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Thursday, October 10, 2013

FOLKWAYS IN THE PACIFIC NORTHWEST


Bark of unidentified tree

Well, I have now been living in Vancouver, Washington for just about three weeks. I have been busy getting to know my "new to me" immediate area and am still getting lost in the various neighborhoods. This is a very populated area, unlike my previous residence in Kentucky where everything was either rural or small town and definitely fewer folks. The difference between the two sections of the country is like night and day.

This move is taking some "getting used to." I am labeling this period as "Transition."

This morning I got online, pulled up lots of material on Washington and Oregon. Portland, Oregon rides on the border of Vancouver, Washington. Western Oregon and western Washington have rainforest environments (which means lots of rain for my area). Both states reside in the Pacific Northwest. This is my geography lesson for today.

I am familiar with Oregon as I lived there off and on for several years I plan to write about and photograph it as well as Washington. 

The tree bark above is a close-up photo from the tall tree shown at the bottom of this post. I took the photos when my son and I visited Mount St. Helen's last weekend. Being outstandingly handsome how could I not resist taking its picture.

Does anyone know the species of this tree? I looked it up in some inadequate ID books and thought perhaps it might be Silver Fir? It fits the description -- a dome top  made up of horizontal branches -- also a smooth whitish bark -- growing very tall with only the upper third supporting foliage. 

Lots to find out about the Pacific Northwest -- rainforest ecology, farming, lumbering, traditions, folkways, architecture, native culture, and much more. Should be fun!

~ ~ barbara


 Is this a Silver Fir?





32 comments:

  1. Such a transition! I've gone from congested to rural. I could go back again.
    I hope you have an answer to your tree.

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    1. Rita from Sketchbook Wanderings left a good recommendation on transitions, "their easier if one accepts them for what they are." Apparently you have the ability to live rural or city -- nice that you can change so easily. Nice to hear these words from both of you -- barbara

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    2. Dear Barbara, I'm glad I could pass on the wisdom of accpatance that was given to me...However, I can't help but notice that I mispelled "They're" & wrote their....still, acceptance does make it easier to live in the moment rather than the past or future...

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    3. Your words, to live in the moment, were valuable to me as I moved through this transition period. I thank you for that -- barbara

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  2. This is such an adventure! I'm excited for your new photos!

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    1. turquoisemoon -- I think we both recently had some adventures. I might have passed you on the road on your way to Yellowstone. thanks for stopping -- barbara

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  3. So happy to see that you are back out exploring & researching. Yes, transition periods, some one once told me their easier if one accepts them for what they are. Mine was easier, bigger city to small town. It amazes me, the regional differences in this country...unlike countries in Europe, we speak the same language. Re. your note: New England Autumn, yes, so colorful & yes, smells so sweet (away from the cities).

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    1. Rita -- Thanks for the words of wisdom about transitions. I have written down your words about accepting them for what they are. So you have moved to a small town. Small towns gave me a feeling of spaciousness. I haven't decided what Vancouver will present. I have lived in rural and small to mid-sized towns most of my life. I have a feeling that I will end up again in one of those rural to small town arenas. But, there are positives about big and small places. thanks -- barbara

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  4. I do not know east coast trees, but your new exploration of the area is going to be fun for he restof us I am thinking.

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    1. Tabor -- I'm now living on the west coast in Washington state. I hope I didn't confuse everybody, Scouting out this territory will require some real hound dog snooping. thanks for your comment -- barbara

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  5. I love your new header photo! And might the tree be a yellow birch? A fir would have needles, does this, or is it deciduous? It's such fun discovering for ourselves all these beauties in the world ...

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    1. Teresa -- It is a conifer and after I wrote my post I discovered the Oregon State University site that seemed to clearly define the tree as a Silver Fir. Hope this is others opinion too. Thanks for the nice comment on my new header photo. -- barbara

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  6. Welcome to the Pacific Northwest and yes, transitions are always tricky I think. Good luck in your transitioning!

