Posted in Crows on the Road, Green River Trail

Kent Eagles & Crows Check up

On the Green River to the west side of Kent, the city has converted the old country roads on both banks to trails. You may have seen this in my series about what I saw walking the Green River Trail.

This President Day it was sunny but chilly and I set out to do one of the loops that they have created. My path was where a small foot bridge crosses the river to the west bank. I parked my car on the east side of the bridge and to my delight the crow family I saw before were there. The picture above shows the area of the bridge. Here is a link to that prior post (about year and half ago) which among other topics talks about this family by the bridge.

Green River Trail – Country Road & Crow Family

They were also there when I returned at the end of my walk. Here is one of them hanging out watching me throw the peanuts for them.

Crow near pedestrian bridge over Green River

Off I went across the bridge. I could see through the metal grating as I crossed the river. That freaked me out a bit and then I hit a grate that rattled. That got me hanging onto the rail from there on. I was going to walk down the west side of the river and then turn around. That bridge freaked me out so much, I decided I would walk down to the next pedestrian bridge and then walk back on the east bank trail.

That turned out to be a great thing because I came to where I had seen the young eagle a year and half ago. This is an established pair in two poplar trees. Here is the blog post to give you some context.

Kent Eaglet

This set of babies were raised in the tree to the left. The family has moved into a new nest on the right tree leaving the old nest as a nice memory.

Eagle nest trees in Kent, WA on Green River

When I approached the area, I heard a big bird making some calls. Not the usual eagle screech but certainly not a chickadee sound. That was when I saw one of them up in the tree.

Eagle in tree calling for mate

I then walked on down the trail and when the tree got back in view I was able to see the pair in the nest.

Eagle trees in Kent, WA
Eagle mates on their nest.

A lot of non-bird people do not realize that many bird species have staked out homes and territories just like we humans. This revisit to the Green River trails confirmed for me that both the crows and eagles are returning again and again.  They are not only raising families here but have found good food sources. Why would they give up a good thing?

 

Posted in Green River Trail

Singing Robin

A sound of sweet melody drew my attention the other day.

I was on the Green River Trail in Kent photographing a run down barn and burnt out old house. Kind of depressing since those nearly 100 year old buildings had been used by a company for storage. Regulated to the back yard junk heap.

This little guys singing brought me right out of my musing on how times had changed along the river bank.

When you look at this next photo I bet you can even hear him singing!

DSCN9588

Posted in Green River Trail

Enchanted Place

The Green River Trail strangely continues beyond where the sign says it ends. Yes I thought I had come to it’s end. To find the next leg along the river, I traversed a road bordered by a pallet company and a tow yard. An old gated road opened before me and I followed it next to the river.

As I rounded a corner I was drawn in by a grove of redwoods – aka Sequoias.

Redwoods grove
Redwood grove

They are a tree of magic that creates an enchanted forest scene. One expects a gnome or fairy to step from around the trunk.

Magical Redwoods
Magical Sequoia

These trees are not native to the Kent Valley and had been planted here more than a hundred years ago. A few other heritage trees were close by which leads me to believe this was an early homestead or farm. They were someone’s entrance sentinels.

I lingered here and inhaled the peace they create.

The Enchantedness did not end in the grove.  As I exited the trees I discovered an art installation. This small grove is sandwiched between the Green River and an active railway. The art is five heron like birds fashioned from iron on poles. Some research of them turned up nothing and makes me wonder how old they are.  Were they related to the old homestead?  or did the railroad put them there for their passengers enjoyment.

Redwoods & Bird Art
Redwoods & Bird Art
Mystery Bird Art - Green River Trail
Mystery Bird Art – Green River Trail

DSCN9551

Serendipity is alive wherever I roam. Magic and new things only await us around the next corner.

Posted in Green River Trail

Wild Pink

Spring has brought us pink flowers on a wild current shrub. Its formal name is Ribes sanguineum Pursh or better known as red-flower currant.

Red Flower Current on Frager Road
Red Flower Current on Frager Road

This is just off  Frager Road in Kent, WA.  It is not open to car traffic in this area, so it has gone wild on both sides of the old river road.

