It’s a balmy, sunny Monday morning, a gentle breeze whispering through the pines, possibly bringing some rain showers later in the day. “After 2 p.m.,” reads the forecast. This is a departure from the usual forecasts from NOAA that have seemed to concentrate on the hours of 11 a.m. or 11 p.m. It’s as if the guy or gal goes into the office, checks the weather map, and notes what is to happen at lunchtime and bed time. So the current forecast is a refreshing change.
That outlook is for the immediate future. It is not going to be rainy later in the week, and decidedly un-refreshing as the temperature is supposed to rise to 103 degrees by the end of the week. Break out the sun block.
A mystery has been solved here in West Boesel. For 40 years, since we bought here in 1970, we have known of, fished from and camped at a piece of land on the bank of the Methow River. The mystery has been, for these four decades, about who owns it. The best answer we’ve gotten was that is was owned by a group known only as “The Teachers.”
This conundrum was solved last week when I got an email from a woman named Dorothy who had read in my column a few weeks ago about what was going on regarding the huge log pile this side of Weeman Bridge. My response that it had to do with the salmon rehab program generated another email from her, answering my question about whether she was part of The Teachers. And indeed she was, along with her husband, Jerry, and friend Linda and her late husband.
We communicated a time or two more and finally, this past week, I got to meet the mysterious teachers — whom nobody, including some old-timers, had ever met. Rick Mills would be the exception. Years ago, I had spotted smoke coming from the property and on examination found a root fire burning in a large fir tree, above and under the ground. I contacted Rick and he put it out, digging with a backhoe around the affected area. That tree is now downstream in the middle of the river, as the bank continues to erode.
As it turns out, these three educators were all involved in the Edmonds School District, and when I visited them we spent a lot of time playing “Do you know…?” specific people in south Snohomish County. Or remember them. It was a fun and enlightening visit as we got together for a while Sunday, and a new friendship has been established. They all subscribe to the Methow Valley News even though they live a fair distance apart on the coast, and boast that they are numbers 39 and 40 among the persons who admit to reading this column.
Moving right along (or using the current cliché, “That having been said …”), the road to Goat Peak is in miserable condition. This from several people, most recently Louise Stevens, who told me she promised her car that if it got her home unscathed, she’d never again subject it to that torture. Meanwhile, in the Harts Pass area, we’re told the road is now open to Slate Peak. If you’re unfamiliar with that one, it is reputed to be the highest place in the state accessible by an ordinary automobile. I don’t know if this is true.
And that having been said, now that there is no more snow up there, our weekly examination of snow and water at Harts Pass is over until the snow falls again in the upper reaches. If we get more 100-degree days, that can’t come soon enough.