I was going through photos and when I got to this one, I couldn’t remember anything about this view of a back country road. It fell into place when I enlarged the image and it turned into water … this is a branch of the John Day River in central Oregon.
The Dungeness River runs north out of the Olympic Mountains into the Strait of Juan de Fuca. There are no dams and the water is clear (no glaciers in this section of the Olympics). The Upper Dungeness trail runs along the river for the first couple miles before climbing to higher elevation. It is a very pleasant hike, the river cools the air even on warm days.
The Enchanted Valley is on the upper section of the East Fork of the Quinault River valley. This chalet was built back in the 1930’s and has been relocated several times to move it away from the river. There are plans to move it to a safer location … since the river keeps changing its banks. (It’s always interesting in the early summer to hear if the chalet has made it through another winter)
There is no camping allowed in the chalet itself … and I wouldn’t want to share it with all the mice, anyway. The valley has heavy usage with many people either hiking in and back out, or continuing up the valley, across Anderson Pass and down the West Fork of the Dosewallips. One of the easier hikes across the Olympic National Park.
(another image recovered from my Archive file)
This is the North Fork of the Skokomish River in the southeast corner of Olympic National Park. While the river is contained enough in a valley so that it doesn’t have much room to meander and make oxbow lakes and such, it still moves around enough to erode away banks, taking trees and (sometimes) bridges.
The removal of the Elwha Dams drained Lake Mills. One of the concerns was with the huge amount of sediment that had been trapped behind the dams and the impact that would have on the ecology downstream. A lot of careful planning has resulted in a rapid recovery … salmon and steelhead trout have already returned to the river. Not in the huge numbers that once were present … but quicker than many thought likely.
From the photos below (less than a mile below the upper dam), you can see that the river is now running clean and clear.