Jay Nicholas: Bug n’ Brew Fly Fishing Class at Ashland Fly Shop

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Jay Nicholas

[caption id="attachment_5779" align="aligncenter" width="435"]Jay Nicholas Jay Nicholas[/caption] Jay Nicholas is one of fly-fishing’s resident all-stars. If you haven’t seen one his recently published books like Advanced Intruder Strategies or Intruder Essentials, you have likely seen one of his many tying videos. A retired fish biologist, Jay has a fervent passion for salmon, steelhead, sea bass, albacore, and every other fish that swims off the Pacific coast. Join Jay Nicholas on Friday night in the Ashland Fly Shop for a book signing; and again for his tying class and presentation Saturday. Schedule: Friday, March 24, 2017
  • 2-5pm Book Signing and Q & A with Jay
Saturday, March 25, 2017
  • 1-4 pm: Steelhead Tying Class: Tube Flies ($50) Learn to tie steelhead tube flies like intruders, bunny and marabou leeches, and the silveynator. These are bread and butter flies that get 'em!
  • 4-6 pm: Tidewater Chinook Flies and Video with Jay Nicholas (Free!)

Bug n' Brew is a series of classes and workshops hosted by Ashland Fly Shop on the corner of Main St. and 3rd St in Ashland Oregon. This year (2017) you will have the opportunity to take a class from some of the Northwest’s most innovative steelhead fly tyers. Each class is $50, or all four classes at a discount of $180. Following the class, each tyer will give a free presentation on various topics. Check out the schedule here and get signed up while there’s still room!

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Oregon Cheese Festival 2017

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Oregon Cheese Festival March 18 & 19, 2017

Oregon Cheese Festival in Central Point at the Rogue Creamery

The 13th Annual Oregon Cheese Festival is open Saturday, March 18th from 11-5 at Rogue Creamery, 311 N. Front St., (Hwy. 99) in Central Point. Visitors will sample a variety Oregonian cheese: cow, sheep, and goat cheese.  What better to pair these cheese, than with Oregon wines, beer, cider, and other local artisan gourmet foods? For more information A $15 advance ticket ($20 at the door) for the Saturday festival, includes sampling and demonstrations. Children under 12 free. An additional $10 for wine flights. [caption id="attachment_4961" align="aligncenter" width="250"]Oregon cheese guild logo, cheese festival in Central Point Cheese Festival[/caption] The festival has been growing steadily every year. Last year we had 95 different vendors and attracted over 4,000 enthusiasts in one day. In 2017 we anticipate over 105 vendors and over 4000 guests. Culture Magazine, one of the leading periodicals in the cheese industry, called the Oregon Cheese Festival one of the Ten Best Cheese Festivals. For Friday the night before the festival there is the Cheese and Wine Makers Dinner,$125.00  6pm March 17th at the Inn at the Commons. [caption id="attachment_4967" align="aligncenter" width="267"]Gordon Edgar's book Cheesemonger the life on the wedge Image of Gordon Edgar's book cover Cheesemonger life on the wedge[/caption] Many people come to the Rogue Valley for the Oregon Shakespeare Festival and Crater Lake National Park, for lodging in Ashland Oregon visit the Chanticleer Inn B&B.

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Chamber Music Concert: Enso String Quartet

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Enso String Quartet

[caption id="attachment_5362" align="aligncenter" width="436"]Enso String Quartet Enso String Quartet[/caption] Enso String Quartet, founded at Yale University in 1999, has risen to the front rank of string ensembles. The quartet has won numerous awards, including top prizes at the Concert Artists Guild competition and the Banff International String Quartet Competition. Based in New York, the group has toured extensively, most recently in the US, Brazil, and Mexico. Enso is derived from the Japanese Zen painting of the circle, which represents many things: perfection and imperfection, the moment of chaos that is creation, the emptiness of the void, the endless circle of life, and the fullness of the spirit. Location: SOU Music Recital Hall EVENING SERIES: FRIDAY, MARCH 3, 2017 – 7:30PM Wolf – Italian Serenade Puccini – "I crisantemi" Ginastera – String Quartet no. 2, Op. 26 Ravel – String Quartet in F Major For more information on Chamber Music Concerts go to the website

