Is Nature the Key to Rehabilitating Prisoners?

5 12 2016


Once released, the formerly incarcerated face a daunting set of challenges­—a job, a place to live, and, most urgently, breaking the cycle of bad friends and bad habits that can lead to more prison time. Now scientists and activists are asking whether nature may be essential to helping them build new lives.

The linked article from Outside Magazine features our long time instructor Jen Jackson who also runs the mentorship program at Sponsors, an organization in Eugene that helps the formerly incarcerated relearn life beyond prison.

As a lover of the outdoors and the happiness it can bring to one’s life; I can only guess it could do wonders for others that are lost in the negatives that have gotten them in the correctional system.  The article highlights some successes and challenges in creating such a program; currently the only one in the nation.

Add to FacebookAdd to DiggAdd to Del.icio.usAdd to StumbleuponAdd to RedditAdd to BlinklistAdd to TwitterAdd to TechnoratiAdd to Yahoo BuzzAdd to Newsvine

The Edge of Impossible

1 12 2016

First Quadriplegic To Ever Heliski – The Edge of Impossible from HighFivesFoundation on Vimeo.

In the spring of 2014, the High Fives Foundation gave a Winter Empowerment grant to provide the team with the tools and travel necessary for Tony Schmiesing to accomplish “The Edge of Impossible” trip to Points North Heli-Adventures in Cordova, Alaska!

This uplifting and truly inspirational video was produced to showcase the human spirit and allow Tony to accomplish the life-long goal of experiencing the weightlessness of pure Alaskan powder skiing.

Get ready for your own winter skiing adventures and pray for snow.  In the words of Tony,”If you don’t try it, you’ll never know if you can can do it or not.”

Add to FacebookAdd to DiggAdd to Del.icio.usAdd to StumbleuponAdd to RedditAdd to BlinklistAdd to TwitterAdd to TechnoratiAdd to Yahoo BuzzAdd to Newsvine

Dutch Oven Turkey

22 11 2016


I love doing a turkey in the Dutch oven. So many people end up with dry, tasteless bird when they cook a turkey. That does not happen with this recipe. When I do a turkey, it is all about taste, not looks. In fact, I carve the bird and serve it on platters, so no one even sees the finished product in the oven.

One tip is to cook your bird upside down so the breast is cooked in juices the entire time. That’s what I’ve done here. If you don’t have a Dutch oven big enough (I use a 17” extra deep Maca oven that will hold a 30 lb. bird), you can do this in a roaster oven and use a cooking back to keep the moisture in. If you do use the Dutch oven, the moisture is kept in without using a cooking bag.

Here is a list of the things you will need:

  • Turkey – I like a 22 lb fresh Tom
  • 1 cube of butter
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 cups of chicken broth
  • 3 sprigs of fresh sage
  • 3 sprigs of fresh rosemary
  • 3 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 2 onions, quartered
  • 4 heads of garlic (around 20-25 peeled cloves)
  • 2 cups of water
  • Large food syringe injector



Clean out the turkey and remove the neck, gizzard, etc. that come with the bird. Stuff the main cavity of the turkey with the onions and garlic cloves.


Using ½ the stick of butter, cover the outside of the turkey. Salt and pepper the outside as well.


Take the remaining half stick of butter and add it to the chicken stock in a pan and melt the butter into the stock. Fill the large syringe (I use an epidural syringe I got from a nurse that works in labor and delivery, when that gave up the ghost, I bought a food injector syringe) with the chicken broth/butter fluid and inject the broth into all meaty parts of the bird. The skin will plump up everywhere you inject the turkey.


Add the water to the bottom of the pan, place the turkey in upside down (breast down) and cover with the fresh herbs. Don’t worry is some of the herbs fall into the water at the bottom of the pan, we use the flavored juices at the end.


Cover the oven with the lid and cook at around 350° for 3 hours using even heat (slightly more coals on top than bottom). I tend to make the oven a little hotter in the first hour of cooking and go with a lower heat for the remainder of the time. Because my oven is so deep, it takes around 25% more coals than the usual formula to get the heat I want.


The key is to use a meat thermometer to check your meat temperature. When the breast meat is at 170°, your turkey is done! Make sure you do not overcook it. When the bird is done pull it out of the oven (probably in pieces as the meat falls off the bone!) carve the meat and place it on serving platters that have a bit of an edge to them. Now, using a ladle, pour some of the juices from the pan over all the meat before serving. This will be one juicy turkey!

