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Posts Tagged ‘vegetables’

Saturday mornings find us at the Klamath Falls farmers market with cooler bag in hand. We look forward to the growing season and have been going to these markets for many years, but have found that the trend is to sell more crafts and less produce. That is certainly the case at the Klamath Falls market. There is a limited variety of produce from just a few venders, most of whom seem to be backyard veggie gardeners. Limited quantity, variety and hit or miss quality does not, however, keep the price down. We pay top dollar for produce grown without pesticides and herbicides, irregardless of a given gardener’s skill, so we have learned to get there early, walk the market to inspect all options and then make our selections while choices are still available.
Wow, that sounded kind of negative, didn’t it?! We may not be happy about limited choice, but we do get some great vegetables at the market and are happy to have the opportunity to get truly fresh produce.

Klamath Falls farmers market

We found a very clean laundry that has never been busy when we’ve gone which makes the weekly chore rather pleasant. We settle in with a cup of coffee and our iPads and the time flies by.

Laundry day

Geothermal heat has been harnessed for heating buildings since 1900, especially in the downtown historic district.

We took the poodles in for grooming. It’s always fun to be able to see their faces again.

Moore Park is beside Upper Klamath Lake.
Driving along Lakeshore Drive, we come around a curve in the road and see a bright green field and lots of huge shade trees. The park, with its grassy playing fields and picnicking areas, is an odd sight in the arid landscape and owes its existence to heavy, daily watering. We don’t stay in this section, but park our car and head up away from the lake, into the dry, wooded hills. We may see the occasional runner, walker or biker, but it’s lightly used and amazing for it’s close proximity to an urban area. We think Klamath Falls residents are really lucky to have this park and the Link River trail just beside it. We often walk both in order to do a loop.

Moore Park

Sprinklers shoot water in greats arcs. We have sprinted through them to cool down on a hot day. The tremendous amount of water provides great habitat for midges which are out in force after a watering. We usually get back from a walk about then to find our car covered with little, bright green bugs.

This is not a grainy photograph, but clouds upon clouds of midges. The whole hillside (most of which is out of frame to the left) was aswarm that morning and the masses of midges made a quiet, persistent humming noise, like the sound a transformer makes.

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Our haul this morning from the farmers market in Mount Vernon.

We love fresh carrot tops in split pea soup so we made that for lunch.  The garlic is just superb, as was the onion.  The beets will go into blender drinks, their tops in our salads. This is a great place to live for those who like organic, locally grown whole foods. We shop the farmers markets, the Co-op and sometimes make trips to the small farms in Skagit Valley and on the nearby islands to get organic produce, eggs, cheese and meats. In Alaska we loved the access to fresh Alaskan fish, shrimp and crab, but missed the variety and freshness of the produce here.

It will be hard to leave, but we have developed such a taste and preference for fresh, organic whole foods that it will still be a priority for us and we look forward to discovering new farms, farmers markets and natural foods stores wherever we go.

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Tis the season for food in Skagit valley. The Co-op’s produce section is bursting with fresh, beautiful vegetables and fruits, farmers’ markets have begun their seasons in the various towns and the fresh fish is coming in from Alaska. Spot prawns will be available in about a week. We finished a half flat of local strawberries in just 3 days – so sweet and ripe.
We’ve taken some nice walks in Island and Skagit counties. It has been a rainy spring and we often have trails mostly to ourselves as we walk in full rain gear with waterproof binoculars to hand.

Along the Cascade Trail

On a walk beside Padilla Bay we just about ran into a weasel who had just caught a mouse or vole. The poor thing wasn’t quite dead since we interrupted the hunt, but weasels are quite fearless and this one retreated only for moment (despite 2 humans and 2 dogs) then came back to finish the kill and carry it away. Practically under our feet! Didn’t need binocs, but looking through them provided an amazing clear, close-up view. Like watching a nature show.

Padilla Bay At lowest tide

Skagit River Valley “Upriver” near Lyman

Band-tailed pigeons were another interesting sight on another day. Physically similar in shape to the non-native Rock pigeon, but behavior and size had us guessing. They are big and this flock of about a dozen was silent and very wary in the deep woods upriver.

And yesterday we saw not one, but three Barred owls. All together, a family. We interrupted the parent who was feeding two young. They all flew a short distance in differing directions to settle high in tall trees. This forest area is about a mile’s walk from our RV park. The fairly quiet road we walked along passes through this wood on a steep course down to Similk Bay. The woods drop sharply off to one side of the road so near the top of the hill we’re walking beside the tops of those tall, old trees. The owls, therefore, were easily viewed. We waited for a while, watching. The three owls kept their eyes on us too. In one tree, the parent, clutching what appeared to be a large, dead rat in its talons, called occasionally. Our patience was rewarded when the three joined up on a branch still in clear view. The momma/papa began stripping pieces of flesh from the rat and feeding them to one youngster while the other made hissing noises until it’s turn came.

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