The Thursday Morning Shooters’ trip to Oregon had its memorable and perhaps not so memorable moments. For me, it started a day earlier when I sliced off the end of left thumb while chopping onions. Fortunately, I’m a righty so my photography was not overly hampered. But it was not a good omen.
As mentioned in my last article, I was one of two ‘back seat boys’. We had chosen or were assigned to travel in the backseat of our respective travel vehicles. I rode in absolute comfort. My ‘backseat’ partner travelled in a different level of comfort. He appeared to have been shoehorned into his seat. Surrounded by gear and after many miles of discussing camera and software issues and debating U.S. politics I’m sure he felt somewhat battered.
Our accommodation at the Silver Falls State Park although warm and dry bordered on rustic. Rain forced us to cook and socialize on the porch of one of the cabins. Somewhat difficult but we made it work.
On the morning of day two, I emerged from my cabin to laughter and guffaws. It was coming from our pilots and co-pilots. They pointed to a cooler bag lying on the ground. It was scratched, dirty, ripped and empty. It was mine. Needing a coffee, I was not amused.
During the night a ruckus on the porch had woken them. Through their cabin window they observed two raccoons fighting over the contents of my bag. Not wanting to interrupt they watched. My breakfast options were severely reduced as a result. Note to self…’Don’t leave food items accessible to the ‘wild ones!’
While on the beach near Lincoln City one of our pilots lost his keys. Our pilots had exchanged their spare keys in the event of such a situation. Fortunately, a kind soul found and turned the keys in to the restaurant at which we were lunching. All of us were relieved but it did give us another opportunity to direct barbs and insults at one another.
I don’t think any of us had an understanding of the terrain within the Silver Falls State Park. The trail to the North Falls was easy. But to get to the other falls and the far reaches of the park we had to descend into a gorge some 200 feet. This was not really a concern until it was time to come out. The uphill climb was long, strenuous and slow. As a result we missed rendezvous times and we worried. It was a good reminder that our youth has long passed.
Our plans for day three unfortunately changed. One of our group was not well. So after much discussion and a quick final trip into the park we headed for home.
Our Oregon trip was a success despite being cut short. We made some excellent images, shared ideas and told forgettable stories. The ancient trees in the Silver Falls State Park and the thundering waves on the Oregon coast have left me with the lasting impression of nature’s beauty and power.