exactly a technique that would have a chance of working. Then I met Steve. Soon after we met he took me to his favorite sushi restaurant and had me try hamachi. To my utter disbelief, I *LOVED* it. Sushi soon became my favorite food and at the same time, Steve took me to seafood restaurants and introduced me to different kinds of fish that I almost always loved. These days we have sushi on special occasions and we will pick up a lovely steelhead trout about once a month. We adore fish and are hopeless trout junkies. Bass is lovely too but too pricey usually, as are most of our favorites. Which brings us back to camping in our RV and our next adventure. We'll be staying at several lakes for up to 5 days each and I couldn't stop thinking about fishing and what Steve had said. However, I wasn't making a big enough noise apparently. So last night, instead of watching Netflix, I suggested we watch a series of videos made by the Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife. They explained everything you'd need to know about how to catch trout, including what to buy, how to get set up and even exact techniques. Steve loved the idea so much that we not only watched the entire series last night, we got up early this morning and went all over the place to look at fishing gear! We are now the proud owners of two new poles, really nice reels and everything we need to go trout fishing on our trip!! HOORAY!!! We are so excited! The idea of catching our yummy trout dinners has us bouncing up and down! I am so happy that Steve is excited too. We can't wait to try out this new fun activity together! :) Ok, today's photo is another view of the amazing sunset that Steve and I photographed when we were in Coo's Bay. It was the first picture I took as we arrived on the beach and I loved the way the sun was shining through the trees. I am also including an inset, which is an archive picture I posted years ago when I had my older camera. Steve and I went to Ashland, about 40 miles south of us, to photograph the splendor of autumn at Lithia Park. I found this amazing mosaic artwork as we entered the park and just loved the detail. It's a trout! How perfect to share for today! :) Pam, do you like to go fishing? It really is such fun and so exciting. I can't wait to catch and cook our own fish...what about you? Is that something you've ever tried? Anyway, my thoughts are on you right now...and I'm hoping you'd doing well today! *BIG HUGS*!!! Explored on 6/8/19; highest placement, #1.

Nanaimo Harbor Stroll (+12 insets!)

(+12 insets!) (view large to see the cool views of this pano!) (Please scroll down to "Black Frank" and Today's Pictures" for information about the insets) I'm finally ready to continue with my trip reports from our 5-week adventure up to Vancouver Island and back! Again, I'd like to say thank you from the bottom of my heart, to all of you, for your visits, favorites, comments, and support. There really is nothing that feels so good as being part of a community like the one here on ipernity. You are my internet family and I love you all! *BIG HUGS* A Short Stay in the Nanaimo "Hub" of our Vancouver Island Trip Our campground at "Living Forest RV Park" was located just a few minute's drive from the lovely and popular oceanside town of Nanaimo, centrally located between the north and south of Vancouver Island. Unfortunately, we weren't able to book a 5-day stay there and with just three days, our visit would have only one full, "relaxed" day. The day we arrive at a campsite is usually eaten up, unless it only takes a very short time and we are able to get situated quickly without stress. Setting up the RV, winding down from the drive, getting meals together, figuring out the lay of the land and getting comfortable with the new "digs" really sucks up the hours and before we realize it, the whole day is gone! That's how we figured out that staying for five days at each location is a minimum for a satisfying visit. We came to realize that even five days isn't enough. When you take away the first and last days, three days are left and though that is sometimes long enough to exhaust the local sights, it doesn't leave enough time to truly kick back and relax. We need more time to allow ourselves the freedom to do things like wander around a town or natural area just looking for artistic photography—not travel highlights—or sit and read a book, play a video game, take a nap, or do nothing at all. With "just enough time," we were constantly reminded that we need to use our time wisely and make sure not to miss an important local sight. This was maddening to both of us. Steve wanted to just chill out but he couldn't. I wanted to creep around with my macro lens but I couldn't. Not