Recently we took a rainy day drive.
Sometimes when life gets the best of you, it is nice to just start the ignition and escape.
Even if it is only to tour the countryside.
So come along with me and we will take a little ramble.
The fields are very lush and green now.
And very wet.
This is a large cattle farm.
The cattle must be staying dry inside one of those very large barns.
This time of year, the fields get fertilized with a putrid mix of fish fertilizer.
It is not unusual to see flocks of sea-gulls lured by the scent.
The rest of us keep the windows rolled up!
As we come into a hilly area, we find this charming little farm.
Here we see cattle and sheep grazing.
And one black sheep! My kind of fellow!
You can see that some of the trees are starting to leaf out.
This little forest consists of tall Cottonwood, Western Red Cedar, and the smaller Alder trees, still bare.
We take a turn and come across this small former mill pond, complete with pump.
The faucet looks new, so I suspect it must be used for something.
To fill Fire Tanker Trucks, maybe?
Many rural properties are not on water lines and rely on wells.
When a fire hits, Tanker Trucks are the only reliable source of water.
Further along we come to a Christmas Tree Farm.
This area was once filled with such farms.
But the popularity of artificial trees has caused them to dwindle, although there are still a few left.
We cross the road and come upon this beautiful barn.
Once a large dairy farm, now an event destination.
You can see tables being set up in back.
Due to the traffic (yes, traffic!) I could not get a better shot, and raindrops have blurred my lens.
I love the green roof and shutters.
The whole farm was fenced in with this gorgeous fence along large trees. This is a Silver Fir, one of the largest growing trees in the Pacific North West.
This beautiful river runs alongside the farm.
Many large farms that once housed Dairy Cows, now are used in other ways, such as pumpkin farms, herb farms, flower farms, event destinations and even breweries.
There is a burgeoning business in Artisan Beer on this side of the Cascade Mountains and Wineries on the Eastern Side of the State where it is hot and dry.
It is wonderful to see these noble old farms preserved for future generations and used in creative ways.
We leave the hills behind and come back into the open fields.
This farm boasts a fancy boat next to it's barnyard!
Here is another charming little barn.
We have a very large Scandinavian population here and the style of these barns reflects that heritage.
Happy little hens scratching in a lush barnyard.
A pair of matching Llamas patiently waiting out the rains showers.
A Magnificent Big Leaf Maple, just starting to leaf out, overlooks lush farmland.
Another former Dairy Farm converted to a Pumpkin Farm.
Every fall these fields are filled with pumpkins and corn mazes and many families having a wonderful time.
In the summer the farm hosts a Medieval Fair.
We pass the beautiful farm and get a lovely surprise - a double rainbow!
Our reward for braving the rain.
Further along as we head for home, we pass these Miniature Donkeys - Mascots of a local Equine Veterinarian Clinic.
Is there anything cuter than a Miniature Donkey?
We drive through our little town and pass the Historical Society Museum.
In the summer, these flower boxes are filled with lovely cascading flowers.
Across the street we have a beautiful building to host weddings and other special events.
Once an antique shop where I bought many pieces of furniture that I still have.
The 'city' bought it a few years ago and restored it into the lovely building it is now.
But we must leave the little town behind and head back home.
The rain is coming down hard and we have chores to do.
We climb our mountain road and we see Roosevelt Elk crossing ahead of us.
A mother and her calf.
The rest of the herd hides in the forest until we pass.
We get almost home until I spy some Skunk Cabbage in this little wetlands.
Stop the truck!
I must get a picture!
I carefully make my way trying not to step on the wild flowers....
And my foot gets caught on a vine and down I go!
Luckily the ground was soft, and also very wet. I am soaked, but my camera is dry, held up high as I land on my knees.
My foot scratched and bleeding from the thorny vine,
but I am triumphant!
I have a blurry shot of Skunk Cabbage!
I turn and look and The Mr. is laughing so hard it makes me mad.
No laughing! You Skunk!
I want to take this moment to thank you Dear Friends for your sweet and kind Condolences for Champ's benefactress, Joy.
And for your wonderful stories of how you escape from the cares of the world.
Your comments are better than anything I could write and they are what makes this blog what it is.
A place to share friendship and thoughts.
Thank you for being there!