DSCN8677
Pink Flowers in the PNW brush
Posted in Green River Trail, My Duwamish Adventure

Duwamish meanderings in Southpark

This post will round out my investigation of Southpark’s Duwamish River Bank by showing you some of the varied sights I encountered.  This ranges from cranes, houses, warehouses, and of course the river.

When I went straight at the Cloverdale & 14th Ave intersection, so I could drive down by the Southpark Marina, I encountered a murder of crows in a tree on Dallas and 16th.  Little did I know that when I returned several hours later that the murder would be gathering in mass here. This must have been the guard troop left behind to secure their home territory.

Crows greeted me in Southpark
Crows greeted me in Southpark

I started by parking near the 14th Avenue South Bridge and followed South Orr Street. This street and South Dallas Avenue both curve unlike the rest of the grid layout in Southpark.This is because before the Duwamish was straightened there was an oxbow between the two roads. A definition of what that is comes from Wiki:

An oxbow lake is a U-shaped body of water that forms when a wide meander from the main stem of a river is cut off, creating a free-standing body of water. This land form is so named for its distinctive curved shape, resembling the bow pin of an oxbow.

I turned onto 12th and headed towards the river.   At Elmgrove I came to a corner where I could access the river bank.  Here I can look back at the bridge.

Duwamish river bank - 12th Ave So
Duwamish river bank – 12th Ave So

From this view-point if one turns around there is a mirrored art installation that was erected for Duwamish Revealed.  It was so much fun taking photos with it I did a separate post that you can find at this link – Mirror Art on Duwamish

Trucking down Elmgrove to 10th I found the Duwamish Waterway Park.  Long expanse of green grass with benches, picnic tables and a small beach area.

Duwamish Waterway Park in Southpark
Duwamish Waterway Park in Southpark

A pair of crows were scratching around and of course I took their photo.

Crow foraging at Duwamish Waterway Park
Crow foraging at Duwamish Waterway Park

There was a couple of homeless folks over in a far corner so I used my less expensive camera for a few shots. Did not want to make myself a robbery target needlessly.

My shadow and the beach at Duwamish Waterway Park
My shadow and the beach at Duwamish Waterway Park

From the park I went down 10th and turned onto Kenyon continuing my zig-zag route along the roads next to the river.  At the corner of 8th & Kenyon I found some large pieces permanently displayed next to a building that seemed unused now.  One was a huge anchor and the others were types of machinery.

Some research on this property turned up that it was Sea Bay, a Boat Manufacturing Company. It was for sale a while ago but around the corner in the yard was some activity.

Here is a picture to give you a bigger view of how things are becoming much more industrial versus residential.

West view down Chicago Avenue from 8th Ave South - Seattle/Southpark
West view down Chicago Avenue from 8th Ave South – Seattle/Southpark

As I walked down 8th I came across a yard with a dog that was paralyzed and using a doggy wheelchair.  I talked to the lady owner for quite a while about him and the neighborhood.  She then told me about the small park that had been built down the street where the corner intersected with the river. It told the story of how there was a trolley bridge over the Duwamish there.  I did a separate post on this historical site plus how across the river was the Georgetown Steam Plant pump house.   Here is the link for your viewing pleasure – Old Bridge over Duwamish info

Duwamish River from site of old bridge in Southpark
Duwamish River from site of old bridge in Southpark

This was where I also realized that I was on the Duwamish Trail.  Who knew it even existed. This was a fairly recent extension of it through Southpark.  After the corner history park on 8th I went down Portland Avenue South and turned onto 7th.  That street bends slightly to follow the river and becomes Riverside Drive.  More industry for one to see.

Right when I figured I was wandering in a no-man’s land of work there was two houses on the river bank.  And then I saw the door!

The blue door in the middle of industry
The blue door in the middle of industry

Strange but true here was a house behind fences and hedges that was a fortress against the no-man’s land wilderness.

No time to waste though, I was right next to the river and more things to see.  Riverside Dr turned into Webster Street, next I turned onto 5th South and to the left onto Fontanelle Street.

