April 2011

April 2011
Boondocking at my brother's in Reno, April 2011

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Wind on the Water

I had a couple of people ask how Poppy was doing on the trip and wanted to let everyone know, she is doing well.  She seemed a bit tired this morning after our busy day yesterday, but overall I would say she is doing pretty good for an old dog.
 
Part two of our day on the Columbia River Gorge found us down by the river at the Hood River Marina.  The wind was howling as it known to do down the gorge.  Although the sun was shining and warm, the icy wind that blew off the river was bone-chilling.  Yes, the water was full of fools and their kites and sails.  I’m only kidding – I’m sure they think I’m a fool for not taking full advantage of the wind power that was available yesterday.  I think though that I would rather watch than participate in this particular sport.
kite boarders
How they keep from getting all tangled up with each other is beyond my comprehension.  But what a beautiful settings to enjoy one’s sport, if one is into getting blown around by cold wind and falling into even colder water!

Here’s a little video clip of the wind surfers.


We couldn’t get very close to the action here so we crossed the very narrow drawbridge at Hood River and drove west on the Washington side of the river.   The bridges in the area charge a toll of $1.00 for cars, which I think is a good deal.  Motor homes are $2 and if you are towing it will cost you another buck.

The scenery from the Washington side was just as lovely.
rocks


The sky was gorgeous yesterday as the wind whipped the clouds into streaks and swirls.
scenic


If you don’t like trains, best stay away from the gorge!!  There are two tracks on the Washington side and two tracks on the Oregon side and they keep those rails humming 24/7.  I think a train goes by at least once an hour on each side. 
train

On the Washington side there are quite a few tunnels in the rugged rock, both for cars and trains.

tunnels
For much of the highway, the train tunnel was always on the right of the car tunnel.  Then all of a sudden, their positions were reversed.  We didn’t see it happen so the railroad tracks must have passed under us at some point. 

Although the wind was whipping up huge whitecaps on the river, every so often there would be a little sheltered cove that had barely a ripple,  Notice the angry river in the background.
sheltered cove
We were almost home and had made quite a few stops and we were getting tired.  I saw a sign that said Spring Creek Fish Hatchery was ahead.  Wasn’t going to stop but I couldn’t help myself and drove down into the parking lot.  We are kinda strange that way…we love to stop at fish hatcheries as you never know what you are going to find.  This one was no exception.

Seems like it was also a playground for more windsurfers.  These guys mostly had sailboards rather than kites and they were really moving out in the wind.
sailboarder

Then we watched a large sailboat plying the waters.  The boat was so far over on its side, it looked like it was going to go on over…but it didn’t.  I think they knew what they were doing.  Russ wanted to get a video so he walked out on a walkway at the fish hatchery.  He said it was blowing so hard it not only blew the camera, the wind blew him as well.  So the video is a little shaky but it does show what happens when the wind kicks up on the gorge.   Looks more like the ocean than a river.







It was fun to watch, but I was glad I was on land and not out on the water. 

It was a full day and then some but we saw lots of fun things.  Just remember, if you see a sign that says “fish hatchery” check it out.  You may get more than you bargained for.


We are probably moving on tomorrow and not sure what our internet situation will be.  If I don't post for a few days, it's just internet issues and hopefully not because we got blown into the river!  I still do not have an air card or mifi so have to rely on wifi wherever we stop.  I know... so old fashioned...

14 comments:

  1. First of all...I would NEVER be on a sailboat and especially in those conditions. I am afraid I would have jumped out and swam to shore.
    We have never visited any fish hatcheries. What did you see this time? I actually don't even know what to expect.
    Glad you are having a wonderful time and great news about Poppy! Safe travels.

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  2. More great photos - lots of action on the water. Weather looked good too. Glad you enjoyed and good to hear about Poppy.

    Old fashioned? Well, we are too. Or maybe we are cheap . . . I mean 'frugal' ;-)))

    Thanks for sharing your day.

    Sharon and Ron

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  3. If you guys ever want to do some workamping, the fish hatchery at Bonneville Dam is beautiful. Of course not only do you have to listen to the trains from both sides, the interstate runs right by. That was the only thing we disliked about the Gorge.

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  4. quite the use of the wind!!..from parasailers to sailors!..crazy!!..glad you are all having a great time!!

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  5. Yes, that Gorge really can blow. can't it? The Mississippi gets like that too. I don't have any wifi or whatever card either, can't understand how things like that work. Makes it hard traveling in certain places. Take Care & have a good time!!

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  6. I just love the gorge area so it's been fun to see what you've been doing!!

    Have fun and be safe! Glad Poppy keeping up so well too!

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  7. You're such minimalists! Free wifi only - it's so 2010! :D

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  8. Great videos, great pictures! It's always fun to watch the wind surfers and kite surfers around Hood River. My favorite fish hatchery was Wizard Falls near Camp Sherman where we were able to feed the fish.

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  9. Love the video and pictures - like you, I would NOT be out there!! But it's fun watching!

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  10. Enjoyed the video's and pictures. It sure does look like the ocean with all those white caps on water.

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  11. We are glad to hear also that Poppy has been doing OK.

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  12. I can't imagine anyone wanting to go out in that water. Great pics.

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  13. Great pics and videos of the action on the river.

    I'm not sure if those folks playing around in that frigid water are fools or not; but, I do think they're a bit nuts!!

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  14. I prefer my water warm and calm, thank you very much. But I do love the sound of rivers gurgling downstream over rocks and boulders.

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