Friday, July 12, 2019

I could live here, edition one

I never, ever expected to live in one place for TEN YEARS. My younger self would have been horrified to even contemplate it. Life is so short, and there is so much to see. But it looks as though I am in one place to stay.

When I start to get mildly panicked by this notion, I remind myself that the bargain I've made in return for staying put is that I get to travel. My personal travel has involved putting one foot in front of another on a trail, but the work travel has been a little more wide-ranging. Through it, I have gotten to go to some pretty nice spots, which I evaluate in terms of, could I live here?

Okay, I can hear you now saying, of course you can physically live anywhere! And I know that's true. I mean, I lived in South Florida. IN THE SUMMER. But what I hope you realize I mean is, live happily.  I haven't found too many places that measure up to where I live now. There are places I'd love to live happily for a month (I'm looking at you, Puerto Rico) or even longer (Central Oregon) but in the end I've always thought I live in the best place possible.

But I still evaluate. Because I will always be a wanderer at heart. This week, I found a place where I think I could happily live! I traveled to Northern Idaho to work on a forest project. Most of the time was spent bumping along on incredibly rough roads, but I managed to spend some time swimming and running along a short but sweet trail by the bay. There's so much I didn't get to see, but I saw enough to know that it is a special place.

We got to go out on the boat to take in the Green Monarchs...Just the name sounded cool. There's a trail along top of the ridge.


And high up in the deserted forest to look at tree stands...
And walk along a motorized trail that needs some restoration. My feet wouldn't fit in the ruts!



And I saw some nice sunsets.



And sailboats.


The mountains aren't as dramatic as where I live but the water! There's so much water! I miss big water. I miss my fiberglass kayak. The lake is twenty miles in length! Twenty miles!

Of course, I just scratched the surface and it's presumptive to think that all would be perfect there. The poor little town is getting overrun by people who think it would be a pretty great place to live. I'm sure if I talked to the locals they would have plenty to say about this. So I'm not going to move there. I'll just dream about all of the water and realize I have it pretty good, regardless.

15 comments:

  1. :) I knew you'd love the lake and mountains. It's great that you finally got to experience it, and that the weather cooperated for the most part.

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    1. It was cool, but that was good as we were tromping around in the mountains and stuck in a vehicle for some of it. And no smoke!

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  2. Very beautiful, but you wouldn't like the crowds. Stunning sunset image.

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    1. You're probably right about crowds. Just the small amount we get here in August bugs me.

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  3. I'm still ISO that perfect forever place. After traveling for the past 5 years I've only found places I'd like during certain months but then again the wanderer in me likes to see and experience new places. Not rest to settle. Yes you live in a special place but those long winters and just a bit too remote for me.

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    1. I love remote. Sisters was just too civilized, though I like the amenities when I wanted them. It is such a tradeoff. I mean, here you can go places and not see anyone still, if you know where to go. I love that. But to have that you have long winters and remoteness. I guess for now I choose that over parking lots filling up by 11 and searing heat. Maybe I'll change my mind. I think it would be perfect to have 3 towns to rotate between. Like that would ever happen.

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  4. This place has one of my favorite ski areas. During a trip here last winter, I remember thinking the very same thing - although I love Oregon I could totally live here too.

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    1. I could see the ski area but didn't have time to go check it out. Still a lot to discover. I wanted to backpack, but just no time.

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  5. Sounds (and looks) beautiful. We have been through there...still less crowded than Coeur d Alene (spelling)? Maybe you, J, R, and C could go for a time later or in the fall. I do agree that you live in a very special place now.

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    1. Coeur d'alene has changed so much. Very crowded.

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    2. Yes, a beautiful area but very busy even when we came through a few years ago...waterfront all condo-covered. We went looking for Beauty Creek campground which we remembered fondly from long ago...still there but not as remembered!

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    3. As a Spokane native I've watched CD'A grow through the years. It used to be such a beautiful place to visit throughout the year. Now you're lucky if you can find parking anywhere. Downtown's beautiful natural park area has been swallowed up by parking lots and concrete jungle. The tiny community college campus has grown to also include to state university satellite campuses and a WWTP right next door. It's just not the "little" town it used to be. :(

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  6. I became part of the problem by moving here, so I can't really begrudge people wanting it too, but it is hard to see, especially when the people that come want so many amenities and upgrades.

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    1. Yes, some of those who have moved here from areas they wanted to flee, now say, "There's no Walgreens?" (there is now), there's no (fill in the blank). As L. once wrote, "Don't try to change us to the place you came from. Fold yourself in to what is here." Probably a lost cause but a nice thought.

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  7. Did you spend any time in the small communities on the east side of the lake? Those used to be quiet. Not sure if they've been invaded as much as the west side. I think Pend Orillie lake is actually more than 40 miles long. It's one of the deepest in the US at over 1,000 feet. The US Navy tests scale model subs at a base there.

    I always have to look up the spelling! Locally it's pronounced "Pond Er Ray."

    I recently read a very well written book, "Ruby Ridge," about the standoff with the FBI in that area. Gives some insight into some of the people who moved to the area in the 80s and 90s.

    Just east of the lake in Montana are the Cabinet Mountains with a small wilderness area and high alpine country. Although not as big as the Snake, the Kootenai river just to the north east is a big river.

    To the northeast the Yak country of NW Montana used to be one of the remotest areas of the country--although without big mountains.

    I was first-attack on a fire there in the 70s. Took us two hours to get there from near Libby. The fire ended up blowing up into a pretty big one and we were pulled off through the burned area.

    A week later when it was controlled we were on night patrol and had been given permission to patrol the Canadian section. It was interesting to see how their equipment and methods differed from ours.

    And we found the section of hand line we'd put in the first day had held! Mostly luck, of course, but still good to see.

    Tom
    Fairbanks

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