Thursday, December 31, 2009


...that this place is not about us, never has been and never will be. And the history it teaches us is what we must learn, yet never seem willing to study.

It's rare to see the water this high on the Yaquina river. We planned a mid-winter row in our skiff today on a strong ebb tide, but a powerful Pacific storm came in this morning, opposing the current. The highest tide of the year was instantly increased to flood stage by these conditions.

New Years Eve 2009 from doryman on Vimeo.

This is the launch ramp we regularly use, 13 miles inland from the ocean. The winds at Beaufort 8 and surge from the ocean, this far upriver! And as the tide was turning, this is what we found... The air is saturated with spray from the standing waves and driving rain. One of those days when the atmosphere and the sea merge.
Not conducive to launching a row boat.

On the way home, we drove under a cluster of large trees that was slowly collapsing across the road as a result of their roots being undermined by flood waters.

So we spent the remainder of the last day of 2009 contemplating the power and majesty of nature, over which we have for so long presumed to have such mastery.

Imagine...that it is not all about us.


Anonymous said...

I love this imagery and captures pretty well the unpleasantness one can experience on the water in a boat...without having to try it.

Big storm coming here in Maine....there was a midwinter row for tomorrow...was. It is hard living here in the winter when all you really want is to be able to launch a boat in relative comfort.

doryman said...

In the photo, you can see me looking hard at that water. I wanted to be out there so bad, I almost went anyway. (Do love a good storm!)
The hard part was that the day before was clear and calm. Should have dropped everything and went for it! But I had scheduled a row with a few friends and by the evening before, everyone had bailed out.
I sympathize with you folks on the east coast. At least we don't contend with ice and snow very much. Six months off the water every winter would be very hard for me.

uurchin said...

Love the poetry of it all. I am aching to go for a row and not a ramp open for miles and miles. Got to wait for March when they put the carriages back on the rails which have just been straightened. Ice damage.

doryman said...

Wendy - carriages, rails! Launching a boat around here means trailers, trucks and full parking lots.
But the ice I don't miss!