Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Recreation report

"The coho passage is nearly over, but winter steelhead numbers are looking good. Through Jan. 9, 812 winter steelhead had moved over the ladder. Hydro readings at Willamette Falls on Monday showed flows at 54,000 cfs, the water temperature at 44°, and the visibility low at 1.4 ft."
--Oregon Dept. of Fish & Wildlife Recreation Report

The winter storms just keep rolling in, here in OryGun, but they don't bring anything exciting like buckets of beautiful fluffy snow or frozen skating ponds. Just heavy layers of dark, grey clouds and rain and blustery wind. All kinds of rain. At least seven different kinds. Probably 20 or so types of drizzle, fog, mist, too. That's a lot of drizzle. A few sprinkles and the Californians freak out on the freeways. If "the orb" busts through for a few minutes, everybody goes nuts, looking up at the sun god for redemption. The winter sun is such a mean bitch, though. She usually only pops out for seconds and puts people in a frenzy, resulting in wrecks and fender benders and hour-long freeway delays. If it snows, the Oregonians wet themselves in a fit of panic over "driving in this stuff" and all hell breaks loose then, too.

Well, not ones to get down in the dumps over the missing orb, Californians, 20 kinds of drizzle, and another week of storms in the forecast (though they did promise a 3-hour dry weather window yesterday and by golly the forecast was right -- even saw "it" for an hour or so. It touched my face. I nearly wept with joy) we headed back out to the clothing optional beach on the weekend. Yep, optional. Even in winter.

A thin mist floated above the water. The rain came down in tiny droplets. Shots fired by duck hunters broke the silence now and then. There was no wind. There were no people, except for an old hippie with a metal detector -- in jeans. But on the way back, we noticed the denim was gone, revealing a pinkish white creature with a metal detector wandering up and down the shore.

We ran, did cartwheels, skipped, looked at birds, posed for the 10-second timer, played on logs. We took a health dip in the 44-degree Willamette, which felt like minus 10 degrees on my bare belly. We hugged and kissed and told winter to fuck off.

We warmed up in the truck with Lyle Lovett and John Prine, sipped some whiskey and went for a hike in search of winter birds and fern spores and snowberries.
Then we went home and ate catfish....that we bought at the grocery store.


Erobintica said...

Ah, yes, OryGun winters. Laughed at 20 different types of drizzle. It's one of those kind of days here, though with lower temps, but not low enough for snow. In the middle of a "January thaw" - which only means that winter's only half over. Sometimes I miss the wild Pacific storms - nothing like em here.

BadAssKona said...

There is good and beauty and joy in every day. You and I live by that creed. Winter, schwinter...let's go have FUN!!

WV: "prosind"
Def: What we "pros" did, last weekend.....

Gina Marie said...

Hi Robin,

The drizzle madness is pretty funny. There's only been one tiny snow flurry this year but there is a snowshoe race at the mountain this weekend, so we'll get our kicks up there. I hope Spring comes for you faster than you ever thought possible :-)

Gina Marie said...

Hey BAK, First & 10, do it again! We like it!

Craig Sorensen said...

Awesome reflections on defying winter.

I had to laugh at your comment about Californians freaking out at a bit of rain. When I first lived in San Diego a guy I worked with was looking out the window. "Man, it's really coming down out there."

Basically, it was drizzling. Not sure which of the twenty kinds, but it was a drizzle. :-)

Jeremy Edwards said...

"Man, it's really coming down out there."

LOL! He'd probably been waiting his whole life to get the slightest shred of an excuse to say that. I hope you didn't ... rain on his parade.

Gina Marie said...

Hi Craig & Jeremy....what a weather riot. Wow, the poor Californians are really getting hammered today. Now I feel bad -- hope I didn't jinx them with my drizzle-talk. There's basically only one kind of flood.

Happy Thursday y'all!