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Welcome to Western Sights
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Mt. St. Helens
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A few years back, wanderlust took hold of my soul and I realized that I had to explore some of nature's bounty before I became too old to explore and enjoy it. Born and raised in Pennsylvania Dutch country in rural Pennsylvania, I always had a great affinity and appreciation for nature. It was however, my Father's death at age 68 that probably catalyzed the wanderlust simmering inside. I knew that he had not taken the time in his earlier life to see the things that he wanted to see, and now it was too late. When I was growing up, he would get frustrated when he would try to prevent me from making a mistake, but I was of the temperment that I had to learn things on my own. He often said, "Why can't you learn from my mistakes?" Well, this was one I was determined to learn from him, and not repeat it for myself.

I packed up a few things in February of 1998 and headed to Las Cruces, New Mexico. I had never visited, let alone lived in the desert. It was an experience I shall never forget. The vistas were amazing, and it was wonderful seeing mountains unencumbered by growth. Arizona was spectacular. I explored the southwest extensively for the two and a half years I lived there.

After a while however, I began to miss the forest. I had grown up in the woods, and it is like an old friend, never failing to relax and rejuvenate me when I need to escape every day life, so I moved to Eugene, Oregon, and have been there ever since. While the pace of my exploration has slowed down somewhat, there are still many places I get to visit.

Please join me in my explorations. I love to take pictures, and write little narratives, it helps to keep it all fresh in my memory. I'll try to keep the sight interesting and interactive, providing page links or slide shows like the one below. Links to the different pages and slide shows can be found at the left, along with my email address. If there is anything in particular you would like to see, email me and let me know, and I'll see if I can post something.

The Organ Mountains that frame the eastern side of Las Cruces at sunset. The desert southwest is known for its beautiful sunsets and colors. It's hard to believe that these mountains are steely gray by day.

In July of 2002, my lifelong friends Jeff and his wife Sandy came out to visit me in Oregon. One of our trips was to Crater Lake National Park. Here we stand on the top of the caldera on a calm morning the lake like glass and the reflecting like a mirror. Wizard Island is in the foreground.
A picture of Mt. St. Helens a day before my hike to the summit. Although 2000 feet were blown off in the blast on May 18, 1980, it was still a formidable hike for me. The hike down was harder for me than the hike up the mountain, and my thighs were sore for damn near a week.
The Organ Mountains after a winter dusting of snow. The Chihuahuan Desert actually gets quite cool in the winter, most valley floors lie at an altitude above 4500 feet. Snow is still a rare occurrence however, as most precipitaion falls in July and August.
Another view of the lake for which Crater Lake is named. Were it not for the clouds, it would be nearly impossible to distinguish the water from the reflection of the sky.
Fog settles in the valleys surrounding Mt. St. Helens on July 4th, 2003. In the distance, Mt. Hood in Oregon raises it's diamond shaped peak above the middle Cascades, sun glistening off it's flanks.
Mt. McGlaughlin, visible from Medford, Oregon on a snowy winter winter day. The vast majority of precipitation in the Pacific Northwest falls from late fall until late spring.
The sun setting at the appropriately named Sunset Bay in Coos Bay Oregon.
There's a reason the New Mexico is so popular with artists. The colors of some of the cliffs and mountains are nothing short of breathtaking. This is outside Abiqui in northern New Mexico on my way to Cahma to take the Chama and Toltec Scenic Railroad.
The rocky coast of Oregon is renowned for it's beauty, as is plain to see. It's not a swimming coastline however. The water is cold even in late summer, and rarely do temperatures exceed the high seventies, with a stiff ocean breeze blowing constantly.
A winter scene along Dead Indian Memorial Highway. The conifers of the Pacific Northwest are perfect for sloughing off snow, essential for survival in this land of heavy snow.
Another view of a gorgeous sunset at Sunset Bay.