Friday, February 22, 2013

A wet, windy day at Wallula Junction

February 22, 2013
Friday,  5:21 p.m.
Today we enjoyed a typical February day in the Northwest: cold wind, low-hanging blue-grey sky with stinging raindrops.
So, Nora and I headed west.
When Walla Walla weather turns dark and wet, we often find clear skies, at the Wallula Junction area, where the Walla Walla River joins the Columbia River.
At the Wallula Unit of the McNary Wildlife Refuge several sandy paths wind 3-4-miles upstream along the WW River, twisting among the big sage and past tree-lined ponds.
We have seen deer, coyotes, porcupines, skunks, otter, jackrabbits eagles, quail, pheasants, owls, wild turkeys, voles, side-blotched lizards (to mention a few of the area’s critters) there over the years.
It’s a good place to walk with Nora in cool, dry weather.
Today, however, the wind and rain followed us all the way.
I had chucked coordinates for several geo-cache sites into my new Garmin eTrex 30 GPS unit. We drove to within a few feet of two sites, but the truck-shaking wind and rain deterred us from traipsing around to find the caches.
I felt a bit wimpy, actually, but I left Nora's coat in WW and didn’t want to deal with a wet dog or to leave her in the truck and have her pout.
So, we headed home the long way looking for herons, pheasants, coyotes and/or deer along the Walla Walla River Valley backroads.

I got one shot of a red-tail hawk and some pheasants in a field and good dark-roast coffee at Touchet, so we enjoyed the trip.

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