April 2014May 2014 June 2014

05/30 - Dungeness Spit at Low, Low Tide

We've been having some really low tides at the Dungeness Spit lately, so there's been a lot of beach to walk on. There's lots of sand, and that made for good footing. Who knows? We might make it out to the lighthouse if we keep at it. We'll see what the next low tide brings.

The view out from where we turned around

The view back


A sea duck

A view of the spit from above

Salal flowers

More flowers

Keywords: dungeness spit, tides

05/28 - Port Angeles Farmers' Market

It really is spring. Everybody seems to have salad fixings and other greens. We've even had our first asparagus and strawberries. One newcomer is Betsy Wharton who is selling pickles, sauerkraut and pickled vegetables. We tried some of the samples and were quite impressed. You can try her kraut with the bratwurst at the Misty Mountain Meats stand.

Nash Huber had strawberries.

Family Farm salad fixings

Johnston Farm lettuces and the like

The local library

Spring Rain Farm is looking green too.

Betsy Wharton's pickle stand

Also sauerkraut and other vegetables

Keywords: johnston farm, nash huber, spring, farmers market, spring rain

05/26 - Lake Angeles Trail in Bloom

The trilliums are passing, but the Oregon grape is in bloom along with the pacific dogwood, tiarella and a few other flowers. This is the second wave, but it is coming right along. We've made it past the half way point to the lake, but we have a good bit of getting in shape ahead of us. Still, the high country beckons, so next time, excelsior.

We aren't sure what this is, but it's pretty.

Some latter day trilliums

Mahonia aka Oregon grape

Wild water at the crossing

More wild water

Pacific dogwood

... and more dogwood


... and more tiarella

New growth on the salal almost looks like flowers.

A sylvan collage

Keywords: flowers, high country, oregon, trillium

05/21 - The New 17 Pound Carbon Neutral Restoration Hardware Catalog

To us, Restoration Hardware is Desperation Hardware. They are a bit pricey, but now and then they are the only supplier of a certain item at the desired level of quality. This has put us on their mailing list, so today we received their new catalog packet, a 17 pound stack of catalogs all printed on heavy stock and held together by the same plastic they use when shipping tractor parts. It's quite a piece of work, and it claims to be carbon neutral, though who knows what effects it might be having on the local dark matter that holds together the universe.

Here it is, warping space and time.

Keywords: art science shopping

05/20 - From the Hurricane Ridge Webcam

We haven't posted any animations from the Hurricane Ridge webcam, but a few days ago, on the 16th, there was some pretty neat footage. For the big version click here, for a tiny phone sized view click here.

The animation

Keywords: hurricane ridge

05/19 - Hurricane Ridge - Spring Report

We drove up to Hurricane Ridge today to watch the snow melt and see if any flowers were in bloom. The road is completely clear, save for the usual runaway rocks. There was lupine in bloom at one of the lookouts, and as we approached the ridge proper, the first phlox of the season was in bloom.

The snow is melting rapidly on the ridge. There were 57 inches of snow at the official snow stake, but there were plenty of clear patches, and there was less snow than we expected on the continuation of the road towards Hurricane Hill. Usually this time of year, there are eight or ten foot high ramparts, but this year they were much reduced. We wandered down the road a bit towards Hurricane Hill, and we're guessing that they'll open the road earlier than usual this year.

Then we explored the parking lot and found them, glacier lilies. The first few were just buds with a touch of yellow, but a few were starting to open. The Hurricane Ridge flower season has begun.

Some mountains

Sunrise Peak

Melting snow

No ramparts here

The road to Hurricane Hill

Glacier lilies

Another glacier lily

A glacier lily starting to bloom

Yet another glacier lily

We aren't sure what this is, but it looks interesting.

Clouds and fog

Keywords: flowers, hurricane hill, hurricane ridge

05/17 - Russian Easter

Yes, we know that real Russian Easter was back in April. Still, there are the Old Calendrists, who rejected the Gregorian calendar, the New Calendrists, who accepted the Gregorian calendar, and the Kaleberg Kalendrists who make up their own calendar.

