McKenzie Highway

April 20, 2004

April 20 was a very wet day, but 29 riders seemed to enjoy the day. The lilacs and dogwood were gorgeous. The McKenzie Salmon Hatchery below Leaburg Dam had a covered picnic area, so we could enjoy goodies and coffee and visit without drowning. Second stop was Cougar Reservoir and the thermal water control project which is under construction. Next we visited the new McKenzie River Ranger Station, a very impressive building. Then on to the Old McKenzie Hwy., stopping at White Branch, where early Obsidians spent some great times. Rick Ahrens shared an “historical days” DVD with us on the bus and pointed out other sites of interest. Some hiked up to the White Branch Lodge. Back on Hwy. 126, we stopped at Belknap Hot Springs for lunch inside the lodge. One went swimming; several went out hiking around. After re-boarding the bus the windshield told us the crystals were snow, but the temperature was 3 8'. The roadside showed traces of new snow. Both Sahalie and Koosah Falls were very full and quite spectacular. We turned back for Eugene, stopping at the Blue River Dam, where an osprey was spotted. The Vida Cafe was open for pie and coffee. We drove in to Tokatee, as many of us had never seen it. Calypso orchids and Scotch broom were also seen during the outing. We were unloading at V.R.C. about 4:30 p.m. Our driver was Gary Tolle. Riders were Ethel Allen, Rick Ahrens, Ewart Baldwin, Barbara & Paul Beard, Louise Behnke, Mary Bridgeman, Ingrid Carmichael, Ray Cavagnaro, Kent Christoferson, John Cockrell, Rachele Fiszman, Ray Jensen, Ben Kirk, Gloria Layden, Mary Lemons, Dody Leppmann, John & Lenore McManigal, Joyce Mixer, Edna Robertson, Dick & Janet Speelman, Nola Shurtleff, Millard Thomas, Mary Ellen West, Vera Woolley, Lloyd Bissell and Liz Reanier, leader.

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