Friday’s weather forecast was very encouraging, and the blue skies and lack of clouds suggested meteorological accuracy. With Amy now on board we decided to undertake a hike on the West Fork Wallowa River Trail. The trailhead was a mile from our campsite, and we appreciated the convenience. I wore shorts and a fishing shirt with rolled up sleeves, and Friday was a rare occasion, when I exhibited less skin coverage than Amy and Jane.
The round trip hike was nearly six miles, and it tracked the West Fork of the Wallowa River. The small stream crossings were manageable, and the river crashed and tumbled its way down the high gradient river bed throughout our trek. We marveled at the powerful forces that nature can generate.
Our turnaround point was a crude log bridge that connected the West Fork Trail with the Ice Lake Trail. A group of four young women and a dog were just ahead of us, and we paused to watch them carefully cross the raging river. A large log spanned the river, and it was flattened on the top to create a wide surface for walking. As an added safety feature, a rustic log railing was positioned on the upstream side of the log to create a makeshift hand rail. The bridge was our chosen turnaround point, so we did not test our balancing skills.
The return hike was uneventful, and we returned to our campsite for lunch in the early afternoon. The free concerts at the trailer stage were scheduled to begin at 5PM, and we had some time to kill, so we made the short drive to Joseph, OR, so Amy could browse the small town. Joseph is a small resort town with a few restaurants, shops and bars. Quite a few eye catching sculptures are on display throughout the Main Street area. We stopped at a few shops and purchased some additional grocery items at the market, before we returned to the Wallowa Lake State Park for music.
Our threesome strolled to the trailer stage by the marina, but the parking lot and stage were devoid of human beings, so we entered the marina store and inquired about the free state parks day festivities. A young man behind the counter informed us that the concert was moved to an indoor picnic pavilion near the bridge due to threatening weather. With this change in venue Jane, Amy and I carried our chairs to the wooden pavilion and joined a small crowd of spectators.
A pair of young women played some delightful folk tunes for an hour, and then they relinquished the stage to Laney Lou and the Bird Dogs. This band was a blend of bluegrass and country; and Amy, Jane and I enjoyed them immensely. Since my return from Oregon I researched Laney Lou and discovered that they are from Bozeman, MT, and they released six albums.
After the concert we began to hike back to our campsite with the intention of making spaghetti, but along the way we encountered a taco truck. The purveyors of Mexican food were smart in their choice of location, and we could not resist the lure of authentic street tacos. After our impulse dinner we returned to our campsite and mellowed out with another campfire and a game of Oh Hell. Another fun and eventful day in the Wallowas was in the books.