I am leading with this photo because I just read a post over at Lost in the Landscape where James has a few things to say about dead trees as ART. I happen to think (and I think James would agree) that Mom Nature has done a pretty good job of turning this dead tree into ART all on her own. We spent the weekend at Sunriver, a resort near Bend, OR. It is a kind of wilderness version of Disneyland, where families can access entertainment for all ages, and an event like the wedding that brought us here can achieve the iconic status that will burn itself into the memories of all who attended.
Just get a load of this room, where the reception took place. The “Great Hall” was a part of the fort that was later renovated as one of the key buildings giving the resort its character. It would be hard to top this as a setting for a wedding reception.
But we had lots of free time, during which we chose to explore the outer limits of the resort. The stable offers many levels of equestrian adventures. In that field behind the horses we spied many ground squirrels. Overhead, the red tailed hawks were perusing the menu. I did not happen to see one zeroing in on his dinner, but R claims that he saw one of the hawks soaring overhead with something dangling from its beak. It’s one thing to watch these things on “Nature” and quite something else to experience them first hand.
This old horse looked like it would be about my speed, if we had not been committed to proceeding on foot.
We did, at least, stick to the horse trails, which took us off the paved paths for bicyclists and into areas where wildflowers like Indian paintbrush flourished.
Backing up a little bit, we can see the grasses and shrubs where the paintbrushes have chosen to proliferate.
The pine forests have none of the underbrush typical of the other side of the mountains.
We might not catch sight of all of the creatures living here, but there is no mistaking the signs of beavers working the woods.
The meadows are composed of many different grasses. It is hard to capture the undulating beauty of these seas of nodding seedheads, shimmering in the breeze.
Some of the wildflowers and grasses are familiar, but others are peculiar to this region.
Where landscaping has taken place, there is a heavy reliance upon grasses, day lilies and willows. I think they must water these bioswales with some regularity to keep them looking this lush.
The wedding took place on the lawn, cocktails on the terrace, and then we retired to this magnificent room for dinner and dancing. The site was originally a fort, so when, in the sixties, it was reconfigured into a resort, the log structures became the main lodge and the great hall. I’m repeating myself here, but the first photo showed the chandeliers, while this one features the spiral staircase built around a huge tree trunk. What a romantic setting for two young people to join hands and set off into their future.