Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Big Sky Country

Here are a couple of photographs of where I was doing field work last week. Jealous much?

This is near the City of Dufur, Oregon, where I surveyed for Astragalus tyghensis (a cream-colored member of the pea family) and Ranunculus reconditus (a tiny buttercup). A thunderstorm flushed us out, and we had to drive through it on our way to Umatilla, another two hours' drive away. 50 mph winds and intense rain made for a very sketchy drive, particularly since we were driving on a flat tire unawares, going 80 to try to get out of the storm as quickly as possible, and I was fishtailing all over the fucking lane. Very scary indeed.

Here's the site in Umatilla where we conducted wetland delineations. "Wetlands in the desert?" you ask. The site was peppered with ephemeral, seasonal wetlands that were actually pretty easy to delineate. However, in 90+ degree heat I can't say it was a lot of fun. But first time doing fieldwork in a bikini, and I didn't get a single tick on me!

In the distance you can see the Mighty Columbia. I picked a lot of sage that day. Greta walked around GPSing the ditch that bisects the property until she started seeing stars. She got three ticks on her that day, but luckily found each of them as they were crawling around and didn't get the Lyme Disease.

Tomorrow I'm off to Roseburg to chip away at the hard clay soils and try to finish delineating the future quarry that I haven't been to since March, when there was actually hydrology. At least there's a McMenamin's down there.

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