Tag Archives: Michael Liebhaber

My journey into the wilderness

My journey into the wilderness

Note: I will add my drawings from this trip to my Artwork page and I will also share some of them on Instagram (@michaelliebhaber)

Trip Highlights

  • Double black diamond jeep trail
  • Wilderness with Squirrel, but no Moose
  • Fox almost bites Ranger
Stuffed animals in forest

Batty, Foxy, and Zebe on the way to Badger Lake.

I took a short trip last week to Badger Lake on Mt. Hood (Oregon, USA). My friends came along for company. Badger Lake is one of the few (the only?) wilderness campgrounds to which one can drive on the mountain. It’s a remote, small, spring-fed lake at 4400 feet (1340 meters). The main feature, at least in my opinion, is psychological: I encountered no one on my drive to the lake. When I stopped my Jeep (2003 Liberty 4WD) I was struck by the silence. There was no noise, none. There were no people, no cell service. I was alone.



Dirt road through the forest

A “smooth” part of the route.

I took the road less traveled, the short cut, which requires a high clearance vehicle for the entire 14-ish miles. Most of the road is rough natural terrain (rocks embedded in soil with some pure rock stretches) and clings to steep mountainsides.

Trees lined the road in most places, however, there were a few exposed parts; places where there were no trees below me, the road was just wide enough for my vehicle, and with very steep 800+ foot drop offs below. And then there were the scary bits! Overall, it was a punishing drive on my vehicle and me.

I arrived at the campground just before dark, exactly 100 miles from my start at Scappoose. I selected a spot that had a peek-a-boo view of the lake. I slept in my jeep – water proof, bug proof, bear proof, and (almost) big enough for me. I awoke to find that the setting was very pleasant. The lake was only about 1/3 full because of the dry summer and evaporation. Some people came to kayak in the early morning, but I think they were deterred by the mud surrounding the water. The only wildlife I saw were birds, chipmunks, and an occasional squirrel. Deer and horse tracks crisscrossed the area.

The photos below are at the campsite and the lake.

jeep at campsite   


   

I took the recommended route out (26 miles). Much nicer. I think I saw my jeep smiling. I decided to camp at Trillium Lake. My spot in the tent camp area was a one minute walk from one of the most photographed views of Mt. Hood, so I took picture! The next day I drove up to Historic Timberline Lodge, where I took the close-up photo of the mountain – the one with my traveling companions! They were disappointed. The Forest Service Ranger said they could not climb the mountain because they did not have the proper equipment. My little friends argued that, because they were animals, they did not need equipment. The Ranger countered that real animals don’t talk and are not stuffed. At which point Foxy attempted to bite the Ranger because “That’s what animals do.” Thus ended my visit to Timberline Lodge and Mt. Hood.

Mt. Hood from Trillium Lake.

Mt. Hood from Trillium Lake.


Stuffed animals with Mt Hood in the background.

Hello from Mt. Hood, Oregon!

Fir trees for sale?

watercolor. Walking among fir Trees in Scappoose.



Walking among old Fir trees in Scappoose, Oregon
8in x 10in / Watercolor & Ink / 2018

    Story: These tall, old trees are near the airport; very grand. As I noted before, the land is for sale.

 

All content © copyright 2005-2018, Michael J. Liebhaber

Watercolor – Old Fir trees in Scappoose

Watercolor painting of old fir trees in Scappoose, OR



Old Fir trees in Scappoose, Oregon
8in x 10in / Watercolor & Ink / March 2018

    Story: These tall, old trees are near the airport; very grand. I will hate to see them go – as I noted before, their homeland is for sale.

 

All content © copyright 2005-2018, Michael J. Liebhaber

Farm drainage ditch: 45.8, -122.8

watercolor painting of a Farm Ditch Along East Honeyman Road

Farm Drainage Ditch: 45.8, -122.8
8in x 10in / Watercolor & Ink
February, 2018

    Story: One of many farm ditches near Scappoose. This one is along East Honeyman Road.

 

All content © copyright 2005-2018, Michael J. Liebhaber

Ephemeral pond along Johnson’s Landing Road

Watercolor of Ephemeral Pond Along Johnsons Landing Road



Ephemeral pond along Johnson’s Landing Road, Scappoose, Oregon
8in x 10in / Watercolor & Ink
February, 2018

    Story: Scappoose would be mostly wetlands if it was not for the dike along Multnoma Channel. Durning the rainy season (Oct-July) many fields turn into ponds; a boon to migrating waterbirds.

 

All content © copyright 2005-2018, Michael J. Liebhaber