October 21, 1990
This hike came close to being aborted at square one (the South Eugene High parking lot).
A skimpy registration produced an even skimpier turnout.
Only Beverly Soule showed up on an overcast morning.
Weather reports called for rain, which had already hit the coast.
The circumstance which kept the trip alive was the fact that one more potential hiker,
John Engstrom, had called from Reedsport several days earlier to let me know he would join us
at the trailhead.
I had neglected to get his telephone number and hence could not call him now to call the whole
Consequently, I was reluctant to take the chance he might wind up disappointed at the trailhead.
So, Beverly and I hydroplaned our way to the coast where a “dinger” of a storm was in
Sure enough, John was there to greet us and, after a brief caucus, under umbrellas, we struck off
for Threemile Lake in the driving rain.
To amuse ourselves as we plodded along, we began to count the rough-skinned newts we found
crawling about on and beside the trail.
Believe it or not, we inventoried 86 of these little creatures on the 2½-mile walk.
No count was taken on the return leg for fear of duplication of count.
We found a modicum of shelter at our destination for a hasty lunch break, and then retraced our steps.
The weather was simply too bad to encourage an alternative return route through the dunes or along
The three Obsidians who completed their mission under very adverse conditions were:
John Engstrom, Beverly Soule and Vernon Barkhurst (leader).