Over Mother’s Day weekend, we ventured out to another nearby nature area we’ve been meaning to explore for a while: the Tualatin River National Wildlife Refuge. Once again, it was an eye-opener — all this amazing natural beauty within just a few miles of our home!
The vistas were completely different from last weekend’s hike. For one thing, it was mostly flat. For another, there was water – lots of water. Marshlands and wetlands and a river, which meant of course BIRDS!
Aren’t they beautiful? I’ve had a special place in my heart for Canada geese ever since I lived in Concord, Massachusetts. When I was growing up there, our house backed up to a conservation area called the “Old Calf Pasture.” My sisters and I could run out our back door, through the woods, and straight into 500 acres of meadows and forest nestled by a river. Talk about the best backyard in the world!
One day, my dad went down to the river to go fishing, and came home with a goose instead. It had gotten tangled in some nylon line of some sort and was scared to bits. Somehow, he managed to throw his jacket over it and carry it back to our house, where my sisters and I watched as he gently clipped it free. We wanted to keep it as a pet, of course, but my father explained that it was a wild animal, and needed to go back to its family.
And if you’re wondering, yes, there’s quite a bit of Jess Delaney in me!
Our hike last weekend, which started out in the hot sun through meadows that reminded me of that pasture, ended up on a cooler, shadier trail through the forest.