Heart of the Valley

The weather was warm and sunny, perfect for a road trip, so I headed over to the Corvallis area for a little exploring. My first stop was the Jackson-Frazier Wetland. As I strolled the boardwalk I encountered a stalk of gorgeous, vibrant purple flowers. I wasn’t familiar with this plant so I was relieved when the handy interpretive sign provided me the name: Camas (Camassia quamash).

I knew Camas was important as an edible bulb (one that helped save the Lewis and Clark expedition from starvation in 1805) but I had no idea it was that beautiful, too! A preening Woodhouse’s Scrub-Jay and a Common Yellowthroat kept me company at the wetland.

My next stop was the William L. Finley National Wildlife Refuge. In all my travels this is my favorite NWR – it is very accessible with lots of trails that meander through a wide variety of habitats. Massive Oregon White Oak (Quercus garryana), Fuller’s Teasel (Dipsacus fullonum), Wild Oregon Iris (‎Iris tenax), and Elegant Star Tulip (Calochortus elegans) were standouts!

While it wasn’t the birdiest time of day I still enjoyed my afternoon. A brief bobcat sighting was exciting. I will definitely be back for another visit soon!

Categories: Nature Notes


  1. Sounds like a really nice day, glad to hear “warm” and “sunny”.


  2. More gorgeous pictures, looking forward to someday joining you in your wandering!!!

    Liked by 1 person

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