Category Archives: Adventures

Stories of some of my adventures, either indoors or outside

Getting in my vaguely regular practice at the range – 22-Sept-2020


Tuesday, 22-Sept-2020


I have various skill sets that I try to keep fresh – driving in the snow, for example.  Not skills that I’d always need, but ones that I feel are important enough to spend time keeping at least vaguely fresh.

One of those is hitting a target with a gun – Not something I’d hopefully ever need, but something that I feel is a good thing to keep at least competent at.


So, Laurel and I headed to the range after work on Tuesday.

It’s a range that I’d been to before – it’s actually underground, strangely enough, up in Washington.  Nothing super fancy, but definitely a solid setup.  Good safety precautions, pleasant staff… really all that I could ask for in a range.

We parked, signed in, rented a pistol, and headed in.

I mean… that’s really it.  We shot for about an hour, switching the pistol out once and then renting a rifle to complete the practice.  Just reminding ourselves how to load a magazine, how much recoil to expect, that sort of thing.  The range-master was excellent, and gave some really good tips too.

Simple, easy, and enjoyable.  With pizza afterward?  A good evening indeed.


Ohh, and here’s the pictures.  Did pretty well for not having shot in a few years.  Even better – they had a COVID-19 target, so… I saved us, guys.  Shot it dead.  All better now, right?

Exploring Oswald West state park – 12-Sept-2020


Saturday, 12-Sept-2020


Oregon is still burning.

It hasn’t let up much, and Wilsonville’s air quality has been holding pretty steady at “hazardous”, recommending that we wear at least respirators, if not full SCBA face shields.

That… makes trips pretty challenging.


But, you know what?  Challenging isn’t impossible.  I have the internet, which has basically any piece of information that I could ever want.  And I have a phone, which let’s me chat with people, and plan adventures.

Marcella and I decided to head to Oswald West – it’s a beach on the Oregon Coast, not too long of a drive, and it looked like the air quality would just be “bad”, instead of in the dangerous ranges.  Coastal breezes, fog, and light rain would hopefully keep the particulate count down, and make the air a bit more breathable.


If you’ve never seen Oregon forests through the fog – you’re missing out, and you’ll enjoy the pictures I was able to get.  It’s magical; the forests already have a primordial feel to them, and when you add in a thick fog, with just a hint of smoke, it becomes steeped in some sort of mystic haze.

It’s gorgeous.

The hike into the beach was beautiful, and over nearly before it even began.  Thankfully, it looked like we were some of the only people to come up with this trip plan, and so the trail and beach were almost empty.  There were some surfers, a few beach combers, and maybe half a dozen people walking their dogs… but thanks to the thick fog and rolling surf, it felt like the entire world was completely empty.



After coming back to the world, hunger set in.  Turns out the empty world of the beach tied into an empty stomach, which led us to the town of Cannon Beach… where we not only met some cowboys (on horses, even), but found ourselves in the Pelican Brewery, eating amazing burgers.

A good day.  A very good day.

Hiking to Duffy Lake, Mt. Jefferson wilderness – 06-Sept-2020


Sunday, 06-Sept-2020


Wildfire season has started.

Growing up, I was used to the four traditional seasons – in Winter we had blizzards, Spring had rain and sometimes hurricane remnants, Summer we melted, and in Autumn it was beautiful and perfect.

Out here in Oregon, we sort of have three seasons.  Rainy, Sunny, and on fire.

Right now, we’re on fire.


I don’t want to get into the specifics and stressors of said fires, since that’s just unpleasant and not something that I can really affect in any way, so instead I’ll talk about the hike I went on right before the fires hit.  Immediately before, in fact.  Like… very close before.  I started the hike before the fires were really bad… and by the time we got back to the trailhead, the wilderness was closed due to the fires.

The trail in question?  Duffy Lake, out in the Jefferson Wilderness.  Nothing crazy or long, or with huge elevation gain… but a lovely looking trail, and a really great way to get out into the woods.


I really enjoyed it, got to meet and pet some horses, and had amazing views of the lake while eating lunch.  At this point the smoke from the nearby fires was pretty minimal, and instead of cloying the smoke just sort of hung above the forest, giving this interestingly misty / ethereal haze to everything.  It was… beautiful, in a way.