Hiking and Herping through Columbia County
You may have seen our booth at the Columbia County Fair. (We’ll be in front of Brad’s World Reptiles every day through July 18th.) Here’s how you can take part in our research. Why this project? Columbia County has received little attention from wildlife biologists, thus we don’t know how our wildlife is faring. MattContinue reading “How to enter data for Columbia County Reptiles and Amphibians”
I’m excited to learn that Columbia County’s new parks and facilities director, Riley Baker, is looking to work with the city of St. Helens to set up Salmonberry Lake as a county park. County hires new leader for parks and facilities Salmonberry Lake (also called Salmonberry Reservoir) is one of the best birdwatching spots inContinue reading “New possibilities for Salmonberry Lake”
Do you have a pond or slough on your property? Now that warmer days are upon us, you might see some turtles on the logs. Our project at Columbia County Reptiles and Amphibians is recording every lake and river that is home to turtles in Columbia County. If you have a pond, stream, or sloughContinue reading “Are there turtles in your water?”
It was a mystery. I was perusing the internet, trying to find additional parks in our area, when I ran across the name “Laurel Beach Park”. I found it on an old testing site for Columbia County Parks. The site said: Laurel Beach is a day-use facility featuring access to one of the Columbia River’sContinue reading “What happened to Laurel Beach Park?”
Last week my sister invited Matt and I to lead a 4-H herpetology and conservation event. For the site we chose Trojan Park and the area surrounding Welter Cemetery. The Welter Family Cemetery is a century-old cemetery perched on the Old Columbia River Highway, across from Trojan Park. The Welter family moved here from LuxemburgContinue reading “4-H outing to Trojan Park and Welter Cemetery”
The only salamander that shares Columbia County’s namesake, the Columbia Torrent salamander, had never been officially recorded in the county and that just didn’t seem right. These “Torrents” were one of the first salamanders I ever searched for as their habitat niche is in the spray zones of the waterfalls I love. Years ago theContinue reading “The Elusive Columbia Torrent Salamander”
Rosey and I took little Sophia to the Ruley Trailhead for a 5-mile walk. The area has been transformed since the new trailhead was built, with restroom facilities, a bike-repair station, and both historical and natural history information. It’s a nice place to connect yourself to the history of the land and how it gotContinue reading “Family walk from Ruley Trailhead”
“I [s]lept but verry little last night for the noise Kept [up] dureing the whole of the night by the Swans, Geese, white and & Grey Brant Ducks &c. on a Small Sand Island … they were emensely noumerous, and their noise horid.” Diary entry of William Clark, 5 November 1805 Sauvie Island has longContinue reading “Winter stroll at Sauvie Island”
Soon after my exciting first visit to Liberty Hill, Matt went to take a look. He reported back to me that he had found skinks there. Skinks weren’t known to exist in Columbia County! I had to see this for myself. The meadows of Liberty Hill were as beautiful as they had been at firstContinue reading “What makes Liberty Hill special”
Layers of basalt from ancient lava flows helped form the hills of Columbia County. The basalt takes unique shape depending on how the lava cooled. With the Crown Zellerbach Trail being an old logging road, there are a few areas where the road cuts through the adjoining hillsides and exposes the geological past. I (Matt)Continue reading “Cool Geology along Crown Zellerbach Trail”
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