06 November 2014

Day 3 - Oregon and Yellowstone Trip


Get up, wash socks and towels. 

Breakfast a repeat of yesterday.

Once socks are dry, head east to the Columbia River Gorge area.  I have three waterfalls on my list for sightseeing today: Latourell, Angel's, and Horsetail.

The drive out is rather pretty, with views of the Columbia and Washington just off to the left.

Latourell Fall's is easy to find and we immediately head for the upper falls area, if himself's recent ingrown toenail surgery area begins to irritate, we can turn back before the midway point.

The hike is nicely taxing, and gives a pretty wonderful view of plants and water features.  We see and hear very few animals.  Not even birds are in the area.  Strange.

Nursery Tree along Latourell path

Flower on Latourell path

Hollowed out tree 

The falls are lovely, and some of the trees grow so heavy with moss.  Too cool!  Other trees have such unusual growth structure - I wonder what forces caused their curves and direction changes?

Thorny leaf guarding Latourell path (evolutionary biologists believe these types of spikes offer protection from herbivory ... it certainly discourages me from taking a bite)

Interesting tree growth along Latourell path (hurry up with that photograph ... I'm about to slip!)

Upper Latourell Fall's

We have a picnic lunch at the far SW portion of the falls hike.  We made it through all 4.5 or so miles (7.2 km).  With more elevation than these sea level lubbers are familiar, we took a couple photo op breaks to rest our hearts! 

Upon returning to the vehicle, we decide there is only enough time for one more falls (a daylight return in this unfamiliar territory is a must).  Internet equipped phone to the rescue as a quick photo search yields the opinion that Horsetail Falls will interest us more than Angel's, so further east we drive along the Historic Columbia River Hwy.

Ponytail Fall's, visitor free

 Ponytail Fall's, visitor full

Horsetail is a much shorter trail than Latourell (the horsetail portion is the lower bit you can see from the road, but Ponytail Falls is the bit requiring a climb).  OTOH - the elevation change is much more noticeable compared to Latourell.  Whew, you are winded when you reach the top!  It feels like you start out straight up, and that's about how you feel when you reach the upper falls area.

I stopped and chatted with a lovely mother, Heidi, her son, and their two dogs, Atreu and Paco.  We had a awesome visit.

Back down to the car, and back home happily exhausted by the day.

Leftovers are pizza from the night before, and dessert.

Yoga before bed, and I kick up into Pincha Mayurasana again.  Two days in a row.  And I held it for several seconds.

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