Watching Snow Fall at a Mountain Lake: Weird and Wonderful Oregon #LandscapePhotography #NaturePhotography #NatureBeauty

The Hush of Winter…
Weird and wonderful Oregon


In the tranquil embrace of winter, a mountain lake finds itself veiled in an ethereal silence, a sanctuary of serene beauty where time seems to hold its breath.

The air, crisp and clear, carries the scent of snowflakes gently cascading from the heavens. The world becomes a canvas painted in shades of white and blue, as the lake, adorned in its icy cloak, mirrors the splendor of the snow-capped peaks that guard its shores.

A hush descends upon this frozen expanse, a symphony of stillness that wraps around the land like a soft embrace. The only sounds are the faint whispers of the breeze weaving through the frosted reeds and the occasional echo of a distant bird’s song, punctuating the quietude.

Nature’s artistry adorns the landscape: delicate frost crystals embellish every surface, while the ice, a translucent mosaic, shelters secrets beneath its glacial sheen. Time seems suspended, as if the world has retreated into a serene slumber, awaiting the gentle nudge of spring’s awakening touch.

In this winter sanctuary, the lake is a mirror to the soul, reflecting the beauty of stillness and the majesty of tranquility. It is a place where the heart finds solace, where the spirit dances in the purity of the moment, and where the hush of winter whispers secrets of timeless grace.

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Behind the Rifters Series: Unveiling the Real-Life Inspiration for the Paleo Institute! #fantasy #steampunk #paleontology


A beacon for those hungry for knowledge and adventure.

popular fantasy steampunk series, the rifters, paleo institute

The Oregon Paleo Lands Institute Center in Fossil, Oregon, serves as the muse behind the Rifters’ Paleo Institute. Much like its real-world counterpart, the Paleo Institute in the series fosters exploration of the past and present landscapes. Inspired by the Center’s offerings—trips, classes, and adventures throughout the region—the Rifters’ Paleo Institute echoes the spirit of discovery, inviting readers to delve into history, fine-tune skills, and embrace the vast ecosystem of their world.



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The Wonder of Winter: Bend Oregon #LandscapePhotography #NaturePhotography #NatureBeauty

A View of Pilot Butte

Weird and wild Oregon

In the hush of winter’s breath, whispers of celestial wonder descend from the heavens above. Snowflakes, delicate and pure, pirouette in the crisp air, each a crystalline masterpiece crafted by nature’s artistry.

They blanket the world in a soft embrace, draping landscapes in a quilt of glistening white. With each gentle touch, they weave a tapestry of serenity, adorning branches and rooftops alike, transforming the mundane into a scene of ethereal enchantment.

Silent and serene, they dance their way to the earth, creating a symphony of tranquility as they settle, painting a portrait of silent elegance across the horizon. A tranquil stillness envelops the world, as if time itself pauses to marvel at this breathtaking spectacle.

The snow, a tender reminder of nature’s grace, bestows upon the world a quiet magic, inviting us to see beauty in simplicity and find solace in the peaceful embrace of winter’s embrace.


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The trees stand as storytellers, each leaf a page in a grand saga of life and transition. #LandscapePhotography #NaturePhotography #NatureBeauty

Deep in the Umpqua Forest in the Casdades…
Weird and Wild Oregon

In the heart of the Umpqua National Forest, autumn unfolds like a vivid tapestry painted by the hand of time. Here, the trees stand as storytellers, each leaf a page in a grand saga of life and transition.

Amidst the emerald guardians, the forest becomes a living cathedral, where sunlight weaves through the branches, dappling the earth below in a mosaic of gold and amber. The crisp air hums with the whispers of transformation, as the trees, adorned in their vibrant attire, prepare for their seasonal ballet.

Maples, like flames in the forest’s cathedral, ignite in shades of fiery reds and oranges, illuminating the woodland stage with their fervent passion. Birch trees stand in elegant contrast, donning robes of buttery yellows that sway in the gentle autumnal breeze.