The river was certainly being abused in this corner of the city.  That recycling plant across the river had tons of metal. All this machinery on the west bank had been used for many years too. No wonder pollution is being cleaned up.  I have to hope the new owners of these properties are trying to be cleaner.

Then as I walked down Fontanelle I had another moment of surprise.  There on top of a building next to the fence was something really out-of-place…  a carousal horse.  You got it right, a horse you would put your kids on for a ride that goes around and around with a calliope playing in the background.

What is this in the middle of industrial wasteland?
What is this in the middle of industrial wasteland?

 

Go Figure - a Carousal Horse
Go Figure – a Carousal Horse

This is where I came to 2nd Avenue South and turned to the north.  I knew on my map that this was a dead-end but I wanted to see the small piece of the original river before it was straightened.  I was not disappointed but it was a bit disconcerting down this street and I had my mace in hand most of the way.  No worry though, the place was deserted and I got some good photos of this little corner of the Southpark world up against the 1st Avenue South Bridge.

2nd Ave South dead-end in Southpark
2nd Ave South dead-end in Southpark

If you look at the map with the old and new river course, you can see how the 1st Avenue South Bridge runs right between the arms of a bend in the river’s old path.  This little inlet is a piece of the one lower southern end.

After I had reached my destination of seeing the inlet I hustled out of that deadend and turned onto Holden Street right at where Hwy 599 had a stop light and the approach to the 1st Avenue South Bridge was.  I walked down under the bridge to see its underskirts. Here is a post with a 360 degree video of what that was like.  Underskirts of 1st Ave So Bridge

It was only 3pm at that time but the sun was getting lower in the sky.  I hiked it back to Holden and followed part of the new Duwamish Trail through some other streets of Southpark.  This last set of photos are some of the eclectic things of manufacturing and houses that I saw on my way back.

Then I saw my car. I did have a slight worry that it might be stolen but it was where I left it. To get out of the marina I had to go around back towards the crow tree and that was where I saw the whole flock.   Southpark Crow Murder

What a trek this all was!  My next leg in the adventure will be north of 1st Avenue South Bridge. That is a long piece of West Marginal Way that has no access to the river with shipping container storage and other big industrial lots.  We shall see what I find there.

To see more of my Duwamish Adventure I have a directory post that links all of the pieces together.  You can find that post here – My Duwamish Adventure Directory

Posted in Green River Trail, My Duwamish Adventure

1st Avenue South Bridge Underskirts

Yesterday I walked from the 14th Avenue South Bridge to under the 1st Avenue South Bridge. Walking the trails has revealed many bridge underskirts and this one did not disappoint.  For those that live in Seattle, this is also Highway 99 and is where Hwy 509 & 599 join up to cross the Duwamish River.

 

In my study of the river’s original course I learned that the river had a bend here and on both sides of the bridge are small inlets that are remnants of those bends.  I got a few photos of one of those that a container company borders.  I will post them in a separate post later, but here is a tickler to get your imagination going on what this place looked like more than 100 years ago.  (river was dredged in 1913).

Remnants of Duwamish River original course
Remnants of Duwamish River original course

Under the bridge is a maze of road, ramps, river and industry.  At the end of my hike I came to where the container company resides.  If you look carefully at the end of the video there is a small building by parked cars.  That borders the inlet above.

A car inside the chain link fence came out and the motorized gate opened for them.  They then drove off as I was taking a short 360 degree video you can see below.  Guess they worried I would try to trespass because they came back and waited for it to close.

To see more of my Duwamish Adventure I have a directory post that links all of the pieces together.  You can find that post here – My Duwamish Adventure Directory

Posted in Green River Trail, My Duwamish Adventure

Duwamish Revealed Mirror Art

Duwamish Revealed placed different art around the river and yesterday during my walk through Southpark I discovered this gem.  Here is the info on who and what it is:

Duwamish Revealed Art - Alone. Standing, in the middle of Darkness. Invisible. - by Ben Zamora
Duwamish Revealed Art – Alone. Standing, in the middle of Darkness. Invisible. – by Ben Zamora

Check out how the photo is not what you think it is.   Plus you get to see me in my walking garb with camera in action.

