24 March 2009

a pretty hike

We took a walk on the 21st in the eastern Columbia River gorge, allowing us a good stretch o' the legs and our camera a good test of its capabilities with the Tamron 18-250 attached. It did not disappoint, and we have several images at the /ccreek folder on picasaweb. I've seldom shot real telephoto shots while hiking, but several birds made it worth trying, and the images will keep me at it!

The first bird, a mistakenly-ID'ed Western Meadowlark (his/her back was turned, depriving me of a better ID -- honest :)) is perhaps the best image, but the Mountain Bluebird was a touch more colorful and a surprise as well. I'd never seen one outside of the Ruby Mts in Nevada, so at 400' in Washington was not expected! Of course, the vultures weren't all that expected either; thankfully I shot in RAW mode, so later processing brought the sharpest image to life later. And oh yes: the flowers were wonderful as well, lots of grass-widow and two types of parsley, along with yellow bells and short sprigs of Bitterroot waiting their turn to show in a few weeks.

11 March 2009

making plans

Well, my wife and I joined a fitness club and are hard at work to regain our strength and stamina. Other than the Portland snowstorm and a few days of snowshoeing/skiing around the area, and a few bike-rides to work, we have not been doing a lot of exercise. This should help - and with hot-tubs in the changing area, we get our pain and our relief in one trip! I recently learned that my presumed bursitis is in fact an MCL injury; I might still have bursitis, but right now that isn't the problem. Whatever it's called, my knee needs to be treated gently while the rest of me gets more fit.
On the snow front.. that last post was a bit off on our 'last snow'. Perhaps it was Monday the 9th; forecasts sound warmer for a while, then cooler again but late March means cool not cold (usually!). We shall see about that. The yard suffered greatly from all the snow, which seldom stays on the ground for more than a couple of days here. Time to weed, feed and re-seed the lawn (and some moss killer would be a good idea too).
Hopefully as skies clear we'll be doing more star-gazing; that too has suffered in recent months. Also, partly because this year ends in a nine and partly because it's fun and theraputic, we hope to get more backpacking in this summer. Once again: we shall see.