Mary’s Peak & Arctic Museum

June 13, 1996

Our route really was on by-ways and back roads, starting out River Road which traces part of the Applegate Trail and was the original Hwy. 99. After a brief stop at the nicely timbered Washburne State Park, we passed through Monroe to Alsea Falls. En route, Ewart Baldwin described the geology of the Coast Range, and added his always fascinating anecdotes of his work in this region. Some 45 years ago he mapped the Alsea area as well as the Dallas-Valsetz quadrangle — mostly on foot — for the U.S. Geological Survey. Following an enjoyable time at the Falls, we checked out the unique picnic table at the nearby McBee County Park. Hull-Oakes fashioned a solid slab of Douglas fir measuring 90' in length, 38" in width and about 6" thick. This huge table top is protected by a roofed shelter and its attached benches are also of solid wood. Then to Mary’s Peak where we lunched in comfortable weather, but clouds obstructed the view of the Cascades. Various abundant wildflowers were in full bloom. Then down the winding mountain road to Philomath and to Hwy. 223 to visit the Ritner Creek covered bridge. Next to the roaring waters of the Falls of the Little Luckiamute. Some local daredevils entertained us by jumping and diving from a 20-ft. cliff into a (hopefully) deep pool. We appreciated their exploits! Next we enjoyed an hour at the Arctic Museum located on the campus of WOSC in Monmouth, curator Marianna Mace in charge. She directed us to the numerous examples of Eskimo life and culture. Anthropologist Paul Jensen served in Alaska for many years, at Little Diamonde among other places. This museum is a tribute to him and his work. The present building is inadequate to properly display these treasures which include tools, weapons, clothing, ivory carvings, even an actual umiak. A site for a new museum has been designated: only a source of funding is needed. Phil Knight, are you listening? We capped the day with the obligatory stop at the DQ and returned to Eugene at 5:45 on the Oregon Coachway’s bus ably driven by Wayne Coker.

Our group of 19 Obsidians and five non-members included Ethel Allen, Ewart Baldwin, Glendora Burbank, Ingrid Carmichael, Clair Cooley, Helga Defoe, Bette Hack, Evelyn Hile, Everett & Marilyn Holbrook, Kess Hottle, Rosella Jones, Dody Leppmann, Grace Miller, Liz Reanier, Betty & Harvey Speck, Tom Taylor, Al Thiessen, Louise Thurber, Dorothy Turner, Paula Vehrs, Chris Wegelin and Ray Jensen (leader).

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