Enjoy the art and river views.

An illusion of the river
An illusion of the river
See the edges of reality?
See the edges of reality?
14th Ave So Bridge and Duwamish River reflection plus me.
14th Ave So Bridge and Duwamish River reflection plus me.
Mirror Art - 12th Ave So & Elmgrove - Seattle
Mirror Art – 12th Ave So & Elmgrove – Seattle
Duwamish River and Crow Stalker with camera
Duwamish River and Crow Stalker with camera

To see more of my Duwamish Adventure I have a directory post that links all of the pieces together.  You can find that post here – My Duwamish Adventure Directory

Posted in Green River Trail, My Duwamish Adventure

My Duwamish Adventure

The Duwamish River has mystery around it.   There is a conundrum of industry and nature along its banks.  Please go with me on an adventure trekking the length of her.  We will start at a place I consider her transformation from the Green River to the Duwamish.  This place has a large rock at low tide and at one time my senses tell me it was the end of large vessel navigation.

This quest is not as easy as my Green River Trail project.  The path along the river bank does not exist in a continuous groomed manner on the Duwamish.  You will hear me refer to the sign that is the end or beginning of the Green River Trail.  That is the place where following the river becomes more of an adventure.

Along the way I learned more about how the River was straightened.  With a few maps I realized that there are several remnants of the old river.  They appear to be places to park boats but in reality they are where the river bends intersected the man-made channel.  Here are two pictures I found that show this.

Here is a listing of my blog posts.  As I traverse the only river in Seattle I will add to this list, so do come back to use this as a guide.  Do be kind to the river and then she will be kind to you!   Join in her revitalization by joining any of the groups helping restore her glory.

Duwamish Adventure Begins – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 1

This is the kickoff post of my adventure.  It traverses the river from the Cecil Moses Park to the south side of Turning Basin #3.  You will see some hidden stairs, the back of the USPS center, Oxbow Boeing bridge and walking trail plus my getting stuck in the muck.

Duwamish River’s Rich and Homeless – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 2

This last couple of weeks I walked several times from the Turning Basin #3 up through Southpark to the 14th Avenue South Bridge.  I was struck by the mixture of use the river has on it.  The Green River Trail was mostly natural with a splattering of warehouses and homes.  The Duwamish is so different.  Check out the spectacular yachts right next to those less fortunate.

Duwamish River Electrified – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 3

Got your attention!  This article is not about the river being live with electricity but rather about a City Light substation wedged between the river and freeway.  Remember how I stated I had to be inventive on my quest to get to the river bank?  This article not only will show you the massive wires and transformers but also how I got to the bank.

Duwamish Industry and Houses Southpark – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 4

As I traipsed along the river I collected a collection of photos of the mixed use the river has.  This article gives you a glimpse of that variety. In some places I only could get a glimpse of the river but then others I gloried in her nearness.

Southpark Bridge across Duwamish River – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 5

The Duwamish River has had a bridge at 14th Avenue South for many years.  Recently, the old one was closed due to disrepair.  After a lot of politics the money was raised to build a new bridge. On my walk along the river, I came upon this lovely new bridge and a well designed and informative park built under and around it.

Sights in Southpark – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 6

When I walk I often find fun things that I have to share.  This chapter is more about the town of Southpark and some quirky things found while seeking out the river bank.

Duwamish Revealed Mirror Art – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 7

In Southpark at 12th Avenue South and Elmgrove one can stumble upon this mirror cube and the illusions of the river.

Duwamish – Bridge & Steam Plant History – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 8

A bridge was built over the newly straightened Duwamish in 1914 and this Duwamish Revealed Art installation commemorates that site.  It also points out the pump house for the Georgetown Steam Plant that saved it when the river’s course was re-directed.

1st Avenue South Bridge Underskirts – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 9

Check out what the bridge looks like under the roadway and next to the Duwamish river with a 360 degree video.