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Ghost, the Musical at the Camelot Theatre

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Ghost, The Musical

March 8 - 26, 2017

GHOST, The Musical

Written by Bruce Joel Rubin Music & Lyrics by Bruce Joel Rubin, David A. Stewart, Glen Ballard

Directed by Olivia Harrison Tickets: $18 - $36

[caption id="attachment_5551" align="aligncenter" width="352"]Ghost the musical Ghost, the Musical[/caption] This musical is based on the Oscar-winning motion picture of the same name. This show is for everyone who sobbed through the film. After Sam is murdered on the street, he finds himself trapped as a ghost between this world and the next. He tries to communicate with girlfriend Molly through a phony psychic (Oda Mae Brown) in the hope of saving her from his murderer. The notion that we have a parallel existence beyond mortality is stunningly expressed in a show of video projections, artfully created by Camelot's Video Designer, Brian O'Connor. Camelot Theatre Company is located in Talent, Oregon in the beautiful Rogue Valley, just a few miles north of Ashland. We perform in the brand new state-of-the-art James M. Collier Theatre. Here is our Mission Statement:
To be of service to the Rogue Valley, Oregon, by producing high-quality affordable plays, musicals and musical events while providing a supportive environment for professional and amateur theatre artists and technicians and inspiring and training adults, teens and children in the theatre arts.
For more information and to purchase tickets to this performance at the Camelot Theatre go to their website.  

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Snowshoe Crater Lake!

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Snowshoe Crater Lake This Winter

[caption id="attachment_4653" align="alignright" width="150"]snowshoe crater lake Snowshoe Crater Lake[/caption] Popular and free ranger-guided snowshoeing is a wonderful way to see Crater Lake and learn about the local natural history, especially how plants, animals, and people have adapted to thrive in the snowiest inhabited place in America. The views are absolutely spectacular when you snowshoe Crater Lake -- and snowshoes are really the only way to explore the park because the park receives an average of 43 feet (516 inches) of snow per year.

The snowshoe "walks" are offered every weekend on Saturday and Sunday (and on some holidays) over the winter for as long as there's snow up to April 30, 2017. Visit the Crater Lake park's website for the latest in schedule and information -- you don't want to miss the opportunity to snowshoe Crater Lake.

Some details:

The "walks" begin at 1:00 p.m., last two hours, and cover one to two miles of moderately strenuous terrain. The ranger will lead the hike off-trail to explore the forests and meadows along the rim of Crater Lake.

Never snowshoed? No problem! No previous snowshoeing experience is necessary. Snowshoes are provided free of charge, and there is no cost for the tour. The rangers restrict the age starting at 8 years old. One should come prepared with warm clothing (dress in layers, it gets warm when you're moving about, but can get cold quickly when standing about) Wear water-resistant footwear (Gortex), I prefer to use gaiters as well.

Space on each tour is limited, and advance reservations are required. For more information and to sign up, call the park's visitor center at 541-594-3100. The visitor center is open daily from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. except on December 25. Groups of 10 or more people (such as scout troops, hiking clubs, and church groups) may be able to arrange for a separate tour just for their group.

Crater Lake National Park is open year-round, 24 hours a day. The park's north entrance and Rim Drive are closed to cars in the winter, but the west and south entrances are plowed daily and are open to automobiles throughout the year. There is no winter lodging in the park, but the Rim Village Café & Gift Shop is open daily except on November 26 and December 25. Spectacular views of Crater Lake can be obtained at Rim Village during periods of clear weather.


