Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Portland Pictures

Portland has a basketball court in a volcano, the only one in the US. Portland has the Willamette River going through it and many bridges on it.

Portland vs Boston

I was given two tickets to a basketball game yesterday. I was able to take my Grandson to see Portland play Boston. It was a good game and Portland won during the last minute. The Celtics were the world champs last year so it is a big deal. A daughter and her fiance were also at the game so that was kind of neat.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Wolf at Mendenhall?

A wolf at Mendenhall Glacier? Yes! For the past 6 winters a lone wolf hangs around Mendenhall Glacier. I just read about him and he is back evidently. He will go up to animals and people and wants to play. The article says he as never been dangerous but to keep pets on a leash. I will be back in Juneau next week and will check it out.

Monday, December 29, 2008

One Year Ago

A year ago, I was packing for Bush Alaska. I flew into a village in Jan 2008 and got out of an airplane in minus 25 degree weather. I was scared shitless when I stepped out of the airplane - what the hell did I get myself into? I was on the Yukon River by the Bering Sea. I was 8 miles up from the Sea. The Yukon in Jan had 3 Feet of ice and snow when I flew in. I settled in, taught and time flew by. I goofed off in the summer and decided to go to Juneau this year. I am now on vacation in Portland, OR. I will put a picture of the Columbia River on this later. The Columbia is comparable to the Yukon in size BUT THE YUKON WAS FROZEN SOLID from October to May.

The year 2008 produced new experiences for me. I feel very fortunate to have the opportunity to bounce around as I am presently doing. The best news of 2008 is Obama will be President. GW needs to go back to Texas! The country would have benefited had GW been in Texas the past 8 years.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Super Snow in Juneau!

I got a call from Juneau and it has been getting massive snow. There are avalanches around Juneau. They wanted to know where my truck keys are because they need to clear the road it is parked on. I guess there has been feet of snow and more snow is expected!

It is raining in Portland, OR.
The picture is of Multnomah Falls, OR.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Bridge of the Gods picts

Bridge of the Gods, Celilo Falls

Before Pictures, I have to explain the history:

The Natives tell of the time that a rock bridge went over the Columbia River where the present Bridge of the God is. The Indians say their ancestors could walk over the rock bridge from what is now Oregon to Washington State. This was a sacred place for fishing. Beneath the Rock Bridge was Celilo Falls, which was a series of rock croppings that the water fell down. Imagine hundreds of waterfalls over an enormous area which the entire big river had to go down. This caused a constant mist/fog. The salmon would swim up the waterfalls, rest and then swim higher in the mist. The Indians would catch salmon here. Seven different tribes used this as their fishing hole. They would find a place to sit and catch salmon for themselves and their tribe. The Bridge of the Gods now rests where all of this took place.

Present Day: Celilo Falls is gone: An Electrical Dam was put in and Celilo Falls was covered up. The original Bridge of the Gods made of rock is lore, told from generation to generation. The Indians still fish here. They are allowed to use dip nets on this stretch of water.

I had to hike in to get the pictures. Usually you drive but there was too much snow for my little car.

Friday, December 26, 2008

More Gorge Pictures

I went back to the Columbia Gorge and took a few more pictures. The early traffic was fine and the road was white with snow. Coming back, with warm weather, the roads were slush and bounced me around a lot. It was a bit sunnier today, so I am hoping the pictures will come out lighter. This is Multnomah Falls. I also went to Bridge of the Gods - pictures later. You can see the green from the trees and moss too. A little color and the lighting seems to be a bit better.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Christmas in the Gorge

These pictures are Multnomah Falls in the Columbia River Gorge. When it gets snowy and below freezing, I like to get out there and take pictures. It is spectacular normally but even moreso with snow and ice. I had white roads the whole way and we had a constant snow, so the pictures seem kind of dark.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas, health and happiness to you!

This picture is of the Community Tree in Douglas, Alaska.

Merry Christmas Eve!

I hope all have a wonderful Christmas Eve! I am snowed in here in Portland, OR. We have a white Christmas and then some. I made it up the hill to my daughters house and they have over 2 feet of snow! I have a bit over a foot of snow where I am. I have never seen this kind of snow before in Portland.

At 7:30 AM, it was not snowing. I thought, I will drive out up the Columbia Gorge and take pictures of Multnomah Falls, which must be frozen (very rare sight.) Change of Plans: IT IS 8 AM and snowing like crazy so I will watch the snow fall.

Wishing you the best this Christmas Eve Day.

The picture is of the Alaska Governors mansion in Juneau, AK.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Foot of snow, bigger drifts

Weird: Portland, OR and a solid foot of snow with drifts of 3 and 4 feet. I dug out the car with chains and immediately drove into a drift - so I parked it for the day.
I see a fellow up the street who wants to drive but got stuck in a drift. The snow is powder - so it is easy to shovel.
This is suppose to continue through the week. People have been stuck at the airport for 2 days. Hope things are better where you are. I have not been up to see my Grandkids because I could not make it up the hill. The White Sentra is the car we took to the mountains (daughter's car). My car stays in the garage with snow, I do not want to put chains on it unless I have no other alternative.