Every leaf, a tiny vessel of life, pirouettes and descends, performing a graceful waltz to the forest floor. There, a new chapter begins as they form a vibrant tapestry, creating a mosaic carpet beneath the giants that birthed them.

The world lives on these trees, in the stories etched upon their bark, the whispers carried by the wind through their branches, and the symphony of colors they orchestrate. Life here is a cycle, a dance of seasons that paints the landscape in hues of nostalgia and anticipation, reminding us of the beauty in letting go and the promise of renewal.



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Discovering the Charm of Antelope, Oregon #NaturePhotography Photography #ghosttown

It’s Spooktober! Let’s visit a ghost town. How about Antelope?

off the beaten path Oregon

Amidst the rolling hills and rugged landscapes of central Oregon, Antelope has a big story to tell. This quaint town is a hidden gem, offering a unique blend of history, natural beauty, and a sense of timelessness.

A Glimpse into Antelope’s History

In the mid-19th century, Antelope began as a station along the wagon road connecting The Dalles on the Columbia River with gold mines near Canyon City. After about 1870, the wagon road became known as The Dalles Military Road. When the highway was moved, Antelope became a quiet town of ranchers.

Is most notorious chapter came in the early 1980s when it briefly became the home of the Rajneeshpuram commune led by Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh. A circle of leading members of the Rajneeshpuram Oregon commune were arrested for crimes including an attempted assassination plot to murder U.S. Attorney Charles H. Turner as part of the United States’s first recorded bio-terror attack calculated to influence the outcome of a local election in their favour; the effort ultimately failed. Salmonella bacteria were deployed to infect salad products in local restaurants and shops, which poisoned several hundred people.

hidden gem of Oregon, Antelope

Remnants of the Past

Antelope has many old building.

Oregon ghost towns, Antelope


weird and wild Oregon


hidden gems of Oregon


Antelope offers breathtaking vistas…

exploring Oregon, Antelope


And creepy ones… I envisioned this school when writing the second book in the Rifters series.

off the beaten path, Antelope, Oregon

Antelop was an awesome place to visit!


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Off the Beaten Path: Ashwood, Oregon #NaturePhotography #NatureBeauty #photography

Ashwood, Oregon: A Haunting Glimpse into Central Oregon’s Past

off the beaten path Oregon, Ashwood

In the heart of Central Oregon, Ashwood stands as a silent sentinel of a bygone era. Once a bustling town, it now lies in ruins, a ghost town echoing with the whispers of history.

A Brief History

Ashwood’s story begins in the late 1800s when it was founded as a homesteading community. Its proximity to the Deschutes River and the promise of fertile land attracted settlers looking to make a new life in the wilderness. By the turn of the 20th century, Ashwood had blossomed into a thriving town with a school, post office, and several businesses.

Oregon ghost town, Ashwood

The Decline

However, Ashwood’s glory days were short-lived. The town’s fortunes waned as the timber industry declined, and the construction of nearby highways diverted traffic away from its once-bustling streets. The closure of the post office in the 1970s marked the symbolic end of an era. Today, Ashwood stands as a shadow of its former self, a place where time has seemingly stopped.

wierd and wild oregon

Exploring Ashwood

Visiting Ashwood is like stepping into a time capsule. The dilapidated buildings that line its streets are a testament to its past, with some structures dating back to the early 1900s. The old schoolhouse, in particular, is a hauntingly beautiful relic, its walls covered in graffiti and its windows long shattered. The eerie silence that envelops Ashwood is broken only by the whispering wind, lending an almost otherworldly quality to the experience.

off the beaten path Oregon, Ashwood

The Legends

Of course, no ghost town is complete without its legends. Ashwood has its fair share of ghost stories, from phantom footsteps echoing in the night to whispers of long-lost settlers still roaming the area. While skeptics may dismiss these tales as mere folklore, they add an extra layer of intrigue to this already enigmatic place.

off the beaten path Oregon, Ashwood

wierd and wild Oregon, Ashwood

abandoned places Ashwood, Oregon



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