Golden tidbits from Doug the Explorer

My friend Doug just sent me this. After where he’s been, I can see I’ve got to get out more.

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A slot canyon in Utah has been carved out for ten’s if  not hundreds of thousands of years with water and wind.  He said “lit up with sunshine it simply dazzles the imagination and there are no adequate words to describe the place.”

Other stuff and the quotes he’s sent me…

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The highway from Mexican Hat To Monument Valley.  Looked sort of like that highway in the Roadrunner cartoons where Wyle E. Coyote works on his frustrations.

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I found this sign in a toilet in Canyonlands Nat’l Park.  Don’t know the
nationality it was aimed at.

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Thirteen thousand cubic feet per second of Washington/Idaho snowmelt, rainfall and rich Palouse loess soil plunge over the falls, creating explosive reactions by the mist as it contacts the reservoir below.

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Another view. Snowmelt and rainfall from the western foothills of the Rocky Mountains and eastern Washington wheat fields thunder over Palouse Falls at 6,000 cubic feet per second (cfs).  Spray from the 185’ falls resembles a large cotton ball rising nearly 100’ upwards.  I used to think God created Palouse Falls just for me, and although I have never told anyone about this place, the parking lot was full of muddy SUV’s and even one of those small plastic jobs that should stay on the go-cart track.  February 1996 still holds the record flow (in recent memory) of 25,000 cfs; overlooking the multi-cubic mile (cms) flow from Lake Missoula 15,000 years ago.

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I hate to break into Doug’s stuff but we also visited Palouse Falls during the winter thaw. This is a wide angle view of the scenic falls. I’m throwing it back to you Doug…

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One of those wintry moments I remember from my youth is that squeaky sound my shoes make while walking through snow when the temperature drops into the single digits.  I try to carry that into the heat of summer, but somehow it’s never the same.  Much like trying to get your mind thinking about those sweltering days of summer while -10 degree wind chill is assaulting your nose, cheeks, and ears.

After nearly a week of temps in the teens and single digits it was time to visit Palouse Falls and check on the ice build-up before tomorrow’s chinook sends it four miles downstream into the Snake River.

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Some days when rain is predicted and hoped for, but passes us by, we have to
make our own rainbows.  (An i-phone photo through a dirty pickup
windshield).

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My favorite spectator sport is driving the back roads of America.  Just me &
Rambo, and sometimes the little woman, we become immersed in the rolling
hills and roadside flowers of whichever trail we come across.

This particular road bypasses Colfax, Pullman, and Moscow, before reaching almost
to the front door of Northwest River Supplies.  Took a bit of trial and lots
of errors to find it, but the Palouse loess hills, Kamiak Butte in the
distance, borrow pit poppies, green wheat fields and occasional biker chick
with dogs makes the drive worth every dusty, bumpy minute.

It sometimes makes you feel like a small frog in a big pond, but it’s free except for a
few dollars of diesel fuel.  May your next journey be as pleasant.

(Photos and commentary by Doug Smith)

I’ll post more of Doug’s photos another time. Thanks Doug!

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