Author Archive: Poseidon

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McKenzie River Love

It’s been a devastating time for so many people, animals, birds, fish and forest. With wildfire taking over places we thought were safe, we embark into a new reality. What can we do?

We can continue to send good vibes and strong thoughts towards the people who have been displaced. If we can afford the time we can volunteer and if we can afford the money we can donate needed funds. We can keep our memories and experiences close as we remember the McKenzie River Corridor.

Being a student at the U of O was an incredible experience in the mid 90’s. The natural getaway was up Hwy. 126, winding along the pavement catching little glimpses of swiftwater or a deep pool. These excursions were a needed therapy during a challenging push to succeed at the university. I was inspired enough to take Kayaking 101 as a result. Soon after that I got involved with the U of O outdoor program and spent any free day up the McKenzie paddling with other lucky people. After finishing at the U of O, I took a job at the City of Eugene. I was lucky to learn the ropes of guiding on the Mckenzie River. Working for the River House, I learned how to navigate rapids and how to inspire countless other people to discover and appreciate wild places. The Mckenzie River is a fantastic place to accomplish this!

Some of those people who I shared the river with were my parents 🙂 They so fell in love with the place that they decided to move to Vida and retire on the river. Of course I was happy to come visit and spent lots of quality time in the presence of the river, among family and friends. During those years I was guiding here an there and would always come home to the McKenzie. It was a place to reflect, relax and become inspired for the next challenge in life. The river is continuously changing while offering a steady reminder of what is really important.

After the terrifying fires happened, the feelings came on strong. It’s hard to know how to react, but most importantly is the hope for the residents who lost everything so fast. We hope they can keep their heads up and persevere despite the unbelievable challenges. While the Goodpasture covered bridge still stands, I did learn that my parents old house burned down. Most importantly the new owner survived and is in a safe place. It was an amazing house, but the land and the river still live on as a source of inspiration!

Relaxing times with friends on the McKenzie River
Loving life on the McKenzie near Vida, 1998
Wedding reception on Goodpasture, 2010

Here are two videos of the McKenzie River. The first is a serene moment near Deerhorn. The second is a fun video of us goofing off on a surf wave near Vida.

September 18, 2020 | 1 Comment More

Canoe Canal Appreciation Week – CCAW 2020!

This week panned out to be a perfect one for getting some long awaited maintenance done. As you may know, the 2 1/2 mile waterway is a lot to cover, so we try to appreciate it a bit at a time.

Monday – Putting in at the D Street boat ramp in Springfield, I paddled upstream to the large eddy that is just above the Canoe Canal intake. It was full of garbage and driftwood. I spent an hour in the eddy breaking up the wood which freed up the trash to be able to pick it up. Additionally, I located a shopping cart in the middle of the river that will likely stay there until we can organize and get a group to remove it.

Eddy 50 yards above D. street ramp. Before

Tuesday – Paddling the Lower Waterway of the Canoe Canal to assess the needed attention. Now that we have moved our rental location above the Lower Waterway we have been focusing on the health and beauty of what’s above. It feels like our lack of attention to the lowest section of the waterway has come at a cost. I paddled the area for the first time this season and learned that it is in desperate need of help. There is a lot of trash, and a number of spots where unhealthy scum is collecting. The algae bloom is not helping because it collects these items and scum.

This photo is from a 2016 cleanup

Wednesday – Today was a hot one. So getting on the water early was the strategy. First off I filmed a video showing off some basic tools for cleaning up a waterway. Here’s the link

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bNwJiroYYnU

After 2 hours collecting small items I got back to shore and took inventory. It turns out that I collected 55 socks that were underwater! 15 tennis balls of various states of decay, broken glass, rusted tin, and other nasties.

55 socks and more on Sept. 2nd 2020

Thursday – One of the unique features of the canal is the dam. People portage boats around the dam quite often. I added the 7th, 8th and 9th bucket of gravel to the sink hole. This is to improve the footing while carrying boats. It’s right next to the water and now it is easier to launch a boat. Additionally, I spent time with the picky-uppy tool and collected a pellet bag worth of trash. Mostly styrofoam bait containers, broken glass, and a few lonely sandals.

The sinkhole with 9 buckets of gravel.

