Tag Archives: siuslaw nf campgrounds

Rain and Salmon on the Alsea River

As a friend described it, it is the “soaker-hose kind of rain” that we’ve needed so badly here.¬† Just a gentle, soak-the-ground-deeply, rain. ūüôā

Soaker Rain
Soaker Rain

It raised the Alsea River only a quarter of an inch.¬† But it was enough to bring the Chinook in!¬† 2 salmon, in the 20 lb class, were caught from the banks of Blackberry Campground this weekend.¬† It’s not that easy to¬†discover the¬†“truth”¬†about what brings the¬†salmon up a river when all you hear are fishermen’s (purported) truths or theories (sorry dear).

This I know: 1) Salmon come up the river to spawn;  2) Salmon return to their own hatching grounds.

Salmon Fishing
Salmon Fishing

But, as far as what role rain plays in the salmon spawn, I’m still listening to theories.¬† Maybe there is truth in all these theories?¬† I don’t think they contradict each other.¬†¬†Here are some I’ve heard:¬† 1) The rain¬†in the river carries¬†the scent to the salmon that they recognize from their youth.¬† 2)¬† The rain lowers the temperature of the river and it’s the right temperature that tells the salmon that it’s okay to come up.¬† 3) The rain raises the level of the river so the salmon can make it to their destination.

Blue Heron
Blue Heron

I know there are experts on the subject.  But, frankly, I like listening to the theories.  They are presented with such conviction!

We are getting more soaker-hose rain this afternoon.  We had the extra high tide (9.0) around noon today.  The minus tide (-.5) is around 6pm.  So the tide really moved in fast this afternoon.

Wood Ducks in the Siuslaw

I thought these were harlequin ducks at first.  But I did a little research and found that they are wood ducks.

Wood Duck Harem
Wood Duck Harem

These wood ducks are common in the Siuslaw National Forest rivers.

Wood Duck - 2 Males
Wood Duck – 2 Males

These males are in their breeding plumage now.

Wood Duck Harem - closeup
Wood Duck Harem – closeup

The females even have some of the iridescent green on their wings.¬† It reminds me of the traditional, human,¬†formal attire; where the woman is the colorful one and the man has a touch of the same color on his clothing….just so everyone knows who goes together!

Wood Duck Females
Wood Duck Females

As they were swimming up the tidewater area of the Alsea River, the females would take a detour.  Maybe they are looking for a good nesting area?  A few of them strayed up onto the bank, softly quacking to each other.

Learn more about the Wood Ducks here: http://www.birdweb.org/birdweb/bird/wood_duck

Blackberry Campground is a great place to observe wildlife on the Alsea River!

Meerkat Moments

As the sun starts to go down over the Pacific people find a place to pull off Hwy 101 to watch it set.

Ocean Beach Day Use
Ocean Beach Day Use

We like to call them “meerkat moments” because we all look like a bunch of meerkats as we are lined up gazing, silently, at the sun.

On this late September Thursday evening, there’s hardly any traffic on Hwy 101.

Sunset From Rock Creek Overlook
Sunset From Rock Creek Overlook

Rock Creek and Cape Perpetua Campgrounds closed this week.  Wish we could keep them open longer for the few people who would camp in them!  But there are just not enough campers to keep them open.  Tillicum, Alder Dune and Sutton are beautiful campgrounds just off Hwy 101.  The drive between them (Yachats to Florence, Oregon) is worth spending a day on; tide pools, hiking, vistas, whale watching, beach walking, surf fishing, shellfish harvesting, Sea Lion Caves, Heceta Head Lighthouse and, of course, the sunset.

There is Sunshine in my Soul Today!

Wow!  What a gorgeous day on the Oregon Coast today!

Tillicum Sunshine
Tillicum Sunshine

We had a little rain early this morning.  Then the clouds and fog disappeared and there was nothing but blue sky and sunshine!

I was too busy standing in the sun to want to sit at my computer.¬† So Don and I worked outside in the campground all afternoon.¬† Don was moving dirt around with the tractor.¬† I was finding standing dead trees and pushing them over.¬† Don’s always impressed when I push a tree down; even though they’re only 2″ – 3″ across. ūüôā

The campers were pretty entertaining too.¬† There’s a week of sunshine forecast so people are hitting the coast for fall camping.¬† We all commented that it looked more like a Saturday than a Monday.¬† There were lots of sites open (and still are)¬†but there’d be 3 or 4 campers at a time, frantically trying to decide which site is the best one.¬† People take longer to decide when there are more choices.¬† Everyone got settled though.¬† ūüôā

Check out the new Facebook page for our campgrounds:

Siuslaw NF Campgrounds