Tuesday, September 23, 2014

If vegetation could shout with joy.....

If vegetation could shout with joy, it would!

Until now, I would never consider writing a blog entry about water falling from the sky.  Spending an especially dry summer season amongst the evergreens, however, has changed my stance in that regard.

Today is the first day of Fall...and it is raining.  FINALLY!  In fact, if the forecast is to be believed, we will see over two inches of the wet stuff before the day ends and even more through Monday of next week.  Hopefully this moisture will end some or maybe all of the forest use restrictions that have been put in place to prevent wildfires.

Summers along the south Oregon coast are normally fairly dry, but the rainless season this year has followed an unusual dry winter and spring.  Hopefully, today will begin a period of recovery from the extraordinary dangerous dry conditions.  We'll see.

Even before we began hearing the pitter-patter of raindrops on our little rolling home this morning, we made the decision to forgo our annual pilgrimage to the Arizona desert this winter.  We plan to spend the winter season in Port Orford this year.

We have spent the last three winters in desert brown.  It was time to make a change.  We have stayed on the southern Oregon coast for two winter seasons previously.  This area is called the "banana belt" of the Pacific Northwest for good reason.  Although wet, with a normal annual rainfall of around 72 inches, winter temperatures are fairly moderate with day and night averages only about ten degrees lower than those of summer.

As strange as it might seem, I actually enjoy the strong Pacific storms that frequent the north coast during most winters.  The hurricane strength winds and torrential horizontal rain along the nearby headlands are exciting to watch.  Huge ocean waves blasting shoreline rocks and cliffs provide awesome photo opportunities that I have missed during the past three seasons.  Unless they fail to form, I won't miss them this year.

I finally managed to put some fine Chinook salmon meat on the table last Thursday.  Several hours of trolling on the Coquille River with my Port Orford friend Harry gave me the opportunity to land a very nice 28# female salmon.  The fish was obviously fresh from the ocean and was very tasty on the dinner plate that evening.  In fact, Juanita vacuum packed enough in the freezer for six more meals.

Several wind free days this week have allowed me to make more flights with the new DJI Phantom 2 Vision quadcopter that I have named Komodo after my favorite Starbucks coffee, Komodo Dragon.  I  made a few still photographs from the aerial platform during these flights.

These pioneer gravestones are located at Cape Blanco State Park near Port Orford.

I couldn't pass up photographing this Coast Guard rescue boat from a slight elevation view.  The boat is part of a museum at Port Orford Heads State Park.

I took a couple of still photos over the Port Orford Dolly Dock.  I will resume the recording of video clips of the area after I receive a 2-axis gimbal for my flying machine photo platform.

Port Orford Heads State Park rises just west of the dolly dock.  The haze over the ocean is from inland wildfires in Oregon and Northern California.

We are looking forward to the rainy days ahead.  Juanita is happily working away on her various quilting projects, the Beagles are quietly snoring away in their daybeds, and I am busy with assorted hobby projects.  With fresh water beginning to flow in local rivers, I will join Harry for another salmon fishing trip tomorrow morning.  Hopefully more fresh Chinook salmon will be added to the freezer.

More to come soon...........................

Morning update 9/24.....As of 7 AM PDT we have received 3.9" of rain in the current storm.  We exceeded the forecast...how about that?  Time to go fishing!!!


  1. I'll be interested to hear about winters in Port Orford. I assume you will be staying at the same park?

    1. Judy...we will be staying at the Port Orford RV Village, our current park, for the winter months. We have spent two previous winter seasons here and have enjoyed the coast during stormy weather and in clear breaks between.

      While storms can be fairly intense at times, clear calm days often occur. We have seen several nights below freezing here, but nightly temperatures are usually in the low 40's with daytime high temps in the lower to mid 50's.

      During our 2010/11 winter visit, we had a brief snowfall amounting to about 3" of the wet white stuff that melted within a couple of hours. It was really beautiful along the beach that day. The past three winters here have been fairly benign according to the permanent residents of the park.

      We'll let you know how it all works out this year....

  2. Of course I am sad to learn that my desert friend out South of town won't be there this winter............. Oh well, I'll have to find somewhere else to ride that motorbike on a daily outing.... Have a good winter in Oregon....

    1. We'll provide another "day trip" for you in the future I'm sure Rod. Have a good winter in the sun.

  3. Cant blame you two,we loved port Orford.WE just got back from Richmond va went to my sisters for her 86th birthday had a great time.So look forward to your reports.so enjoyed our visit.God bless Martee-jo and Bob Dawson

    1. We enjoyed meeting you as well Bob. Have a great winter!