Well and Good

WC Is Off the Grid


WC will be off the intertubes for a few days. Posts will resume when WC is back or when the temperatures in Boise drop a little bit, whichever occurs first. Advertisements

Mile Market 73 Fire from Brownlee Road, Central Idaho

Is This the New Normal?


There are at least five active wildfires in Valley County, Idaho alone. One of those fires, the Mile Marker 73 Fire, sent WC and Mrs. WC on a gnarly detour along a ridge above the North Fork of the Payette River and Highway 55, our intended route. The detour was along a logging road with…

Bobolink Fledgling, New Meadows, Idaho

The Kids Are All Right


WC isn’t talking about the movie or the song. WC is talking about the newly fledged birds. The next generation. The reason for migration, for courtship, for bird song. Richard Dawkins would call them the reason for birds. Either way, they are out of the nest. Newly fledged birds, for a birder, are delightful and…

A geological map of Valley County, Idaho

Geology and Payette Lake


Geologists tend to have a strange time sense. Mostly, they live in the present, year-to-year, decade to decade, like the rest of us. But their profession also requires them to live in geologic time, in epochs spanning millions of years. A geologist would look at Payette Lake in both ways: a beautiful, blue and blessedly…

Sessions' Swiss Cheese Memory

A Sad Day for Lawyers


At a speech on Tuesday, Attorney General Jeff Sessions, the chief law enforcement officer for the United States, giggled and joined in when his audience chanted “Lock her up.” Never mind that a room full of college students was metaphorically lynching someone. Never mind that Hillary Clinton has been absolved of any crimes by the…

Smolt to Adult Fish Ratios at Dams Along the Columbia and Snake Rivers

Science, Salmon and the Snake


The Snake is the Snake River, once one of the world’s preeminent salmon streams, famed for its chinook,sockeye and steelhead runs. Now those fish are an endangered species and at the heart of a complex struggle involving fish, water rights, hydroelectricity and, most of all, dam-foolishness. One way to measure the health of an anadromous…