Thursday, March 20, 2008

Baker Beach, San Francisco

From a posting in a nudist forum:

California has many nude beaches. One of the most popular is San Francisco's Baker Beach with its fantastic view of the Golden Gate Bridge nearby. SOUTHBOUND from the Golden Gate Bridge, take the 25th Ave. exit. Turn right onto Lincoln Blvd. Then take a right at Bowley St. NORTHBOUND, take I-280's 19th St. Exit, then north on 19th, turning left onto 25th Ave. Turn right onto Lincoln, and then left onto Bowley St. The nude beach is at the very east end of Baker Beach near the south end of the Golden Gate Bridge.

ORCOBA I-84 Rooster Rock Adopt-A-Highway Clean-up

We’ve set a tentative date for our next I-84 Rooster Rock Adopt-A-Highway Clean-up:

Saturday, April 5 – 8:00am - Noon-ish

ORCOBA’s section is the two-mile stretch of Interstate 84 between the Corbett exit, eastward to the Rooster Rock exit, approximately a half-hour east of downtown Portland.

Litter bags, drinking water and safety vests will be provided; participants are encouraged to bring along their own work gloves, sturdy footwear and clothing appropriate for the day’s weather.

Participants are invited to congregate beforehand at Shari’s Restaurant, off of the Troutdale exit (#17), around 7:00am. From there we will drive east to the Corbett exit a few miles east, park on the side road, assemble and set out for the cleanup. Depending on the number of participants, we may elect to divide into two or more teams.

First-time participants to highway cleanups are required to complete a short safety orientation and sign the necessary paperwork, prior to performing the cleanup. Please contact us at if you are interested in participating but need the orientation, and we can make the safety video available for viewing. Prior highway cleanup participants, as well as those who have not yet participated but have already viewed the safety video, do not need the orientation.

Updates will be posted throughout the coming days. In the meantime, please contact us at if you are interested and are planning on participating, and if you need to receive the orientation, so we can get an idea as to the number of potential participants.

More to follow soon…thank you!


Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Olympic Hot Springs May Be Razed to the Ground

The Final General Management Plan for Olympic National Park has been sent to those requesting a copy. Within that document are the recommendations for Olympic Hot Springs which under the draft plan, the desired outcome was to remove the user-built pools and revert the area to a 'natural' state. Hundreds of us wrote in to voice our thoughts on removing the soaking-opportunities from Olympic.

Olympic HS is one of the few remaining places we can enjoy a natural soaking experience in the State of Washington. It is (and was) also nude-friendly . . . something dear to our hearts since who wants to soak in a hot spring wearing a bathing suit.

My initial posting on Olympic Hot Springs and the Draft General Management Plan is here for background info. The Final General Management Plan is located here (large pdf downloads). Time to get out our pen and pencils (or keyboards) and complain about citizen input being dismissed.

Olympic National Park
Sue McGill, Superintendent
Olympic National Park
600 E. Park Avenue
Port Angeles, WA 98362

I received my copy of the Olympic National Park Final General Management Plan/Environmental Impact Statement (Final GMP/EIS) in the mail today.

My interest was mainly focussed around the status envisioned for the natural hot springs, name Olympic Hot Springs. I was disappointed the final plan did not incorporate many of the salvaging ideas of the numerous commenters who took their valuable time to suggest ways to save this popular recreational resource.

I particularly take exception to the response of one published comment on the number of remaining natural hot spring resources remaining in the State of Washington . . . the response being that "Olympic Hot Springs is one of five functioning and accessible undeveloped hot springs in Washington. Four of these are on public land." That statement is COMPLETELY INACCURATE and tends to dillute the concerns of the original commenter and all others who made similar comments regarding the few undeveloped hot spring resources remaining in the State of Washington. You are in essence saying that we still have other options. That is not the case.

The hot springs resources potentially available are:

Olympic HS - Public (National Park), undeveloped, GMP/EIS envisions reverting,

Baker HS - Public (National Forest), undeveloped, problematical after Dec 2007 storms and landslide wiped out source and pool,

Wind River HS - Public (National Scenic Area), undeveloped, inaccessible because user must cross private property and No Trespassing is being enforced,

Gamma Hot Springs - Public (National Forest), undeveloped, no reasonable access (5 day backcountry hike),

Goldmyer HS - Private Fee, undeveloped, at present inaccessible due to snow and landslides above pools,

Scenic HS - Private, undeveloped and posted. Scenic is closed to the public.

The few other hot springs are either located in protected watersheds or have long been closed to the public (Ohanapenosh in Rainier NP, for example).

At present, only Olympic HS provides free or low cost public access for soaking. The others are marginalized due to a lack of access that leaves the general public without use. In a state surrounded by other states and provinces with a plethora of hot spring resources, Washington State will become barren. A sad state of affairs and one that does not seem to take into account the sentiment of the numerous commenters who made good arguments for retention of a resource and experience our neighboring states and provinces allow their residents.

As I (and many others) suggested during the draft phase, let's look into the possibility providing management and a modest fee to mitigate most if not all of the initially-stated reasons why reversion of Olympic Hot Springs was put into the GMP/EIS Plan in the first place. I see nothing in the final plan addressing those suggestions . . . suggestions that balance the need to protect the resource as well as keeping a traditional soaking resource. To me, as a citizen, I feel I have wasted my time with comments being dismissed out of hand.

Friday, March 14, 2008

McCredie Hot Springs is still soakable

Shirley G. reports:

. . . the landslide above McCredie Hot Springs is being repaired and while the river is muddy from the slide the springs are in great shape. To reach the pools across the river you are required to park below the bridge and the walk in a little longer but well worth it.

The slide Shirley is referring to is the Frasier slide of January 19th, 2008 that completely severed main train traffic through the Central Cascades of Oregon:

A month ago, a chunk of Coyote Mountain 20 acres wide and 200 feet deep sloughed off just above where the Union Pacific line winds up a timbered grade. A mix of mud, rock, fir trees and snow -- now referred to as the Frazier slide -- carried away a quarter-mile of track on the upper hillside and another 150 feet of track below. The slide ended up covering more than 40 acres. Source

The slide occurred to the south McCredie Hot Springs and Hwy 58 on the picturesque switchbacks of the slopes to the south (as this UP image and graphic shows) . . .

Crews continue to clear the debris from a mudslide that took out Union Pacific main line track south of Eugene, OR, on January 19. Heavy snowfall has made work conditions difficult as crews work to remove an estimated 153,000 truckloads of downed trees, mud and snow from this remote location in order to restore the track. At this point, track repairs are estimated to take at least another 4-6 weeks. Source

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