Monday, October 26, 2009

Our Last Week at Bonneville Dam

Hard to believe 3 months have passed by already.  Just a few more days to work, and by this time next week we will either be on the road or already on the Oregon coast, depending on when we leave. Today the weather is dreadful. It is raining, windy and only in the 50’s and dropping.

Last week turned out better than expected, and we actually had a couple beautiful days with sun and the 60’s. The Columbia Gorge is lovely in the fall when the skies are blue. We will miss it here, and definitely want to come back. The building to the right is the Robins Island picnic shelter, and our laundry room, which I will miss the most!PA240035

We actually finished the 2 projects we’ve been working on here at the dam. Jim finally got the chain saw started, with a little help from one of the strong, young rangers, and we finished cutting the trees at the Juvenile Fish Monitoring Facility. This is Jim in his Halloween costume. Pretty scary!


Before and after.  No more fir trees!PA030033 PA050042

On Saturday we finished the blackberry cleanup by the waterfall and pond. Much to our pleasant surprise, when we came back to the site after hauling off another truckload of vines, three of the rangers were out there working.  Not sure if we would have had the energy to finish it up that day if not for their help.


We uncovered 2 manhole covers, a couple sprinkler heads, an underground yellow jacket nest, a couple more trees and the creek. They say they are planning to bring out the DR and clean it up a bit, then put a couple picnic tables there.  It is now unofficially named Cummings Landing.  We are happy to have accomplished this, and all this physical labor has really improved our upper body strength. PA240041

We took Debbie to our favorite trail on the dam project at Fort Cascades.  We hadn’t taken any pictures of it before, although we’ve walked it many times. The area was flooded in 1894, which left giant boulders that are now covered with moss and ferns. It is a beautiful place.




We feel very fortunate that we got the opportunity to volunteer here at Bonneville Dam, but we are looking forward to being irresponsible again for awhile, and anxious to get to southern California and hopefully some warmer weather!


  1. Jim,
    With that orange uniform, you would fit right in with the Florida Rd. Prison Camp inmates.

  2. Yeah, but I would hope they don't allow inmates to carry chain saws!