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March 6
Besides roaring in like a lion, with lots of wind and snow, it's just more of the same on the weather front so far...
But we got out to the turnaround at the end of the lake, and here are two pictures from Saturday:

minifalls at Birch Creek


Sunset and night skiing on Mt. Spokane St. Park, which was probably 5 miles away from the turnaround...  The trees in the foreground are slowly eroding the view of the mountain...

March 9

We got another 6 inches of snow the other night, and now we have snow turning to rain for the next few days, so at least we won't have to shovel...
We saw a hawk and a bald eagle on our walk today--hawks aren't seen in the winter here, and eagles are scarce after the salmon finish spawning in December...


March 11  Here's some of our animals who admire my color laser printer: cats and the printer video
I spent the middle part of the day making bread and soup for church tomorrow.  Then it was time to take Butters for a good walk, but it had started drizzling.  We walked along the lake road, with water running down the road, but Butters headed up the first deer trail to the ridge, and I decided to follow him.  Although there's still up to a foot and a half of snow, the deer trails are compacted, and the uphill climb got me warmed up...  An eagle flew over about 30 feet away, and perched in a tree roughly at our height.  We saw a half dozen deer, their white tails wagging as they headed away from us...  We were both soaked by the time we got back, so that led to giving Butters a shower...  Altogether a good outing...

March 13

We hiked the ridge again, drizzle again, rain predicted until the ark's a moverin'   Goldeneye ducks and geese are passing through on their semiannual commute...
This is the way they look normally:


Here they are with the male tilting his head back and making wooing noises:


Even I wouldn't be able to say what it was unless I'd been there...

March 16.  Today the sun came out, which accelerated melting so there is flooding along rivers in the area.  When the sun isn't out, there is rain, which accelerates melting blah blah blah.  I've decided to record some hymns with singing, since I've mostly just made videos of the tunes on guitar.  Just in time for St. Patrick's Day, I tried  I bind unto myself this day.   It is very tough to sing, particularly while playing the challenging tune.  It took about 5 tries to make it through it..  Happy St. Pat's Day...
   March 19
I had to make a trip to Spokane today, and with the rivers running so high we had to see Post Falls and Spokane Falls.  Post Falls is upriver 30 miles from Spokane Falls:

It was running so high the "falls" hardly dropped through the dam...


This is the view of Spokane Falls from the Monroe Street bridge...  The tiny people to the right help establish the sense of scale...

March 22
The rain and snow are not compatible, so the snow is going fast... 

This is not a cheesecake photo from PlayDog magazine--Butters gets hot running around the hills and he stretches out on the remaining snow piles for a quick cooldown.

When we headed up the ridge this (probably) merlin was watching from a treetop...


A couple days ago we saw the first buttercups and spring beauties.  But today was the first grass widow.  Soon they'll be covering the ridge...

 March 26
We walked the main circuit of the Empire Trails a couple days ago--5 miles with lots of up and down, still snow in patches...

This is Bedrock Creek, where the water flows right on the bedrock... 



This is Butters, on a bridge after 4 miles.  Quite happy...



Birch Creek, probably the largest tributary to the lake after Brickel Creek...


These are the first American wigeons we've seen in Idaho, on the Pend Oreille River on the way home from church today...  From the bird maps I think they're just passing through...

 March 31
I'd taken Butters for a two mile hike earlier in the day, then went to Farragut Park on this calm sunny day and ended up hiking from the boat launch to the park entrance (around 4 miles). The walk got more interesting as evening drew near and there were a multitude of trails to choose from (and no park map).  But we made it and nothing worse than sore feet happened, and on the plus side this photo:


That's the view from the shoreline trail...

Books read and other media of note
Portugese Irregular Verbs by Alexander McCall Smith.  An antihero on the lines of The Confederacy of Dunces,  less broadly played...

Tears of the Giraffe  by Alexander McCall Smith. 

Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman.  He manages to give the remaining fragments of norse lore a coherent structure and helps explain part of the Marvel Universe thereby...  Not much theology to live by in the norse religion, more to die by and be tricked by...

When I think of other great humor writers besides PG Wodehouse, I wouldn't have thought of Alexander McCall Smith, as I only started reading the No. 1 Detective series recently, and they are light in tone but no belly laughs. Then I got "Unusual Uses of Olive Oil" and McCall Smith, from his own experience of being a professor, absolutely nails the comedy in a professor whose one mark to fame is a book on Portugese Irregular Verbs. If Inspector Clousseau had taken to pedagogy instead of sleuthing Herr Dr Dr Igenfeld would have been the result... Now I have to backtrack and read the other three in the series, and I notice he has several other series worth checking out. And no, I don't represent the publisher of the aforesaid...

No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency by Alexander  McCall Smith.  I'd previously glanced at this series and decided the African names or honorifics like Mma and Rra were a bit much, but this time I got over that and am looking forward to reading more in the series...  It slightly resembles the Tony Hillerman novels in adopting a native persona...

The Girl from Venice by Martin Cruz Smith.   Set at the end of the war in Italy, a compelling story of intrigue and love but a bit too complex for my liking...

Anti-Ice by Stephen Baxter.  I'm not fond of steam-punk sci fi, but this one felt totally retro Jules Verne, and kept me wondering where it was going...

Paw Enforcement by Diane Kelly.  The only romance author I read is Janet Evanovich, because she is also incredibly funny.  But I picked this book off the library paperbacks shelf because it was about dogs and funny.   It wasn't as funny as I'd hoped, and the romance was pretty subdued, so it seemed a pale reflection of Evanovich.  But it read well...



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