Duwamish meanderings in Southpark – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 10

This post will round out my investigation of Southpark’s Duwamish River Bank by showing you some of the varied sights I encountered.  This ranges from cranes, houses, warehouses, and of course the river.  Add a few surprises in there too!

West side Duwamish 8th Avenue South and steam plant pump house – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 11

Went to the small neglected park on the west side of the Duwamish end of 8th Avenue. Photos of the pump house and gritty park where the bridge over 100 years ago crossed the river.

River View Park – under 1st Avenue South Bridge – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 12

This is the north side of the bridge where a small neglected park harbors some of our neglected citizens.

Shipping Container Yards and Cement Plant on River – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 13

Follow West Marginal Way between the forested bank and industry.  One cannot follow the river bank in this section due to the security these industrial endeavors have. (rightfully so do they protect cargo)

Crows of Shipping Container Land – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 14

Everywhere I go I meet Crow Families.  This one is making its way in a shipping container maintenance and storage yard next to the Duwamish.

Kellogg Island & old Duwamish river – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 15

The southern end of Kellogg Island which was part of Edwards Island before the river was dredged.  Also a view of the West Seattle Bridge and Seattle.

Kellogg Island – North View – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 16

More views including the West bank, north tip and how industry surrounds this last wild piece of the river.

Duwamish Tribe Longhouse and the Train – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 17

Up on the Duwamish Trail path you will see the longhouse with a Chief Seattle sign.  Then along came a train so close and loud I had to take a video of it.

Duwamish Mystery Marker – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 18

Found this little marker from 1996 when the park didn’t exist or wasn’t very developed.  It is now off the beaten path since the usable areas are to the north of it.  I challenge you to find this marker too.

Going to Sea –  Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 19

Duwamish Revealed art installation at T-107 Park.

Twin Parks – T107 & Herring’s House – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 20

Long post all about my recent visit to these two parks along the Duwamish River.  Lot to see and experience.  History, birds, boats, homeless, and THE River!

BNSF Railroad Bridge over Duwamish River – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 21

To the south of the West Seattle Bridge is this 1928 railroad bridge.  The Duwamish continues to hold history for those that seek it.

T-105 Duwamish Revealed Art Installation – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 22

Two sculptures installed during the 2015 Duwamish Revealed at the T-105 Park owned by the Port of Seattle.

Port of Seattle T-105 Park – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 23

1995 was the year the Port decided to develop this small park so the public could have access to the Duwamish River.

Video of train working along the Duwamish  – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 24

Took this little train video outside the gate of T-105.  Look for the Engineer waving back at me.

Riverside and West Seattle Bridge – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 25

Follow my meandering around this old community next to the West Seattle Bridge.

Trouble at Terminal 5 – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 26

Talk about trouble – my day around security at Terminal 5 how I had to delete a photo.

Under the West Seattle Freeway – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 27

A maze of concrete bridges and some history too.

Northern Duwamish Waterway – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 28

A look at the very north end of the Duwamish River before it flows into Elliott Bay.  A tug video shows how narrow it is.

Alki Trail Sights – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 29

Some good and some sad things around the intersection of Harbor Avenue and Spokane Street.

Port of Seattle T-5 from Park – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 30

Get some good views of the big area Terminal 5. See a few ships docked there and understand the security in place there.

Harbor Avenue Crows – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 31

The murder here at the north end of the Port of Seattle’s T-5 recognized me and we had a little play time together.

Jack Block Park – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 32

Wander around the park and see how it is a combination of green park, beach, view tower and old remnants of industry of old.

Going Rogue seeking the Duwamish – Duwamish Adventure – Chapter 33

Here I go off trail to attempt to get to the river mouth. Who will win? Me? or the Port of Seattle?

Our only River – The Duwamish – Duwamish Adventure – Final Chapter

This is the finale of My Duwamish Adventure. Enjoy a short video of the river’s mouth and how I encourage everyone to get out and walk without your technology. Enjoy the serendipity of life!

Hope you enjoy my adventure.

