This past Sunday (18th) my wife and I celebrated our 4th wedding anniversary (and our 7th year together).
To celebrate we went kayaking at Milo McIver State Park on the Clackamas River. We were joined by my wife’s parents, who brought one of their dogs, for the 3 hour/five-mile water excursion. Jessica was able to place the Underdog “Undie” in her kayak where he acted as scout for the trip.
No one brought their camera so no pictures of our actual time on the water was recorded but we do have a few pics of my wife and I in our kayaks and a couple of my wife and our dog “Undie” who had taken up co-pilot position with her while we were getting ready to depart the park for the day.
We got to McIver between 12-1pm on Sunday afternoon to find almost no-one in or around the water. Very strange. As we unloaded our vessels from the roofs of cars a few other people who had the same idea also began to offload their water conveyances.
The water was like glass and we had it almost all to ourselves. With the exception of one boat, hell-bent on getting somewhere in a hurry, a pontoon boat anchored and its occupants fishing and a small raft with a trolling motor, the only vehicles on the water were all self-propelled. We saw perhaps a dozen or more kayaks and just the one canoe that was with us but no other people on the water. In fact I believe there were only a handful of people fishing from shore when we left and came back.
It was so perfect – the sky was blue without any clouds. The temperature was in the low 80’s and we had some measure of air movement around us as we pushed forward on and in our water crafts. As I mentioned before the water was like glass and made for quick and easy travel.
We did see a couple of osprey circling about on the thermals looking for fish. We also spotted their nest sitting atop of a tree that appeared to have all the branches near the top removed just for the sole purpose of giving the raptors a place to make their home. It was almost on the edge of the river and had clear viewing of the water below for a half-mile in either direction.
There were tons of tiny fish around jumping here and there for bugs that had ventured to close to the water. Sadly no larger fish made their presence known. Not really unusual during the heat of the day.
I did note that the walls of the river rose to scores of feet in many places throughout our short journey and that the water dropped off pretty immediately and fairly deeply. These conditions were perfect for a few enterprising people, that had found ropes that were placed from trees by people before them, to merrily use to swing out over the river and plunge into the cool awaiting watery embrace of the Clackamas below.
As we passed the pontoon boat about three-quarters of our way down on the first leg of the trip I was able to get close to the steep rising wall where a few blackberry vines had managed to grow. They were bearing fruit that looked too inviting so I managed to pick about a dozen berries before moving on.
As we came to the half-way point and turned around we still had not been bothered by any motor boats and very few kayaks. The water was very inviting but I did not anything more than my feet into it and that was to extricate myself once we were finished with our outing.
About halfway back, so about three-quarters of our way done with our trip we found a small beach that we were able to stop and get out at. The dogs appreciated this as they needed to do their thing and gave the humans a moment to stretch their legs too.
While we were stopped on the beach my mother-in-law took the opportunity to try my wife’s kayak and was immediately paddling around enjoying the versatility of the kayak over the canoe.
Once we were all rested and having transferred Undie to the canoe we set off again for the last leg of the journey. It was easy-going and altogether perfect.
Later in the day my wife and I had dinner at the restaurant we always eat dinner at on for our anniversary – Hoda’s Middle Eastern Cuisine. Hoda’s is located on the corner of 33rd Belmont in SE Portland. They have another location on 47th NE Fremont if that is closer to you.
We wrapped up the night by stopping by another little secreted place that sells retro candy, soda and makes milkshakes and other sweet treats. I forget the name sadly but it is located on 33rd Belmont just half a block north on 33rd.
here are a few pics to wrap up this post. Enjoy!
More to come…