Tuesday, August 9, 2016

The Big Northwest Circle

George & I drove down Washington State on the east side of the volcanoes [Baker, Rainier, Mt. St. Helen's, Hood, etc] & so on into Oregon.
We fetched up in Ashland to visit an old high school friend, Perry Prince & his wife Dori Appel.
Just a few photos of the land that we saw.

Baker from afar. I like to call it Mt. St. Baker, because I know it could blow!
I experience the ongoing enjoyment of basalt...
I learned in some places the lava flows of basalt are 5 miles deep.
That's impressive!

When I look at them I think a lot about molecular structures.

Then suddenly Mt.St. H appears!

The enormity of what happened is huge. I heard the explosion in Vancouver that morning.
Blown down trees, evidence of ash fall, was throughout.
It stunned me that rivers & lakes were choked by the earth-movement, the ash, & the trees. The lake pictured here rose 200 feet!! Not 20 feet!

This is old wood from 1981, still floating around or lying around hillsides.

Creek completely choked with wood.
Farewell shot of Mt St H.

I started to get foggy about which mountain was which, but this was one of the next ones. The driving days were long & I was struggling with it.

On to Ashland, Oregon. We saw no plays though we tried to get tx to Chicago.
The main attraction was my school friend, Perry & his wife Dori, both pictured here a from years ago.
 
Much talk we had about growing up, the schools we went to, adventures we had, politics, art, the lot!
Their house was a treasure of "visuals".
The wire sculpture was made by Perry, the teapot is from Vietnam.



Perry has always had an active interest in Asia. He lived in Japan, traveled all over & collected. His father had run an antique business below Beacon Hill. He collected Chinese wooden furniture, like this display case above.
      
He also had a jewelry-making phase, as below on the left, art-deco.

The whole thing was a visual & mental treat. Dori is a writer, so there was lots of talk about books & movies. They have both done so many things & had such interesting lives. It was so fun & we were sad to say goodbye. They fed us well too, Perry did some cooking!
  
Perry was in grades 3, 10,11,12 with me. How wonderful it it when friendships last so well!
On to Payette, Idaho.
George has a flying friend there going back to the Naval Academy days in Annapolis.
His house was a visual treat too, of another kind.
Ed & Nina are 'big game hunters', so walking into their house I was immediately struck by animals!
      
When I was in Africa I came to love the oryx. Look on the left-hand photo & notice the straight-horned creature!!
Nina grew up in Arizona & has a great collection of Navaho rugs.
 They were much appreciated.

 
In the sunset I caught some terrific grasses.











The large basket from South Africa seemed like an appropriate companion to the grass.
Off the next morning midst a big fire smoke haze (& we altering our route) to Hill City, Idaho. It is an abandoned town on a bit of a prairie rise.

I think in all, we saw about ten of these gentle old granery ladies. They are a dying entity, so enjoy! The Hill City Store & Saloon already had a photographer-on-site (also a traveler) so the two of us had much pleasure available with images!

We saw a phone booth with a frappucino bottle in it, an abandoned motor bike, an old truck, a disused postal center, & some great signs.








   
Into the park, inappropriately named "craters of the moon" which was actually is a lava flow, 2000 years ago in Idaho, that is part of the same chain of hot spots that created the wonders of Yellowstone Park.
This is totally the same as the Hawaiian hotspot that oh-so-gradually moved to form many islands.
  
On the left above is "dwarf buckwheat"-- who knew??
Then there was fabulously, deliciously old twisted wood that grew, lived & died since the year dot (Christian era)= 2000 years ago.

Lava flow below.
 
I love the subtlety of the colors below. Iron ore displays!!


 
George & I were both fascinated &  photographing.

Before Yellowstone we had a terrific & lucky-accommodation-find so we had an evening on a lake. Sunset!




On to Yellowstone!
More basalt wonders. This one I think is ash + basalt lava flow.

This one is gradations of basalt.



We are in such a zone of volcanic activity from eons ago. It takes me a while to get a grip on how magnificent all those lava flows were.
Then gradually we began to see evidence of glacial  activity: boulders left behind, lack of basalt,  & generally, change....
Presence of boulders, presence of shale, things are suddenly different.
We only looped through the northwestern corner of Yellowstone, since we had done a really proper visit of it a few years back. We saw lots of wide open meadows, streams, & bison-- a pretty big herd.


   
The over the Bear Tooth Pass into Montana.


Below, a tree, loaded with cones & seeds!
 
Below, the Bear Tooth Pass views

.. small lakes below...

...getting higher, really taxed, wind-blown trees...

Near the top... snow!!

Looking afar...

Looking close...

On to Red Lodge Montana! Our outermost travel point.
We are visiting Dusty Smith & Betsy Dane in Red Lodge Montana.
       
Dusty, Betsy, Ben, Peter, & Perry & I were all in the same class at Putney School in VT together.
This photo was taken by Ed Shore, a favorite teacher of all of us-- chemistry & math!

Ben Rogers

Perry Prince

Peter Usher
Betsy, Dusty, George, & I had an afternoon in the studio of Charles Ringer, a Minnesotan-moved-to-Montana metal worker. We get to 'look backstage' & see several rooms that show how he thinks & works.
There are collections galore & collections galore!!!


Charles had a spectacular Danish chair I coveted. Who would not?
I tried it & didn't want to leave!


A hooked rug door mat!! (below)

I love the squeezed in p, done with no embarrassment, below.

One of Charles Ringer's kinetic sculptures, below.

And I, in a mirror that goes with his car interests.

A companion piece, at taken at Betsy's house.

Good byes to Dusty & Betsy...
 
It's been a great visit!
Now George & I are on a tear to get home.
We first go to Ringling, Montana, a known place to us because of the writing & stories of Ivan Doig.
This is the old train station, the only really old building left in Ringling.
      



Hey, another selfie!
OK, now the rush home. 
Gorgeous horses.


A surprising 300-piece on-the-street quilt show in Eureka Montana.


And our last grain elevator in Creston (or Cranbrook?).



17 days of travel. Visual wonders & friends both terrific.
Glad to be home too.

Sorry for a looooong blog post.
That's it for now.