without feeling terribly guilty that we should be making the most of the short time we had available to us. Knowing that we may never visit this area again was not something either of us took lightly. This caused considerable stress and unhappiness and changed the whole way we'll be traveling in the future. Our next trip will be open-ended with long stays at each place. We may not see as many places but each destination will be wonderful and satisfying! Happily it didn't take very long to get to our campsite from Malahat. We were able to get ourselves set up and relaxed enough that we decided to drive into town and take a walk along its lovely harbor, taking in the sights along the way. The cloud-filled but comfortable day was perfect and we were delighted by the incredible views as we walked along. A popular paved path stretched from their harbor, along the shore to the heart of the town and we enjoyed the views and the salty breeze that accented our stroll. Black Frank, Admiral of the Fleet At one point along our walk, I noticed a very festive-looking sculpture of what looked to be a very happy pirate, titled "Admiral of the Fleet." I took pictures of the plaque along with the beautifully detailed bronze sculpture and looked forward to learning more about this "Black Frank" pirate person once I got home. When I processed the pictures for our Nanaimo stroll, I arrived at the pirate pictures and eagerly dove into the internet to learn more. What I discovered warmed my heart, brought a tear to my eye, and made me wish dearly that I could have met the man so affectionately known as "Black Frank." You'll see several insets for Frank Ney—two of his memorial sculpture and one of the plaques. The plaques had the following text on them: (This placard was small and set at the foot of the sculpture) Dedicated by the citizens of Nanaimo in memory of Frank James Ney (1918 - 1992) Affectionately known as "Black Frank" "8 Bells and All is Well in Davey Jone's Locker" (This plaque was larger and set off to the side; you'll see this one as an inset) Admiral of the Fleet (Frank Ney - May 12, 1918 - November 24, 1992) In 1967, Black Frank" helped launch the now famous Loyal Nanaimo Bath Tub Race. The colorful pirate costume was worn to promote Nanaimo as the Sunporch of Canada, Jewel of the West, and Bathtub Capital of the World! A Lifetime of Service Mayor of Nanaimo 1967-1984 and 1986-1990 Member of Legislative Assembly 1969-1972 "Freeman of the City of Nanaimo" B.C.'s Tourism Ambassador Honorary Chief First Nations of Nanaimo Killer Whale Q'Un Lhanumutsun Active Member of many organizations Notary Public and President of Nanaimo Realty I was able to locate videos of Frank Ney, as "Black Frank" , which show what an incredibly silly and fun-loving character he was. It is obvious why he was so beloved by his city. You will laugh when you see him being a pirate and paddling one of his bathtub boats! What a loon! And in regards to being the "Bathtub Capital of the World" and home of the Loyal Nanaimo Bathtub Race, here's a video which celebrates the 25th anniversary of their races . Interestingly, they allow the bathtubs to be set inside another boat so they are less tippy and able to gain more speed. Today's Pictures My main picture today is a panorama of the harbor and view towards the main part of town. There are lots of insets too, including those of "Black Frank". You'll see the harbor, panoramas of our walk along the water, tagged geese, a lovely wood rose I couldn’t resist taking a picture of, and an image of a seagull who sadly has a starfish stuck in in its mouth. We really hoped that it would be able to prize the starfish out of its beak before it starved, the poor thing. Pam, I remember thinking about you as we walked along and we were sure that you would have really enjoyed this pretty stroll. Everyone that we passed by was happy too—it was a wonderful place to be and obviously very popular for folks who work and live in the area. I've always wished we could be next to a path like this for bike riding but the closest one is about 15 minute's drive away. Since that means loading up the bikes in the truck we don't go often, though the Bear Creek Greenway ride is incredible. It takes us about 17.5 miles from Central Point on a picturesque trip down to the town of Ashland where we always stop at our favorite coffee shop and also grab a bite to eat at one of the many wonderful restaurants there. Another 17.5 beautiful miles back to our truck to complete a most satisfying bike ride. What fun! Paved pathways are a natural favorite for us! Hope all is well with you my dear! *BIG HUGS* Explored on 1/16/20; highest placement #8.
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