What does this mean? It means we served buckwheat pancakes with too much butter and salmon roe. We served enemies of the czar, corned beef reubens made with real Russian dressing. We served Trotsky's Bane, tequila, tabikko and wasabi, in oversized cucumber cups. We served Russian dumplings, deadly pelmeni, capable of destroying two years of dieting in one brief sitting. We served home made sausage from an emigre recipe. Russian Easter food is most definitely NOT dietary food.

Then came the Defense of Moscow, our set piece dessert with an oversized Baked Alaska standing in for the premier city of czars and commissars, though not both at the same time. While the 1812 Overture played in the background, we retold the tale, the tale of the Monster Napoleon and his assault on the heart of Russia. Scorched earth, that is, brownies, coffee ice cream and meringe, was all he found after we symbolically burned Moscow to the ground, ironically lighting the flames with French brandy.

Baked Alaska for the Defense of Moscow

Our champagne forest

Home made sausage, pelmeni, blini and salmon - Note how the sheer mass of these dishes has warped the light used in taking this photo.

Enemies of the czar - destroyed!

Trotsky's Bane - Mexican exile and tequila did not agree with him. He probably didn't like vegetables very much either.

Keywords: russian easter, kale, alaska

05/12 - A Short Way Up Barnes Creek

When we head out to the Barnes Creek area on Lake Crescent, we usually just take the loop up to Marymere Falls. This time we were more energetic and went a ways up Barnes Creek proper. There was a lot of water in the creek, and we really got to appreciate just how much of a wonderful rain forest there is in the area.

We also got to see the new bridge over the creek. It's a bit more rustic than the bridge it replaces. It's just a big log with a single railing attached on one side of it, but it looks passable. We might even try it if our general clumsiness and associated fear of heights doesn't stop us. Oh, and did we mention trilliums?

Marymere Falls - We did stop for a look.


More trilliums

One of the side streams

The creek

Rain forest

Another little side stream

Another view of Barnes Creek, blue against the green of the forest

More of the creek

The new bridge

The new bridge has just one railing.

Keywords: barnes creek, marymere falls, trillium

05/08 - Seen In Port Angeles Harbor

We often take the Olympic Discovery Trail west from the Morse Creek parking lot. It's about a mile from the parking lot down to the water. Perhaps another half mile west there are a few rocks out in the Strait favored by the local river otters. There was one out there today, enjoying his catch of the day. While we were watching we noticed an eagle flying low. It dived towards the otter who slid off the rock into the water. The eagle resumed his course west. As soon as the coast was clear, the otter returned to the rock with his fish in his mouth.

Also of note were the snails. We often see slugs along this trail. This is the Pacific Northwest, one of the great slug habitats of the continent, but we see snails much less rarely.

The view from the trail

One of the local river otters, dining al fresco

Either a snail or a shell collecting slug

Keywords: morse creek, otters, slugs, eagle

05/06 - Spring Risotto

To celebrate spring, we had a spring risotto with farmers' market pea shoots and asparagus. We also added some garlic, shallots, white wine and a ton of turkey stock. We've been using haiga rice which is a partially hulled short grain rice. It's a white rice, and it makes an excellent risotto.

Keywords: farmers' market, spring, food

05/03 - Farmers' Market Update

The Port Angeles Farmers' Market has been ramping up for the season. Johnston Farm is back with potatoes, leeks, salad greens and other goodies. Spring Rain has its chickens, greens, and most recently, asparagus. The Family Farm and Nash Huber have been there with lots of green in their bins.

Elwha Apiary is back with their local honey. There's also a newcomer, Pacific Pantry, serving prepared food. The market is not quite fully ramped up, but things are happening.

Nash Huber - We were told that those are the last cauliflower we'll see for a while.

Johnston Farm - Potatoes, greens and more

More Johnston Farm greenery

The Family Farm has great baby turnips. We slice and salt the turnips, then saute the greens.

Spring Rain has vegetable starts, eggs, chickens and rhubarb.

Pacific Pantry is new. We haven't tried their goodies yet.

Spring Rain had asparagus. Spring is here.

Elwha Apiary is back.

A bit about honeybees

Keywords: farmers' market, johnston farm, nash huber, port angeles, spring, spring rain

April 2014May 2014 June 2014