Photo detail

Stories this photo appears in:

Illness treated differently now

Be grateful for vaccines, medicine

People’s attitudes toward spreading diseases have changed in the last century. When I was I was a child, if someone in a family came down with something contagious, the health department would post a sign on the front of their house, warning others to keep out. As I recall, the one for scarlet fever was in bright red.

Underground wonders astonish visitors

In several places in the United States there are caves that attract people to come and see these natural wonders. I have been to the Gardner Cave on the east edge of the state twice.

Tease photo

Writers acknowledge the work of others

Books inform in laymen’s terms

I have been through my copy of Alt and Hyndman’s “Northwest Exposures” in an attempt to find a certain bit of knowledge but have run out of time.

Tease photo

Holiday brings memories of critters

It has been a long time since I have heard the cry of the pika, a small member of the hare family. While the North Cascades Highway was being built, the roadbed was in, but not yet surfaced, as far as Lone Fir Campground. If you wanted to go farther up, you walked.

Tease photo

What’s the next big scientific proposal?

We will have to temper reactions when it arrives

In 1995 David Alt and Donald Hyndman published a book called “Northwest Exposures.” A fat (442 pages) book, it was a physical and historical geologic history of the Northwest states, including scraps of Montana and California and, once, I think, a piece of Utah along with Washington, Idaho and part of British Columbia.

Pets can perceive more than we realize

Family dog once stopped a child from being hit by a moving vehicle

It is difficult to impossible to know how much animals perceive of our wishes and our circumstances. But it happens, and sometimes with startling results.

Pneumonia vaccines can save lives

Lab technicians show heroism in battling disease

The other day, while I was at my clinic (for something else), I was offered flu and pneumonia shots and accepted. In my family, pneumonia is a word that commands attention. My grandmother died of it when in her 30s, leaving, in addition to her husband, three children, the oldest of whom was 9.

Tease photo

Scientists’ risks benefit us all

Research leads to greater knowledge of diseases, nature

There have been times when geologists and other scientists have undergone certain hazards to obtain the information they sought. Take, for instance, John Wesley Powell and his hazard of boating down the Grand Canyon with his company. They were warned of its perils, but lured by the information to be gained by such a traverse of the great river in its mighty canyon and what could be learned from seeing it close up.

Trees change through the seasons, years

Colors provide a rich backdrop

“This land is afforesting,” my husband told me more than once.

Tease photo

Remembering holidays and traditions

Give gifts that last in the hearts of your loved ones

When I was a child, my family had a custom of letting each child specify one Christmas gift he or she wanted.

Charles Lyell’s research often questioned ‘known’ facts

Up to the time of Charles Lyell, born in England in 1797, there was general belief that the world was made in 4004 B.C.

Locals fall into winter preparation ritual

Every year there are certain things that householders do as fall develops. Given the tendency of our climate to do things suddenly, sometimes it is hard to see a seasonal change appear.

Tease photo

Cherish interactions with area’s wildlife

Story reveals a friendship between people and deer

There has been some mention of the greatest gift man can give. It has come up in connection with animals, too.

Erosion changes the landscape

What was highest was cut down; the lowest was raised

Somewhere in one of our old hymnals is the line: “The valleys shall be exalted, the lofty hills made low …”

Slides can vary from fun to terrifying

Word has many different meanings

The English language contains words that have multiple uses, and “slide” is one of them. Just now, one of those meanings is in the headlines, but let’s look at a number of them, beginning with the more innocent ones.

Frequency of recent storms is unusual

In our storms, rain follows lightning

When George Stewart wrote his book “Storm,” published in 1941, he named the storm Maria; the author stipulated that it should be with a long I (Mar-aye-uh).

Cats do more than control rodent levels

Exploring the Okanogan with Elizabeth Widel

Let us consider cats, specifically house cats. In an effort to be official about it, I dug out my “Encyclopedia Americana” and looked them up. There followed columns of information, more than I ever wanted to know.

Tease photo

Advances in technology speeding up

Exploring the Okanogan Elizabeth Widel

Society has gone from typewriters to tiny computers

Nature doesn’t always give a warning

Concrete cellar protects family from twisters

My grandfather built the first frame house on the Nebraska prairie, and his daughter and son-in-law farmed in the same area.

‘Storm’ captures essence of weather

George Stewart book addresses impact on people

I can’t remember when I first heard of and read George Stewart’s book, “Storm.”

Landscape reveals clues of area’s past

Continental lands keep shifting even in the present day

I remember being impressed at the idea of our continent being slowly built by bits and pieces of continents being added to it.

Tease photo

Science writer answers rock mysteries

Williams tracked down statistics of historic floods

Two weeks ago I raised the question of the argument over the source of water for creating the landforms in the channeled scablands in southeastern Washington.

Tease photo

North Cross ranks among favorite spots

Liberty Bell stands as a signature view of the highway

I don’t know that I could name my favorite place in the county. There are so many lovely ones! But among them surely would have to be the North Cascades Highway, locally known as the North Cross.

Aerial photographs verify historic floods

Big water carved out much of the state’s landscape

When J. Harlan Bretz claimed that the channel scablands were formed by flood waters, he was not believed. Where, they asked, will you get that in a desert?

Tease photo

Geologist ‘listened to rocks’ to find truth

Catastrophic floods altered landscape

It was a scientific brouhaha that lasted for decades and saw the solution of a geologic problem by aviation and, finally, Landsat photography.

Powell’s story fascinates, even today

His courage opened up a new chapter in history

John Wesley Powell, as any good Methodist might guess, was born to a Methodist pastor, in 1834. His father may have planned teaching or the ministry for him, but from the outset his interests were strongly scientific.

Complexities fill the English language

Many words have multiple meanings

“I’m glad I was born to the English language,” a woman told me once, “because it is so easy to learn.” Really?!

Collier’s book shows how nature works

It must have been 50 years or so ago that I read for the first time about the inter-relatedness of natural things.

Electronic pendant could be a life-saver

Device’s signal seems able to reach everywhere

A pendant worn around the neck of a participant carries a signal that can bring help. They call it a medical alarm, and it is part of a network that reaches nationwide.

Incomplete symphonies given new life

‘New’ recordings of Schubert’s work shed musical light

When Franz Schubert began writing his 10th Symphony, he was a mortally sick man. I have wondered many times if he knew how sick he was. He had to know he had an illness, but did he know how bad it was?

Early vaccinations meant much travel

Several shots are streamlined for three doses in one

They were the doctors Dick, a husband-and-wife medical research team who, working for years, had developed an inoculation against scarlet fever. It was a dreaded disease which, if one lived through it, left a child with a damaged heart.

Shows require an entire army backstage

Directors are just one piece needed for a production

This is not a concert review, but it is going to talk about the Okanogan Valley Orchestra and Chorus productions. I am thinking of the small army of people involved every time a show is given.


Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Sign in to comment