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    1. dapnepurpus -- Nice wishes from a Pacific North-westerner. I read your post and it clearly made the case that there are ways to define a life in the Washington area. thanks -- barbara

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  7. I admire the way you are handling this transition. Embracing all your area has to offer.

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    1. Michelle -- thanks for the nice thoughts -- hopefully I will find lots of material that will reflect the cultural traditions and historic parts of this area. -- barbara

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  8. Hi Barbara, I'm here too! We moved from Sacramento a month ago. We'll have to meet sometime!

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    1. Melissa -- I found your beautiful blog and was pleasantly surprised when I saw the words Lake Michigan. It's part of my old stomping grounds when I was a young adult. Yes, meeting with you would be nice. thanks for stopping by -- barbara

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  9. Beautiful photos again -- the header and the tree bark! I greatly enjoyed your exploration of Eastern Kentucky which was somewhat familiar to me. I've never been to the Northwest, so your photos and explorations will be a new virtual world. Already I'm fascinated. ... Yes, transitions are challenging but also open us to new pleasures. I transitioned from crowded NYC to very different Cape Cod - big change but also wonderful.

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    1. June -- Kentucky was very traditional -- finding stories and photos there was always around the corner. I have a feeling that this area will be more challenging. I'm sure my slant of presenting photos and stories on my blog will change somewhat as I uncover the local patterns here in the Northwest. You transitioned from big city to beach community -- quite a change. However, you appear to have gathered in your local community with open arms. You are quite a flexible person. In this fast paced world of today it is an asset to be flexible. thanks for the comments -- barbara

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  10. I am avidly watching your transition!!! Isn't amazing exploring our country

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    1. Kay -- Lewis and Clark highway is not to far from where I am living. They kinda remind me that exploring is not just for pioneers but also for us modern critters. thanks for your comment -- barbara

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  11. Looking forward to your adventures and discoveries in The Great Northwest. Having visited my cousin many times in Portland Or. (one of the few "big" cities I came to like), the Olympic Peninsula and Vancouver Island other areas I liked I can't wait to see you take on it all....:)

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    1. troutbirder - In fact I will be taking a short trip to Portland tomorrow. I have been there a few times, very much liked it then -- but it was many years ago. I always liked Oregon for their land development policies which are very strict. Also, they have bike paths along their roadsides. Someday I want to visit the Olympic Peninsula and Vancouver Island. thanks for your very nice words in your comment -- barbara

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  12. Well, just being a Northener born and raised gave me pause when moving to Deep South. Slowed my pace a bit and my cooking changed. I do miss some things from my "other" life, but it's all in the transition. Enjoy Barbara, enjoy!

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    1. Diane -- Quite a transition -- north to south. They are really very different. You seem to have adjusted very well. I do believe it is all in the transition too. I am enjoying what I have experienced so far. The mountains are spectacular here -- can see Mount Hood from my new city. thanks Diane -- barbara

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  13. By the way,: conifers produce cones. Try looking up malalucus tree, paper bark. Had 4 in my yard one time..

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    1. Diane -- Yes, conifers do produce cones -- this area has many species of conifers, unlike the Appalachians that were mainly deciduous trees. Of course I like both types of trees. Someday you should visit the Pacific Northwest -- thanks -- barbara

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    2. I believe you would like the mountains and plant life of the Pacific Northwest. You can pick and choose many places to see -- lots of national parks and friendly folks.I have not been to Vancouver Island or Olympia yet, but I visited the ocean last week. Lots to do in the Pacific Northwest. -- barbara

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  14. Love the new header! Of course one of the beat ways to get to know your new home is by learning the indigenous flora and fauna and finding out where the water comes from -- where the rivers and streams are (or were.)

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    1. Vicki -- yes, I agree with your words about how to find out about my new home. Today was an all day road trip of discovery of the Oregon coast. I will hit the library next week along with online info to find out the indigenous natural features of what I was looking at today. thank for the suggestion -- barbara

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