Checkout more dutch oven recipes and creations at DutchOvenTopia

Author: dotadmin


Add to FacebookAdd to DiggAdd to Del.icio.usAdd to StumbleuponAdd to RedditAdd to BlinklistAdd to TwitterAdd to TechnoratiAdd to Yahoo BuzzAdd to Newsvine

Dutch Oven Pumpkin Pie

22 11 2016

Some content on this page was disabled on November 28, 2016 as a result of a DMCA takedown notice from Bill Osuch. You can learn more about the DMCA here:

Paddlers Take To The Willamette River

18 11 2016

Aug 15, 2016

About 130 canoeists and kayakers embarked on 5-day trip down the Willamette River this Monday morning. The 16th annual Paddle Oregon started at Marshall Island in Eugene. It’s an 85 mile journey to the outskirts of Portland.


Credit: Paddle Oregon


Willamette Riverkeeper Travis Williams says the trip offers a chance to get to know the river better.
Williams: “There’s so many wonderful natural areas. There’s a ton of wildlife. Really nice canoeing and kayaking opportunities throughout the whole extent of the river and so we’re showing people that quite literally. And this year, of course, we’re celebrating the 50th anniversary of Bob Straub’s proposal for a Willamette River Greenway system.”

Bob Straub pitched the greenway between Eugene and Portland when he was running in 1966 for Oregon governor as a Democrat. He lost to Republican Tom McCall, who helped create a modified greenway system. Straub was elected governor in 1974.

Full article can be found at:

Add to FacebookAdd to DiggAdd to Del.icio.usAdd to StumbleuponAdd to RedditAdd to BlinklistAdd to TwitterAdd to TechnoratiAdd to Yahoo BuzzAdd to Newsvine

Trans-Cascadia: Enduro Bike Race in our Backyards.

7 11 2016


Year 2 of the enduro formatted backcountry race on our local trails.  For non-mountain bikers you’ve probably never heard of this race, but it’s quickly becoming a premier experience for top pro and amateur bike racers.  Taking place in areas around Oakridge and McKenzie Bridge, the Trans Cascadia is four days of hard racing, camping, and fun- bringing the bike industry to the trails just miles down the road.

Trans Cascadia Race recap.

Although an expensive race; the event highlights our local trail network and excites riders to get out and explore.

Interested in racing next year?  September 27 – October 1, 2017.  Registration is up now.   registration

Next summer we will be expanding our Mountain Bike Camps at the River House Outdoor Center and will have young rippers on some of these same trails with the goal of helping to create passionate, forest loving and respectful riders.

Trails like we have in the Pacific Northwest are a blessing!  Please do your part and help maintain what you enjoy.  Local clubs are a great way to find trail work parties.

Eugene/Springfield area- Desciples Of Dirt

Oarkridge area- Greater Oakridge Area Trail Stewards

Corvallis area- Team Dirt

Add to FacebookAdd to DiggAdd to Del.icio.usAdd to StumbleuponAdd to RedditAdd to BlinklistAdd to TwitterAdd to TechnoratiAdd to Yahoo BuzzAdd to Newsvine

River run, wisely

27 10 2016

Be prepared, be realistic when rafting, paddling waterways, local guide advises

June 18, 2016

There are plenty of reasons why thousands of people are lured to water every summer.

It could be the sound of water flowing over rocks, the cool breeze that comes off the surface, the refreshing feel on a hot day or the wildlife such an outing attracts.

Whatever the reason, city of Eugene recreation programmer Aimee Goglia and her team of rafting guides know to expect it every year. That’s why they offer so many rafting opportunities — through city summer camps, school field trips and groups such as Nearby Nature and McKenzie River Trust.

Run out of the River House Outdoor Program on N. Adams Street in Eugene, the rafting program also coordinates trips with all the community centers. The River House program does not compete with private outfitters — groups wanting a tour guide and a raft trip are encouraged to call private rafting outfitters.

The rafting season can start as early as April and run through September. At the height of summer, Goglia and her staff of 20 guides are coordinating about five trips a week.

This summer, a rafting camp through the Wayne Morse Family Farm runs July 11 through July 15. Youths ages 6 to 8 will float the Willamette and older kids will float the McKenzie. Another camp based at the Sheldon Community Center will take kids ages 6 to 11 on the Mc-Kenzie River the week of August 1.

Program staff floats the Willamette and Mc-Kenzie rivers often enough to really know the rivers, appreciate their beauty and understand the inherent dangers. They are experts at teaching people the basics of floating these local waterways.

river run, wisely

Inflatable rafts dot the Willamette River west of the put-in spot at Aspen and D streets in Springfield. River guide Aimee Goglia led the outing for elementary-age students from Eugene and taught them water safety. (Collin Andrew/The Register-Guard)



Staying safe

Goglia says one of the most important safety tips is to pick an appropriate river for your skill level and to never go alone.

