Yakima Valley Creek. Oil on Canvas. 12 x 24.
Our place names around here are so odd. This creek is near a town called Zillah. Yes, I know it sounds like a name I came up with playing Boggle. Zillah. Those of you steeped in Washington state lore will know Zillah as the home of the Tea Pot Gas Station (on the National Historic Register!) Others will think I made up the name. So I've decided to skip Zillah and call this Yakima Valley Creek, since it's that too.
For years I worked in environmental conservation and one of the most interesting things I learned was the impact trapping had on the landscape of eastern Washington. Today when I travel there it's mostly a dry area but before the trappers came 150+ years ago there were far more beavers and the wetlands they created. Great habitat for many species. Those have been gone a long, long time and we're a little poorer for that. There would have been more streams like the one above. And of course, more salmon.