The morning fog has lifted and the sun is shining. The weather was the big news in the Mazama environs, if not the valley, in the upper portion for certain. After many long and dry months, the rains came with a vengeance and for three days they fell, sometimes gentle with spasms of heavy pelting, roof-chattering force. This morning we had a total of almost 2 inches of rain in the measuring pot. What was rain in the lower elevations was snow higher up, and when the storm series ended yesterday Virginian Ridge, not a high-altitude environment across the road, was coated with a cap of snow.
At higher altitudes in the Mazama area — Last Chance Mountain, Goat Peak and lesser formations — were coated. Twenty inches of snow was recorded at Washington Pass on Sunday and today, at Harts Pass the same amount was on the ground. For those interested, the snow/water content was at 3 inches, above the normal recorded average. There was more water coursing under the Goat Creek bridge on the road of the same name.
Next Wednesday (Nov. 11), regardless of the power outage, there will be a small Veterans Day ceremony as in years past. Attrition and Arizona have claimed a few of the regular veterans who had been regulars. The comment was made at SLIME that Doug Devin might be the only person in his uniform, prompting another voice that stated he was probably the only vet who could still get into it. The flag lowering will take place at 11 a.m. on the eleventh day of the eleventh month, when the treaty ending World War I was signed.
The current issue of the AAA magazine Journey, a regional publication that covers the nation, has a number of local people enjoying the Methow snow. There were three separate large advertisements for Winthrop, the ski huts and Methow Trails. The models were Kristin Devin, Bryan Drye, Adam Kaufmann, Terry Karro and Julie Muyllaert.
The heavy construction at the fish habitat restoration site across the road has come to an end. I spoke with Darrin Flitton, project foreman for Pipkin Construction of Wenatchee, this morning. When I arrived at the site he was doing a once-over flight with his drone, making a last-minute check that all was in order with the construction. The drone is an amazing machine, taking excellent still and motion photos as it cruised.
“Order” is hardly the word to describe the fish channel. In what appears to be a total disorder, monster logs and root balls are laid in haphazard directions across and into a channel the width of our house, with vertical 40-foot logs set like fence posts and bolted to the horizontal pieces. But the biologist(s) seem to think the fish will revel in this environment. The water running through is all from the aquifer, not the river, and wends its way back to the Methow River after an initial journey through 2,000 feet of small culverts.
The current access to the project will probably be demolished and the entire area, already spread with topsoil, will be re-seeded with natural plants, grasses and trees.
We look forward to seeing schools of salmon ascending the river again. It’s been a long, long time.