UPDATE: SNOW RECORD IN PORTLAND, OR SET TODAY!!! 14 inches is a record and still snowing.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

freezing rain and more snow!

Portland is being hammered with snow, wind and FREEZING RAIN~ Yuk.. They are talking about another 4-6 inches of snow. The freeways and highways going West-East has ben closed for a day. People waiting for the airplanes in the airport. Even Greyhound buses are not running. I went out once today. I had to mae it through snow drifts but made it. The wind is continuing.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Snowy in Portland, OR

Constant Snow in Portland today! I just went to the store and it was super windy along with the snow. As the day progresses, the wind and snow is getting worse. We do not have a large amount of snow but wind is blowing it around and making piles of snow at various places.

Warming Hut

Here is the second picture of the warming hut. I am sore today. The snowboarding was great but I am feeling it today.


Friday, December 19, 2008

Snowboarding on Mt Hood

I went down the mountain 3 times and the last time I did not fall! That is real progress. I did intentionally fall a couple of times to take pictures. (Warming hut and sun light through clouds.) We have been having snow in Portland all day, so we had to chain up the last 15 miles up the Mtn. GREAT DAY!! Being out in the snow is wonderful!!!! We had powder snow and the snow was so much fun. In Juneau, it was iced up a bit, so this was better - NO ICE! It was also about 20 degrees and no wind - perfect!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Columbia River Gorge

This is my favorite hiking area in the Portland area. There are hikes galore here. I have not been here since coming back. I have been on Jury duty and the crime was committed here in the Gorge. A fellow took copper wire by the Railroad track and then bumped into a Railroad Employee as he left the area. We found him guilty on 3 of 4 charges. He almost lost on all 4 counts - very close call on that last charge. If we would have had medical information about the accident, he would have been guilty on all 4 counts.

I am sure glad it is over. Felt a bit sorry for the fellow. Just a broke fellow who went for some easy cash. He was driving on a suspended license.

The picture is from this summer. I have not taken any photos in Oregon yet. I will go take some shots of my favorite spots one of these days. We have snow. I am supposed to snowboard at Mt Hood tomorrow! HELP! What am I thinking?
Note: This Gorge area gets hammered with snow and ice in the wintertime. They just close the road rather frequently. The wind blows through here. Freezing rain is common here too. It can be a nasty place to drive in winter.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Got on a trial

I had to go to jury duty and was running late but got there. I sat around and got called to a trial. I got picked for the jury. I have to go back tomorrow. I hope the case ends tomorrow.
I woke up and checked the computer and it said 6:15. I had to be in Portland by 8 AM. I went out into the living room and looked at the clock - IT SAID 7:15. We had snow and ice and I had 15 miles into Portland. No eating, No coffee - just got dressed and went.
I made it to the court house at 8:00 AM - just under the wire. (My plan was to take mass transit but I was too late for that.)

My computer is on Alaska time.

I forgot a camera or I would have taken pictures of Portland. We had snow much of the day and white streets. Driving in, it reminded me of Juneau. I hope I am awake enough to take pictures tomorrow. GRAB THE CAMERA ON THE WAY OUT! GRAB THE CAMERA ON THE WAY OUT! Grab the...
The picture is of Juneau. It snowing or raining and freezing in Portland, OR. Palm Springs, CA got 2 inches of snow: Juneau is sunny and cold. Want sun - go to Alaska?

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Environmental article

I read this article about Canadian Natives and how their health, food and lives in general are being put in jeopardy by extracting oil. Having lived in a village, I was able to see how close to the land natives live. If the land is fouled, they are impacted in a huge way. The picture is from the village that I stayed. It is the church. They were having a funeral on this day.


Monday, December 15, 2008

Eaglecrest Ski Area

Here are some more ski area pictures. Did I mention that I snowboard like crap? It is true. But, it was fun. I AM SO SORE TODAY! I could barely move this morning. I felt like I needed WD-40 to get my joints moving again. I am still quite sore this evening.
Notice the sun in the picture!!! So Rare!!! It was about 10 degrees with a 20 and 30 mile an hour wind. Keep moving type of weather.

I fly out tomorrow at 1:30 PM. It is now 6:30 PM. I have to go to school and do 2-4 hours of work and then I am gone. Still have to clean the apartment, pack, read over paperwork for school and stuff like that but hey, I can guarantee that I will not miss the flight. I have two grandsons who want to see if they can kick my butt yet. One of these times, they will. (We wrestle)

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Sunrise and Ski area

Two pictures are of Eaglecrest Ski Area and 1 picture is of the sunrise.
What a beautiful day to be outside. The weather forecast as told by a local is 3 days of cold and sun, then 20 feet of snow during vacation. Portlland just got 6 inches of snow today.

