Sunday, August 15, 2010

Still alive!!

The past couple of weeks have been pretty slow still. There is a lot of opposition to the project that is still  holding us up. We are already several months behind schedule and that is gonna make this rapidly approaching winter  "fantastic"... The "Axe Men" have moved in and started logging some of the areas that we have permission to begin working in. My job since they have moved in is to work with a biologist to survey and keep track of any raptors "Eagles and Hawks" that are in the area, and make sure that they aren't being disturbed or becoming too agitated by all of the commotion in the area. We have also been marking noxious weed areas, noxious weeds are plants that are invasive and can take over an area.  We have to make sure the weeds aren't spread by any of the construction activity. So anyways, I've been learning a lot about birds and weeds the past couple of weeks. It's pretty neat I guess...

I have been getting in a good bit of running also. I am finally feeling really good, I have been battling a foot injury and a groin strain for over a year and it has really limited my running during that time. But slowly over the last 2 months I feel like I am back, and I run virtually pain free now. Its actually pretty weird and almost feels like something is wrong.

Here are some pictures from this morning's run. Remember to click on them to view them fullsize, they look a lot better that way.

Can anyone tell me that this isn't a beautiful lake??

Here is the view from higher up.

Normally you would see Mt. Shasta in the background here, but there are some fires in the area and it was too smoky this morning.

Here is part of the Gnarly trail that I took on my 15 mile run to be able to enjoy these views. I didn't see one other person. I love days like that.

We had a new slate floor installed  in our kitchen over the past 2 weeks. Rebecca applied the final coat of sealer last night, and our next door neighbor helped her move the appliances back in this morning. I can't wait to see it in person. It looks great Rebecca!

Here is a close up, I see my Jeep is still happily waiting for me in the garage!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Slow week.

This past week hasn't been particularly interesting, mostly everything that we need to do surveying wise for this project to take place has been done. Mostly we just spend a lot of time in the mountains double and triple checking things.

We did finally get a bit of good news yesterday morning. The Obama administration has issued us a Limited Notice to Proceed. What they have done is given us permission to construct approximately 50 miles of the 675 total miles of the pipeline. The 50 miles is all broken up in to little chunks. A half mile here, a 1/4 mile there. This is kind of a big headache that is just going to make this project last even longer because instead of starting in one spot and working all the way through, we have to keep jumping all over the place. Given the terrain out here, that takes a lot of time.

I am happy that we can finally start, but the government regulations are making it a pain. I understand why people are opposed to pipelines. I am very opposed to pipelines... I've heard all about the Enbridge pipeline that just leaked in to the Kalamazoo river. Everyone wants to drive cars and have heat in their house in the winter. Pipelines are part of that equation... I can only do my best to make sure that the route is the least environmentally harmful as possible.

Here is a cattle drive that was taking place on the main road coming in to Lakeview on Thursday morning.

Here is a picture of some cool horses on a ranch just east of town.

Here I am this morning leaving to go on my run. This is the Deschutes river trail as it leaves downtown Bend and heads out towards the wilds.

Here is where it actually branches off in to a single track.

And a picture of my shadow as I run up the trail through the backyard of one of the lucky residents of Bend, oregon.