Hells Canyon, Episode 2

Happy Memorial Day everyone. I had originally planned to spend the long weekend down in the Alvord Desert of southeastern Oregon with friends and the family. We would have been camping, hiking, birding, herping, and soaking in hot springs. But circumstances had us backing out of the trip at the last minute to spend a lazy weekend at home. So…

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Moscow Mountain Snowshoe

Saturday, January 14, 2017 It's not often that I get out to hike these days. But we've had a fantastic winter so far, and after a week of insanely cold temperatures and clear weather, I just had to get out and take advantage before the warm weather and rains took over. I've always wanted to hike to the lookout on…

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Adventures with Clara: Hobo Cedar Grove

[embedyt] http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6fGgqlKSpXw[/embedyt] The Hobo Cedar Grove is a nice easy 1-mile hike through a grove of giant old-growth trees. It is the perfect hike for toddlers to explore nature, which is why we brought Clara up there on Sunday. She enjoyed the large trees, but wasn't into walking the trail much. Eventually Erin had to carry her for most of…

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Grandmother Mountain

I finally got some time to get up to Freezeout to hike Grandmother Mountain. The flowers are out and it's quite pretty, though it's not the best year for flowers that I've seen. It could be that I got up there a little late. Everything seems to be coming out a little earlier this year than normal. But then, all…

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White Pine Loop & Bomber Too

Last week, Clara and I had a day to ourselves, so we had a little adventure on a nearby trail. The white pine loop is a 3-mile hike from the White Pine campground off of Idaho Rt. 6. A one-mile (one-way) out and back spur takes us to the site of a WWII bomber crash site with some pieces of the…

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Wallowas Weekend 2015

After a long summer with not much exploring, the pace has changed and I've had a fairly busy two weeks. The series begins with the return of the Annual Wallowas Weekend. In the six Septembers that I have lived here, I've led a backpacking trip to the Eagle Cap Wilderness four of those years, with this year being the fourth.…

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Seven Devils on the Fourth of July

What do you do when temperatures rise above 100º F? Seek relief at very high elevations. This June was one of the hottest on record for the northwest with several days above 100 degrees in Moscow. So when my friends proposed a backpacking trip for the Fourth of July weekend, i was a bit skeptical, especially given the location's tendency…

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East Moscow Mountain

[map style="width: auto; height:400px; margin:20px 0px 20px 0px; border: 1px solid black;" gpx="http://www.mineral2.com/wp-content/uploads/Moscow Mountain Hike.GPX"] I had heard about the big trees on Moscow Mountain, but I had yet to experience them for myself. I first drove the road along the ridge back in 2010, the year I moved to Idaho. Back then, I passed some fairly large trees along the…

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Small hikes near Moscow

The end of the semester is a busy time, and that often means foregoing larger adventures for some smaller ones closer to home. In the last week, I've been trying to keep active and take advantage of the local trails. One of these trails is the Headwaters trail on the western end of Moscow Mountain. In my five years here,…

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Annual Wallowas Weekend 2014

[map style="width: auto; height:400px; margin:20px 0px 20px 0px; border: 1px solid black;" gpx="http://www.mineral2.com/wp-content/uploads/Selected Data from wallowas 2014.GPX"] The annual Wallowas Weekend tradition kinda took a hiatus for a couple of years. In 2012, Tyler had to pull out of the trip, and several other people followed. That left me with one other person who still wanted to hike, but also…

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Oregon Butte

In a world where there are so many playgrounds at arm's reach, the Blue Mountains of southeastern Washington are so often overlooked. They're not as tall as the surrounding mountain ranges - the highest point is just shy of 6400 feet. There are no natural lakes, and the valleys are actually canyons carved into an uplifted basalt lava flow. But…

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Roman Nose Lakes

[caption id="attachment_605" align="aligncenter" width="344"] Upper Roman Nose Lake with Roman Nose peak rising behind it.[/caption] Last year, I tried to take my family up to Harrison Lake to enjoy a true alpine zone. When we got close, we saw that the lake had been closed due to problematic bear activity. I would have still been ok hiking up there, but…

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Asotin Creek

[caption id="attachment_483" align="aligncenter" width="500"] Bighorn Sheep at Asotin Creek.[/caption] It's funny that only two weeks ago, I was clearing snow from my driveway, and now there's hardly any sign of winter left on the Palouse. Instead of snow, it rained for nearly a week straight. So when we caught a break in the weather on Saturday, I was quite happy…

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A President’s Weekend in McCall

I can't believe February is almost over an I haven't made any posts yet. I've been plugging along with classes and research and laying fairly low for financial reasons. I'm not skiing this year, which helps out in keeping my costs down. I have been snowshoeing more this winter than in the past, and that's helping to keep me in…

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Snowshoeing Moose Creek

Last week, winter returned to the Palouse. We got about six inches of snow in Deary, most of which was still around over the weekend. On Sunday, I joined a group of students and post-docs for a snowshoeing trip to Moose Creek. Although it was a foggy and overcast day, we had a great time. I'm always amazed at how…

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4th of July

Once again, I missed the fireworks. I admit that I was looking forward to photographing them, but in the end, I was busy hanging out with friends, and we decided not to go over to Pullman. I did spend much of my nation's birthday enjoying one of the best parts about this country: its wild side. I went back up…

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