A Drop of Water...

A Drop of Water...

There's a drop of water on the wall
And the drop's about to fall
And it falls into a trickle
And the trickle's flowing down
Down, down, to the ground
And the moss begins to grow
Watch, watch, watch watch the water flow
And watch the current become a stream

Lyrics from “Drop of Water”

By Dana Lyons

Join King County Parks 
on Saturday December 8th 
9am to 1pm. 

Enter at the end of SE 248th (the MV LIbrary road) 

"King County Parks recently acquired a home site in the middle of Cedar Creek Park. Now we need your help to turn the former home site back into high quality habitat. Come plant native trees and shrubs before invasive weeds move in!"

If you're interested in participating it is important that you email
Brian Lund at King County Parks brian.lund@kingcounty.gov


 The Green River in the Green River Gorge

The Green River in the Green River Gorge

How Rivers Form

Most rivers begin life as drops of water creating a tiny stream running down a mountain slope or as an underground spring of water that collects below the surface of the earth and then emerges where the slope of the land meets the air.  They are fed by melting snow and ice, or by rainwater running off the land. The water follows the easiest course through channels, cracks, and folds in the land as it flows downhill. Small streams meet and join together, growing larger and larger until the flow can be called a river.

 The Green-Duwamish is the same river that flows between Enumclaw and Black Diamond.

The Green-Duwamish is the same river that flows between Enumclaw and Black Diamond.

The Green river has some major tributaries that contribute water into the larger river.  One of these creeks or streams is Jenkins Creek.  Jenkins Creek flows through Covington and Maple Valley from Lake Wilderness and Lake Lucerne. Another branch comes from the north near Shadow Lake. It is part of a system of tributaries that provide water to the Green River.  What happens in these tributaries affects the entire river system and eventually Puget Sound.

Taking care of our tributaries is critical to improving and maintaining cold clean water, salmon habitat, and consistent water quantity in the main Green river.  Many of our urban and suburban streams no longer support health fish populations. Jenkins creek has become one of those streams. Yet, looking at other areas as a model we can work to reverse decades of mismanagement and restore these vital tributaries that flow into the Green-Duwamish river.

In 2005 a landowner, Mo Munch, sold five acres on both sides of the Jenkins Creek to remain as open space and habitat in perpetuity. He talked about when Jenkins creek used to host a large salmon run. He told a story of when the bears used to catch salmon in the creek and feast on them along the shoreline of his property. Another land owner, the Burgesses, adjacent to him also sold their property which consisted of two houses and thirty acres with a beautiful forested pond and two branches of Jenkins creek running through the property.

 Cedar Creek Park from the Air. A forest oasis surrounded by a growing suburban landscape.

Cedar Creek Park from the Air. A forest oasis surrounded by a growing suburban landscape.

Today their property, along with an additional 94 acres, is owned by King County Parks and is now called Cedar Creek Park.  Thirteen years have passed since the initial sale of the properties and it now time for the community to get involved in restoring the properties and connecting them to the upper section of Cedar Creek Park.  Make history on December 8th by participating in a groundbreaking restoration event.  This will be a great opportunity to visit the lower property, participate in creating the park, and learning more about a future vision for the area.

Just like drops of water form a river each of us can be part of a larger groundswell by volunteering to restore, protect, and enhance the wild spaces and waterways in our own communities.

 Tahoma High School Students Volunteering at Cedar Creek Park

Tahoma High School Students Volunteering at Cedar Creek Park

Hungry Beaver

Hungry Beaver

Hungry beaver along the Green River…

Summer Swimming Hole

Summer Swimming Hole

Where the trail meets the river a giant rock spirals out of the deep green water like a whale.  White foam speckles the surface of the deep green color of the water.  At low water in July and August a rocky beach frames a deep green pool beneath the Whale rock.  A large flat rock sits in the middle of the pool.  Great for soaking up the sun on a hot day. 

