2-13-19: Into the Palouse

I was searching the web for an update on conditions near Mt Rainier, and found this:

“SR 706 Both Directions – Closure on SR 706 both directions from milepost 0.0 near SR 7 (Mountain Hwy) in Elbe to milepost 13.6 near Mt Rainier National Park Gate beginning at 7:44 am on February 12, 2019 until further notice. This is due to down trees and power lines.”

This is the section of highway between Elbe and the Park entrance, where Ashford, the Nisqually Lodge, and Copper Creek are located. News is spotty, but it seems that there was not just a few, but numerous trees that were down.

So, it was a good thing I did not stay in Ashford on the night of Feb 11: I would have been trapped, and I still don’t know if people are able to get out. The Lord is looking out for me and clearly provided! I told some people I did not want to use my chainsaw to get into the area yesterday, but it looks like I and my little saw would have been no match for the situation: work crews have taken a couple of days and are still working on it.


I had seen photos on the web, and have been wanting to photograph the Palouse area for some time. Here is how it is described in Wikipedia: “The Palouse is a distinct geographic region of the northwestern United States, encompassing parts of north central Idaho, southeastern Washington, and, by some definitions, parts of northeast Oregon. It is a major agricultural area, primarily producing wheat and legumes.”

Here is one of the photos (shot by someone else) that inspired me to go:

Drove east to Pullman to shoot the abandoned Weber Homestead – a famous landmark in the Palouse. Here is what the drive was like:

N 46 47.7081 W 118 23.7492

Had perfect conditions for shooting the homestead: heavy snow on the ground, and snowing lightly.

Weber Homestead

The Palouse area was absolutely stunning in the snow: softly rolling hills covered in snow. Visibility was low, however, and I could not see far, nor get a good photo, but the drive was the most amazing! I need to go back as it starts to clear.

While driving I had a number of flocks of small birds – sparrows or wrens – that rose up from the road in front of the truck and flew clear. It occured to me that since God loves animals (as I have journaled), I bet He has all of the birds named. Just like He has done with the stars.
“He counts the number of the stars;
He gives names to all of them.” Psalms 147:4

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