Friday, June 21, 2013

June 21, 2013

Lick Creek Flowers and North Fork Umatilla River Wilderness Area (6-21-13).

I worked up 60 or so photos from yesterday's stroll along Lick Creek Trail, in the North Fork Umatilla River Wilderness area with Nora the Schnauzer.
"Worked up" means that I looked at them in Photoshop and cropped, added light, dark or contrast to them as I perceived their need.
That strategy allows me to view the photos with some attention to detail. Most of them may not need the level of Photoshop work that I know how to apply. But I select some to  work-up and set them aside as worthy of posting on the or the web sites.
And, usually, I print several of those selected, and some of those I have taken to Darrah's in Walla Walla to be sold, although none have done so in the two months of that gold-digging effort.
This time, as I worked up the photos, the sense of been-there-done-that grew stronger and stronger.

A quick look back at the posts on the tripper site revealed that I posted flowers and scenery from the exact same trail one year and seven days ago.
And I felt some pride in the sharp, colorful and interestingly composed images. Then I felt some anxiety that the 2013 images may not measure up to that 2012 batch?
Well, at least they are more recent, and the day spent on that trail with Nora felt good. We had strong, chilly winds, especially when we stood on rocky cliffs with the wind in our faces and when we crossed that high, rock-ribbed ridge.
Dark clouds rushed across the sky with a an occasional break that allowed a few seconds of sunshine.
I could not have derived better weather for a walk with the dog.
I watched the open slopes with some care in case deer, elk or black bears meandered from the thickly timbered draws to browse in the open.
Nary a one did that.
The flowers, however, burst from the rocky ground of the slopes and along the wet wooded paths of the draws with colorful blossoms: Clarkia, wild onion, Oregon sunshine, sulphur lupine, red columbine, golden pea, big-headed clover, wild hyacinth, heartleaf arnica, arrowleaf balsamroot, stonecrop, oarleaf buckwheat, upland larkspur, ninebark, wild rose, rock penstemon and numerous blooms that I couldn't find in my "Wayside Flowers of the Pacific Northwest" by Dr. Dee Stickler although I perused it carefully, again, when I returned home.

Anyway, Nora and I had another pleasant day. Perhaps we both especially enjoyed it because of Nora's recent two-week battle with stomach worms caused by stuffing herself with Mormon Crickets during a long day's trek in the Juniper Dunes Wilderness.
Today is another cool, cloudy day that would be perfect for stalking lizards at the McNary National Wildlife Refuge's Wallula Unit, at Wallula Junction.

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