Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Delta Ponds Walk

I had to take my car to the dealer this morning for some warranty/recall work, ie, installing new airbags. Since this is located in my old (and future) stomping grounds, I opted to take a long walk while the work was being done.

One of the things I love about Eugene: even this car dealership is a LEED-certified building! For those of you who don't know, LEED certification has to do with environmental friendliness. I can't remember what level this building is, but my memory says it's a 4 (almost the highest). Lots of LEED buildings in this town!

Next, I opted to walk over the new pedestrian/bike bridge that opens up lots of new territory for bike riding in this area, leading east to a busy shopping corridor. I'm looking forward to using this once I'm back living in this neighborhood.

This is the view from the top -- part of what's called Delta Ponds, which is a huge pond/marsh area that has development sandwiched between the wetlands, and the rest gets left to wildlife. This is only a tiny portion -- in the distance to the left you can barely see a footbridge that crosses into the marsh, and beyond that it opens up into a very large swath of water. And there's more on the other side of the road, near the river, to the left. As I recall, this wetland area was reclaimed from an industrial site -- maybe a sand and gravel operation? Don't quote me!

A bit further down the street we reach this: my future new home. This is the building I'm on the waiting list for, and it's home to me already, even though I can't live there quite yet. I peeked into the back area and saw that some residents have big, healthy-looking veggie plants and flowers in the personal growing beds. I can't wait to get one of those, too.

Not much further down the street is the river access lane which brings us out here, just north of one of several bike/pedestrian bridges crossing the Willamette all the way through town. There is an identical paved path lining the river through town on the other bank, too. As I recall, it's about an 18-mile loop, from top and bottom bridges.

One of several benches located overlooking the river, all an easy walk from 'home'. Great for reading, relaxing, or if one is inclined to be out late enough, watching sunsets.

When I lived out here before (I must have moved downtown from this area around 2006) I walked/rode this path often and always looked upon these few homes with some amount of envy. They all have lovely yards, lots of roses right now and plenty of other flowers, plus private patios and some kind of sunroom with greenhouse-type glass. They are so charming on the outside, and of course, they overlook the river.

I've looked upon this place with envy, too. It's also a retirement home, but unlike mine this one is fancy and pricey. Not something I could ever afford, but then I suspect that if I could afford this, I'd head to some tropical isle to spend that money, not do it here!

Back to the Delta Ponds, on the opposite side of the road from the first photo, between the road and the bike path. Lots of geese out there, but really not visible here.

But, this guy was hiding on the edges, just below the walkway. I don't think I've ever passed by this stretch of the path without seeing at least one Great Blue Heron, and I'm surprised I didn't see more today, what with it being nesting season with lots of hungry beaks to be fed.

More ponds -- this time on the right side of the path, between the path and the river.

Caught this little family just below, in the same pond as above. I think they were in the foreground of that photo, but I had to use the zoom to get this close. Cute!

Love the Norman MacLean quote here. I don't know how many acres of wetland are included in these ponds -- I'm sure a Google search would answer the question, but I don't remember.

The next bridge over the Willamette. Signs tell me that this one is two miles from the first one I encountered, which means that by the time I got back to my car, I probably walked about 5 miles and it took me an hour and 40 minutes -- with plenty of stops to enjoy the view and take photos.  I'd had a phone call telling me the car was ready not too long before I reached this point, and while I'd planned to walk a little further, my body was feeling the effort so I walked on to the dealer, which wasn't too far away. Basically, I walked a loop -- part on the street, part on the river.

It was a lovely walk. First time I've done it since I moved downtown in 2006, although I'm sure I must have cycled the entire loop along the river at least once after that. Mostly, this northern section is too crowded on weekends for me, so I opted for other paths while I lived downtown. Indeed, now I'm more ready than ever to reach the top of that wait list and move into this neighborhood once more.

No comments:

Post a Comment