Friday – Focusing on the removal of Himalayan Blackberry plants on shore. At our new rental location there used to be an abundance of blackberry plants. Spending down time trimming and digging these out created this pretty large pile. It’s leather glove work that has some challenge involved. Now the native Ash and Willow trees and snowberry bushes are free of the invaders. We first noticed this spot as a potential rental location in 2016 when we cleaned up the trash pile left by a camper. Now the dream has become a reality. We hope you enjoy it as much as we do!

Pile of blackberry trimmings today!
Photo from 2016 when we first thought of the idea of renting canoes from this location…
September 4, 2020 | 0 Comments More

Looking Glass Cleans up the Canoe Canal.

Thanks to the generous volunteers from the Center Point school our local waterway is looking much nicer. Having paddled at the Canoe Canal as part of a Summer program for many years the Navigators took it upon themselves to help cleanup! To them it just made sense to look after the well being of the local ecosystem by removing plastics, cardboard and many other items. It was a treasure hunt of sorts as we removed many bags worth of stuff! We supplied the Catacanoe for hauling off the bulk of the materials including a car tire! This was a much appreciated effort that has become an annual focus of their Summer paddling season. Thank you so much to the Navigators!

August 19, 2019 | 0 Comments More

Earth Week Cleanup!

If you want to feel good about where you live, then cleaning up is a nice way to accomplish that. On Saturday we assisted with the Willamette Riverkeepers is picking up garbage along the banks of the section from Valley River Center down to the Beltine bridge. Don’t worry, we didn’t get all of it, so you can join on the next cleanup if you want to feel good too!

Boats filling up with garbage…
April 23, 2019 | 0 Comments More

Canoe Canal at Flood

This Spring we had quite a downpour. Rains that lasted for days and days lead to the swelling of the watershed. We decided to paddle the canal when it was at it’s highest. Now it wasn’t too high at the top, as the Canoe Canal has an intake that can only allow so much water to come in at one time. But lower down after many little tributaries added some flow the park was underwater! Take a look…..

The Pond
Lower Alton Baker Park underwater
Looking at the Alder tree where we operate the rentals! 4 feet underwater.
April 20, 2019 | 0 Comments More

“Off” Season Gallery from ’17-’18

It’s been a productive Winter on the water.  We’ve had some memorable days and are now ready to provide an easy rental experience for you! Please contact us if you would like to be involved with our cleanup efforts.  Volunteers are needed and appreciated!

April 27, 2018 | 0 Comments More

Trashy Tuesdays with Willamette Riverkeepers

Every Second Tuesday the Willamette Riverkeepers organizes the logistics behind a large operation on the river.  There is a huge amount of garbage along the shores of Eugene’s section of the Willamette River.  It’s a reoccurring layer of riverside trash!  The Riverkeepers  do an amazing job attempting to keep up with the volume of garbage.  The goal is to have a pristine waterway with clean water and biodivesity.  Please consider joining the volunteer effort and contact us about trying out a Trashy Tuesday and chipping in for a clean waterway!

This volume of garbage needs large watercraft such as the driftboats and rafts that dedicated volunteers provide to haul it off.  Once we make a drop we call the City of Eugene and they have their work crews come and load it up and take it away for good.  Click the logo below to view the Willamette Riverkeepers website…

 

March 2, 2018 | 0 Comments More

Eugene River Festival

This year we had the first Eugene River Festival featuring an up the Canal and Down the River race.  It was well attended by many paddlers and curious youth!  There were free canoe rides, raffle prizes and quite a race!  The festival started off with a special introduction by the Whilamut tribe elders including some beautiful drumming.  Thanks to all who helped make this such a special event!  We  look forward to next year…

 

Paddlers in the 2nd heat get ready to begin the race.

October 19, 2017 | 0 Comments More

Last Day of the Season

Hard to believe that another fun Summer has come and gone.  Thanks to you all so much for joining us at the one of a kind Canoe Canal.  It’s been a great season.  Here are some photos to share from 2017.

 

September 23, 2017 | 0 Comments More

Ice Storm takes away a lovely tree

We have had such a great experience running the rental operations under the shade of an oak tree.  It’s been 7 summers with the lavish coverage making the hot days reasonable.   Unfortunately last winter the tree split in two during the ice storm.  Now there is a very large open space where the stump lies.

Many of you and we enjoyed the charm, habitat and shade provided by that tree, and now things are different…

The first photo was taken last season and the second photo was taken this last weekend.

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

May 22, 2017 | 0 Comments More