“People should know the river and the runs and be aware of their skill level in relationship to the river,” she says. “People should ask questions about the hazards in the river.”

A common, and potentially deadly hazard, is a “strainer” — a piece of debris in the river that allows water to flow through but would trap a person. A downed log or a shopping cart could be a strainer.

If a person fell out of their raft, she should swim aggressively away from hazards such as strainers and only stand up when moving water is calf-deep or shallower. A swimmer also should swim toward the boat closest to him.

Because falling out of a boat is always a possibility, Goglia recommends always wearing a properly-fitted life jacket.

She said she sees a lot of people overuse ropes and lines in their boats and loose lines can cause people to get entangled in them.

“More ropes in the water causes more chaos,” she says. “People can get tangled on them.”

Above all, Goglia tells boaters to “remain calm.” She says panicking will only lead to bad decisions.

Enviro ethic

Safety extends beyond humans. Goglia wants boaters to follow the leave-no-trace environmental ethic to protect wildlife and the environment as well.

“We are passing through critters’ homes,” she says. “People should pack everything out that they brought and take only pictures on their trip.”

Feeding the animals only hurts them in the end — people food is unhealthy for wildlife, helps them lose their natural fear of people and can cause them to conflict with people.

Goglia also hopes boaters take a look at the shoreline before stopping. In some cases, killdeer or Canada geese are nesting and the presence of people could disrupt the nest.

Another common activity to avoid on the shoreline: urinating — it’s no joke.

On the Willamette and McKenzie rivers, the volume of water is so large that peeing in the river is preferable to on the shore. “It has more of an impact if people pee on shore,” she says.

Where to go

Goglia has an array of great float trips on the tip of her tongue, and she encourages people to call the River House for help when planning a trip.

For beginners looking for local, short day trips with Class I or II river stretches (that is, an easy, calm section with occasional rapids that are easy to maneuver around), Goglia recommends these:

Up the McKenzie River, put in at Helfrich and take out at Leaburg Dam or at the EWEB boat landing.

Also on the Mc-Kenzie, put in at Armitage County Park and take out on the Willamette River at Marshall Landing on the left, southeast of Junction City. There is also a river right take-out outside Coburg at Cross Roads Lane, the road where Agrarian Ales is located.

On the Willamette River, put in at Island Park in Springfield and take out at River House in Eugene (which does not have a boat ramp) or across the river at Valley River Center. For a shorter run, take out at Alton Baker Park.

On the Middle Fork of the Willamette River, put in at Pengra Access Boat Ramp west of Dexter Lake and take out at Clearwater Park in Springfield.

On the Willamette, put in at Aspen Street/Alton Baker Park and take out at Whitley Landing County Park, in north Eugene.

Dancing on the river

Many of Goglia’s raft guides are younger people who have done raft trips through the city’s summer camp program or through their local elementary school. Goglia loves to see kids connect with the water in the same way she has.

“I love rowing,” Goglia says. “There is a beautiful flow. It is such a dance on the river. When done right, you are finessing rather than muscling your way through a rapid.”

More Out and About articles »

Plan a trip

Following are a few resources to help plan a river outing:

McKenzie River Guides: A comprehensive listing of river guides and outfitters for the McKenzie River;

Oregon Paddle Sports: 520 Commercial St., offers classes and rentals for kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding and rafting. Also connects with rafting guides;

River House Outdoor Program: 301 N. Adams St. For information about river and float trips, call 541-682-5329; Also, Aimee Goglia leads private whitewater rowing lessons at $40 for a minimum of three hours. Call 541-682-6358 for an appointment or email

The University of Oregon Outdoor Program: 1225 E. 18th Ave. Rental equipment available for members and nonmembers. Summer hours are noon to 5 p.m. Monday through Wednesday; noon to 6 p.m. Thursday and Friday;

The Willamette Water Trail Guide: This is an excellent resource for planning a river trip, Goglia says, including equipment must-haves;

Life Jackets

Sponsored by the Lane County Sheriff’s Office and the Eugene Emerald Valley Rotary Club, the sixth annual Life Jacket Exchange Event is from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, and from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, at the Springfield Cabela’s, 2800 Gateway St. Here’s how it works: Bring outgrown or unused life jackets to Cabela’s and exchange it for a properly fitted child’s life jacket. Experts on hand will check for proper fit. Call 541-682-4179 for information.

Full article can be found at:

Add to FacebookAdd to DiggAdd to Del.icio.usAdd to StumbleuponAdd to RedditAdd to BlinklistAdd to TwitterAdd to TechnoratiAdd to Yahoo BuzzAdd to Newsvine