Saturday, May 5, 2012

A Day in the Gorge

Bill and I drove out to the gorge to do some hiking today.  Unfortunately, Chris couldn't join us because he had too much homework to do.  We drove to Hood River to the Twin Tunnels Trail--or as Bill calls it, the Mosier Tunnels Trail.  It is one of his favorite places to hike.  And it is a fairly easy trail compared to the other gorge hikes that he loves so I felt it was one that I could manage--at least a certain portion of it.  He did the whole nine miles but since I am not much of a hiker--I managed to hike about five and a half miles.  So I didn't get to see the tunnels but I did get to the point that I could take a picture of Coyote Wall on the Washington side of the river. I really enjoyed taking my time and taking pictures along the way.  I enjoyed seeing the wildflowers and all the signs of spring.

Just as we arrived, a biker reported that he had seen a cougar on the trail.  Luckily we didn't see it but I was definitely keeping an eye out for it.  I did come across a deer carcass right next to the trail--probably killed by a cougar.  Bought to mind that even popular hiking trails can be dangerous places.
Ironically, we saw a deer crossing Mill Plain in front of us just as we were getting started with our day.  I couldn't help but think that we probably wouldn't see any deer on our hike in the gorge but we certainly saw one right in town.  I don't think I had ever seen a deer in town before--although I have seen coyotes and I have heard of cougars and bears making their way into the city. We did see one more deer today as we were driving on Highway 14 to Stevenson after our hike.  It was on a steep hillside next to the road.  But luckily it was heading up the hill and didn't come down to the road. 

A hiking trip to the gorge always ends up with lunch at the Big River Grill in Stevenson.  Today was no exception.  We enjoyed a late lunch before heading home from our day in nature.

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