Paradise Rediscovered

Paradise Rediscovered

The road winds down a long hill.  As it turns it passes a couple of houses, a spring spilling out of the hillside and what looks like an overgrown R.V. park.  The blinking light is a stop sign to either stop or go for cars on either side of a one lane bridge.  Only one car from either direction can cross the bridge at a time.  The Green River Gorge Road (or Lawson Road as it is known in Black Diamond) crosses over one of the most beautiful sections of the Green River Gorge…and one of the more accessible areas outside of Washington State Parks.

Franklin Townsite Hike and Beyond

Franklin Townsite Hike and Beyond

The trail starts at the northern side of the Green River Gorge Resort.  For $5 you can park in a field on the western side of the road.  From the trailhead you pass through a gate from private land to the undeveloped Washington State Parks land…

Volunteer on May 5th at the Green River Cleanup

Volunteer on May 5th at the Green River Cleanup

Join the 33rd Annual Green River Cleanup on May 5th, 2018.  You can still join us as an experienced whitewater boater or you can go with a Whitewater Company or as part of the ground crews.  Don't miss out on one of the most beautiful and fun river trips in Western Washington!

From the Air Above...

From the Air Above...

What does the Green River Gorge look like from above?  That is the question I asked myself when I enlisted my friend, a pilot, to fly me over the Gorge in April of 2017…

North Flaming Geyser State Park

North Flaming Geyser State Park

Flaming Geyser is a 503 acre day use park that is the downstream book end to the Green River Gorge.  Flaming Geyser is where the Green River Gorge ends and the Green River Valley begins.  The steep cliff walls of the gorge give way to open fields and farm land.

Across the river from the main part of Flaming Geyser State Park is an undeveloped section of the park that is at least as large as the main park...

Join the 33rd Annual Green River Cleanup

Join the 33rd Annual Green River Cleanup

Join the 33rd Annual Green River Cleanup on May 5th, 2018.  You can still join us as an experienced whitewater boater or you can go with a Whitewater Company or as part of the ground crews.  Don't miss out on one of the most beautiful and fun river trips in Western Washington!

Hanging Gardens

Hanging Gardens

Why is it called Hanging Gardens?

"Hanging Gardens is was so aptly named by Wolf Bauer because of the native vegetation perched along the edges of eroding sandstone.  Small Cedars along with other smaller native plants cling to their narrow purchase".— Lisa Parsons, local river conservationist

Winter in the Green River Gorge

Winter in the Green River Gorge

Snow has a magical way of transforming the stark bareness of a winter landscape.  A white blanket of snow covering the ground hides the decaying leaves and limp brown grass.  The bare branches of trees dramatically contrast against the white.  Red berries hidden in dark shadows of winter bushes pop as the shadows are now brightened by snow.  The forest canopy is renewed below dark snow laden clouds.  Quiet lingers between crunching sweeps of footsteps through the snow...

Icy Creek Spring Hike

Icy Creek Spring Hike

Outdoor Project adds Icy Creek Spring in the Green River Gorge hike to their website

Thankful for the Small Things

Thankful for the Small Things

Today, with gratitude, I'd like to share some of the small things I've discovered in the Green River Gorge that affirm that life continues in the rhythm of seasons, cycles of life, and that everything has it's place and time.

Welcome to November

Welcome to November

However, I know from braving the harsher elements that there is another Green River Gorge waiting in the wild winter months...

Returning the Favor in Black Diamond

Returning the Favor in Black Diamond

Normally in my blog I highlight the Green River Gorge's natural environment.  However, I ran across this segment called “Returning the Favor” hosted by Mike Rowe of Dirty Jobs.  His segment is about remarkable people in communities all across America that go above and beyond to make the world a better place.  In Black Diamond that person is Mama Ginger who started the Soup Ladies, a nonprofit that brings food (soup) to first responders working on disasters and prolonged events...

Vote for Art & Nature

Vote for Art & Nature

One of my earliest memories as a young girl was backpacking up to a mountain meadow below the snow covered summit of Mt. Adams in southwestern Washington...