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Posts Tagged ‘white pelicans’

“If you see a whole thing – it seems that it’s always beautiful. Planets, lives … But up close a world’s all dirt and rocks. And day-to-day, life’s a hard job.” – Ursula K.Le Guin

This photo doesn’t do City of Rocks justice but it was the best one I took because of being so pressed for time. — Photo by Pat Bean

Adventures with Pepper: Day One

            I took a longer detour than I had expected yesterday when I visited City of Rocks State Park in Southern Idaho on my way to Ogden, Utah, where I’ll be staying for the next few days before the real start of my journey begins.

But I was quite pleased with the shot I got up an osprey hig up in a tree over the Snake River. — Photo by Pat Bean

The reason that it was longer is that a bridge was out, and I had to double back to continue on my journey. It also made me pressed for time because I needed to get into Ogden in time for a party and a play my friend, Kim, had planned for our evening activities.

The City of Rocks is just that. It was a landmark for early pioneers traveling the California Trail. Just as impressive as the jumble of rocks that today are a haven for rock climbers — sadly I didn’t have time to do much exploring or picture-taking – was the City of Rocks Back Country Scenic Byway that encircled the Albion Mountains. And I got to see it twice.

My lack of time was also due to the fact that I had dawdled earlier in the morning, taking Maggie for one last long walk in Lake Walcott, and then spending a bit of time beside the Snake River to watch the parade of pelicans that lazed below the Minidoka Dam. And then there was the awesome osprey that was also hanging out beside the river that stopped me for a while, too.

Book Report: Travels with Maggie has grown to 43,888 words. I got up early and wrote this morning.

Bean’s Pat:  Since my internet connection is acting like a pouting brat who won’t come out of her room today, I haven’t been able to do much blog browsing. So the only Pat the Wondering Wanderer is giving out today is one to me for getting up early and writing, even though I partied until late last night.

Well, maybe also to the crew and actors of Avenue Q, the play I saw at the Rose Wagner Theater in Salt Lake City. I had never seen a raunchy puppet show before, and my friend was afraid I would be offended. I wasn’t. I laughed so hard I almost fell out of my seat. Despite its X rating, the play had a positive upbeat message. I mean how can you get offended at naked puppets, whose bodied ended at their midriffs, having sex.

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“The moments of happiness we enjoy take us by surprise. It is not that we seize them but that they seize us.” – Ashley Montagu

Special Moments  

If there is anything of value that the years have taught this wondering wanderer, it’s how fleeting time is, and how important it is to be ready to catch the special moments that may never come our way again.

Life is not measured by the breaths we take, but the number of moments that take our breath away. Someone else said that first, but I don’t know who, just that it’s so very true.

The Snake River just below the Minidoka Dam in Southern Idaho. — Photo by Pat Bean

The Snake River has been responsible for taking my breath away hundreds of times, from it literally doing that when I rafted its white-water rapid sections – I’ve been in a raft that this river’s flipped and it’s flipped me out of a raft more than once – to the beauty it’s provided me every time I stand by its banks.

I saw my first magpies – we don’t have them in Texas where I grew up – playfully swooping above its waters that flowed through a farm in Glenn’s Ferry, Idaho.

Just a few of the hundreds of white pelicans that cluster on the river below the dam. — Photo by Pat Bean

And I’ve watched osprey dive into its depths in Wyoming and come up with a fish, and bald eagles flying over it in Washington, and hundreds of white pelicans fishing its waters just this summer.

It’s thankful I am to be spending the summer right next to the Snake River, the mother of Lake Walcott State Park where I’m a volunteer campground host. While I can only see the lake out my RV windows, a 10-minute walk puts me above or on the banks of this great river, which began its twisting journey through Wyoming, Idaho, Oregon and Washington at a hot spot in Yellowstone National Park.

From its junction here at Lake Walcott, the Snake will makes its way down to Twin Falls Gorge (where Evil Knievel attempted a motorcycle jump), then continue on through Hell’s Canyon and eventually join the Columbia River.

It takes my appreciation for all the joy its brought into my life with it.

Bean’s Pat: Sun Fire: http://tinyurl.com/bu29s98 One of those special moments that might never come your way again. Blog pick of the day from the wondering wanderer.

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 “Compassion, in which all ethics must take root, can only attain its full breadth and depth if it embraces all living creatures and does not limit itself to mankind.” – Albert Schweitzer

Water gushing down into the Snake River during a release at the Minidoka Dam. -- Pat Bean

Travels With Maggie

The siren letting people downstream know they are letting water out of the dam here at Lake Walcott has been blaring frequently the past few days.

The lake’s high, the irrigation canals are full and the Snake River is flowing fast and furious.

I watched yesterday as the siren blew and the water gushed down from behind the dam. The white pelicans floating near where the water splashed as it cascaded down a short incline watched, too.

Occasionally I see pelicans in the lake, but sitting below the falls seems to be their favorite hang out, probably because fish like the oxygen rich spot, too. And pelicans like fish dinners.

Red-winged blackbirds build their nest in foilage growing in the shallow waters along Lake Walcott's shoreline. -- Photo by Pat Bean

The Minidoka Dam here that created Lake Walcott has been around since 1906, and a power generating plant added soon after, giving local farmers both water and electricity. Teddy Roosevelt, in 1909, created the 25,000-acre Minidoka National Wildlife Refuge around the lake, and the state park, which came much later and which is full of families, fishermen, RV-ers, tenters and boaters for the memorial weekend,, is within the refuge boundaries.

While too often someone suffers when man interferes with Mother Nature, this time it seems like it’s mostly been a win-win situation for human and wildlife species alike.

This is  all too rare these days.

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