Mountains around Mendenhall

Here is a lake by the U of Alaska Juneau campus. It is along the road to nowhere. The mountains are by Mendenhall Glacier.

I was taking pictures this AM and got some great shots of the moon and of the sunrise. Weird though: It was +20 degrees and my hands would freeze up. In the village, it would be 20 and 30 below zero and did not freeze up like the 20+ did. In the village, I would be out for an hour or so at 20 below and no big deal. Here at 20+, I would be out of the truck for 15 minutes and I was freezing.

While out, I saw two eagles munching on something by Gasteneau Channel. Some little birds were trying to get their share of the food. The little guys were right there snatching food with the Eagles. Thought that was interesting. (This eagle picture is from a week ago, not this AM) I saw an eagle at the dump yesterday too.

snow capped mountain

This set of mountains are different than the range which I see from my apartment and the mountains around Mendenhall. They are East. This range is North.

Back online

-There a lot of snow capped mountain pictures but the real weird thing here is the sun. It truly is a rare sight.
The top picture is Douglas Island. Behind those mountains is a ski resort. It opened yesterday and I was told the snow was good on top 20 inches of powder. With the rain followed by cold, I thought it would be grainy and ice.
- The sun was peeking from behind a mountain!
It sure is annoying when the internet goes down.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Sunny, cold and windy today! Beautiful!

Beautiful day! Cold and windy but super beautiful!
Bottom picture: It was taken from my porch. There are mountain goats up on that mountain.
Top picture: Of the Marina and mountains by my school in Douglas.

I drove to Auke Bay and mendenhall Glacier, so I got a lot of pictures to put up. My internet is down so I am doing this at the library in Juneau. Flying out in 4 days. Got a suitcase out and throwing things towards it. Clean the apartment - YUK.

Full Moon in Juneau

Last night we had a full moon. It was about 25 degrees with NO CLOUDS. I could see the moon and the mountains. I drove to Mendenhall Glacier and hiked around there under the full moon. It was beautiful. the lake is freezing over and when I get back from Oregon, I hope to cross country ski out on the lake, without falling in. (As a HS student I did fall through ice, not something I care to repeat.)

It looks like we will have sunshine today - hooray! I hope to get new pictures up. However, I need to do a lot of school work, clean the apartment before I fly out, do wash, and pack too. So, I must prioritize: Time to get ready to go take pictures.
Packing for my trip means I have to get rid of my coffee/lamp table, the suitcase so I need to hold up on that anyway.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Juneau from Douglas Island

Today waa an absolutely beautiful day! Sunny and cold. I was at school but at recesses, I wished I had my camera. I left it at home. This is an evening picture. We could see the full moon.

Shooting Update: 5 boys were goofing off with guns. 1 boy pointed a gun at another boy and at the same time, another boy came into the room. The bullet discharged and went through 1 boy and then the bullet went through the second boy. The first boy shot is in critical condition. The second boy died 12 hours after the shot. The boy that pulled the trigger has been charged with manslaughter. Sad story.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

See his smile?

I swear, this Porcupine smiled for the camera! CLICK ON THE PHOTO TO MAKE IT BIGGER!

Busy week! I am scrambling this week. Kids are goofy, I have one meeting after another. I get out of the meeting to find one of my students has stomped on a teacher's foot and then into another meeting. I am going to be working this weekend to finish off paperwork.

Yesterday evening in Juneau: A boy got a gun out of a locked cabinet and played with it. He knew it had no bullets in it. He was wrong. He was shot through the chest and his innocent friend that just walked into his room also took the bullet. One bullet through two kids. One is dead and one is in critical condition.

I fly out to Portland, OR next Tuesday and have jury duty in Portland on Thursday. I lived in Portland for 20 years and never got called to Jury Duty. I move to Alaska and get called - such a deal.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Snow is off the trees today!

More rain so the snow fell off the trees. The roads are clear and piled up alongside the road. The snow is supposed to stick around for the weekend so I can play in it!
That is my old truck in front of the trees. I did not dig it out until later. I walked to school.

Kalen: Snowmobiles - not many in Juneau. Snow melts too fast. Cars and public transportation here. In the villages, Snowmobiles and airplanes are the vehicles. They are the preferred way to travel. Flying is quite expensive - snowmachines overall cost is cheaper. (It cost 300.00 each way to fly from Anchorage to my village on the Yukon.)
The white folks in the cities use snow mobiles for entertainment and sport but most often use vehicles to get around and to/from work. This photo is fuzzy - just noticed.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

18 inches of snow

Winter Wonderland going to school. It started raining about 1 PM and we now have slush! Yuk! It sure looked great this morning.