Check out the Green River Trail Quest series of posts.  You will find it a combination of history, nature and man-made finds that follows this trail from beginning in Seattle to south Kent.

Green River Trail Quest Directory

 

Posted in Green River Trail, My Duwamish Adventure

Duwamish River’s Rich and Homeless

My Duwamish Adventure has continued in the last couple of weeks.  I am now to the north of the Green River end/beginning point.  This has not been near as easy as walking the Green River Trail.  I have had to investigate areas that are not developed, walk around industry and be rather adventurous to get to the river bank. My last two trips have yielded a lot of material so I am going to divide it up by topics rather than a plain old time line.  This will give you a good feel for all the diversity of terrain I have found while still working our way north.

This article is about how I found there are two sides to the track (or river).  My Duwamish Adventure Begins posting touched on this with a picture of the spectacular ship being built at Delta Marine.  I now know its name is “Albatross”.  While getting closer to the shipyard I captured a wide range of eclectic yachts, barges and boats on the water.

Yacht being built
Yacht being built
Albatross is her name
Albatross is her name

First lets look at Delta Marine and some high-end ships only the rich could afford. On Delta’s website they state they began as a builder of fishing boats but now concentrate on private yachts.  The fishing industry is not as lucrative so they morphed into a new product to survive.

Ship builder behind river's brush
Ship builder behind river’s brush

Look close at the feature image at the top.  You will see on the left the yacht Albatross and on the right a fishing boat pulling in their nets.  In the middle is a barge with a crane, some manufacturing buildings that I assume are Boeing related and an old water tower.

Fishing on the Duwamish with a 747 and barges.
Fishing on the Duwamish by a 747 and barges.
Old Water Tower - could this be from Kenworth Factory?
Old Water Tower – could this be from Kenworth Factory?
Barges in the turning inlet behind fishermen.
Barges in the turning inlet behind fishermen.

Let us continue to the other side of the tracks (river).  Just to the north of the Green River trail head is a small park that holds junk from a homeless encampment and/or a little party time.  While ducking into the river brush I also saw a pair of Stellar Jays dancing around in the branches. I swear I saw a white belly of a Western Scrub Jay but only captured this guy.

Green River Trail ended or began here
Green River Trail ended or began here

As I walked along the perimeter road in a small trail behind the guard rail, I came upon a place where two RVs had parked.  Last time I was here they were still there and I ended my day’s hike to the south of them.  They have been evicted by the police now.  I know this because a friend of mine told me she saw it happening on the way to work one day.  They left a bit of trash behind.

The Duwamish has long been a place for all.  Years ago the Duwamish tribe made it their home and harvested the bounty of the natural river.  Then modern man came to town and built his industry alongside mother nature.  Some of us have been rewarded well in this world and some are falling behind.  The river showed us this today.

To see more of my Duwamish Adventure I have a directory post that links all of the pieces together.  You can find that post here – My Duwamish Adventure Directory

Posted in Green River Trail, My Duwamish Adventure

Duwamish River Electrified

Got your attention!  This article is not about the river being live with electricity but rather about a City Light substation wedged between the river and freeway.  Remember how I stated I had to be inventive on my quest to get to the river bank?  This article not only will show you the massive wires and transformers but also how I got to the bank.

Looking towards the river I saw this bird sitting on a piling through the legs of a tall steel power tower.  Feather Moment is a blog I wrote about this bird and a Heron with a stray feather.

Bird on piling thru Steel Power Tower
Bird on piling thru Steel Power Tower

Getting around the Substation to see the Duwamish River bank was a bit of a challenge. I found others had blazed the way and there was a trail.  Check out how high up the water was in the river.  The tide was coming in and it had rained a lot the days prior to my visit down here.

Trail on the Duwamish River bank behind substation
Trail on the Duwamish River bank behind substation
No trail here - just road
No trail here – just road

It was all worth it – check out the view it yielded.

Turning Basin #3 on Duwamish River
Turning Basin #3 on Duwamish River

To see more of my Duwamish Adventure I have a directory post that links all of the pieces together.  You can find that post here – My Duwamish Adventure Directory