Notes from Windward: #69

The Diving Dog

Cleo makes a splash at the swimming hole


     With summer temps pushing towards three digits, we endeavor to get our outdoor work done in the morning and late afternoon, taking the afternoon for hanging out in the earth-sheltered kitchen or in the shade of the oaks. As summer progresses one of our favorite things is to head down to the swimming hole to cool off.

Cleo gets Oana to play fetch
the stick from the water

     The Klickitat River is summer fed by snow melt from the slopes of Mt. Adams, so the river maintains a healthy volume right through the summer offering lots of opportunity to fish or float down the river on an inner tube. The only problem is that the water is really cold.

     Fortunately, there's a work-around to that. About three miles up-river from Windward, the Little Klickitat river joins the main river. After having wandered for some fifty miles across a broad terrace, the water of the Little Klickitat is at least 10°F warmer than the Klickitat.

     Just before it reaches the main river channel, the Little Klickitat runs into a rock wall that forces it into two 90° turns. At the first of these turns, the river has created a delightful swimming hole that comes with both a sunlit beach and a shady beach created by the bridge that takes Highway 142 traffic over the Little Klickitat.

Evan makes a jump

     Where the river sweeps against a wall of fractured basalt, the Little Klickitat has cut a channel that's more than ten feet deep&$8210a feature which makes jumping off the rock wall almost irresistible.

Cleo starts to climb the wall

     After falling a couple of times, our intrepid pup finally made it up to the first jumping ledge.

getting ready to jump

Cleo follows Oana's example

     After everyone had their fill of the chilly water, we headed back to Windward. Fortunately, Oana had remembered the summer rule of always bringing a bucket in order to be able to take advantage of gleaning opportunities. In this case, we were able to back the work truck up to a wild cherry tree and harvest enough Queen Annes to make a dozen cherry pies.

picking cherries from the back of the work truck

Notes From Windward - Index - Vol. 69