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Ashland Fly Shop: February 9th 2017

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Ashland Fly Shop Videos

Ashland Fly Shop is just down the street from the Chanticleer Inn, on the corner of 3rd and E. Main. Fly Fishing Report: Will from Ashland Fly Shop occasionally sends out reports. This one is in a video format.  Will talks about the weather, the rivers and where the winter fish are. Two Minute Drill -- Mending Your Spey Line For a how-to video on Mending your spey line

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Once Again: Rogue, Applegate Valleys Make a List

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Wine Travel Writers Are Discovering Southern Oregon

In the last few years, on a fairly regular basis, Southern Oregon wine region is making the wine travel writers lists. One of the latest "The Top 12 Underrated Wine Regions To Visit In 2017: A Month-By-Month Guide" by Lauren Mowery, a contributor to Forbes Magazine. Why?, you might ask, are international travel writers raving about this area? Well, because Southern Oregon is truly remarkable and very distinct from the Pinot Noir heavy wine region in northern Oregon. It's all about geography and diversity: for many decades this region has been globally recognized for its bio-diversity by biologists, and now wine makers are discovering that geographic diversity translates to good wine making. Three mountains ranges cross this region, Cascades, Klamath, and Siskiyou, forming highly diverse terrain, multiple micro-climates, and a number of fertile river valleys. Each mountain range unique in geology adds to the diversity of the terroir. Southern Oregon wine region has the most diverse growing conditions in the world. More kinds of grapes thrive here than any other wine growing region. A few years ago there were a little over 60 wineries, now there are over 150 offering over 70 different varieties of wine in 5 distinct regions. [caption id="attachment_5320" align="aligncenter" width="400"]Travel writers Cabernet Franc ready to pick! Cabernet Franc ready to pick! Photo by Ellen Campbell[/caption]

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Siskiyou Botanical Areas and Stewardship

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Native Plant Society Program: Siskiyou botanical areas and stewardship - Feb 16, 2017

Jeanine Moy will discuss rare plant species of the Klamath-Siskiyou Mountains, and examine a few of the 130 designated Siskiyou botanical areas created to protect our rare plants. Learn about ways to participate in a community of stewardship for these special places.
Jeanine Moy is a passionate naturalist and educator with a degree in Applied Ecology from Cornell University. She is outreach director for the Klamath-Siskiyou Wildlands Center and manages the Adopt-a-Botanical Area Program.
This program is free and open to the public.
When: February 16, Thursday, 7 pm
- Refreshments at 6:45 pm
- Meeting and program at 7:00 pm.
Location: Southern Oregon University Science Building, Room 161.
For more information go to Siskiyou Chapter Native Plant Society's Facebook page or contact Dave at 541-535-5355.
[caption id="attachment_5753" align="aligncenter" width="400"]Siskiyou Botanical Areas coral root Coral Root on Grizzly Peak,  Photo by Ellen Campbell[/caption]

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Local Hiking Trails in Ashland Oregon

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Local Hiking Trails In and Around Ashland

This winter, between rainstorms, Jim and I found some time to explore the local hiking trails in and around Ashland. My goal was to expand my first-hand knowledge of trails that are dog-friendly [on-leash! ] and/or easy to get to from the Chanticleer Inn. The City of Ashland has some online maps of Ashland's trails. So far, we especially enjoyed the trails in Hald Strawberry Park and Ashland Watershed. Judging from the over-wintering plants, evidence of last summer's growth, and evergreen trees, come springtime all of these trails will have an abundance of native flowers. There will be more blog posts describing additional trails and walks in and around Ashland; meanwhile here are two hikes:

Hald Strawberry Park

This park is situated west of Lithia Park, uphill from Granite St. A small network of trails wend through the chaparral habitat with native madrone, manzanita, and oak. On the highest point you will find a bench which provides a view toward the Rogue Valley. From the park's gentle hills there are many lovely views overlooking Ashland's downtown with the Bear Creek Valley and the Western Cascades in the background. To get to the park: from Granite St. take Strawberry Lane (it will be a bit steep uphill). The trail crosses Strawberry Lane just after Alnutt St. Take a right onto the trail -- one can go left, but it will be a dead end before too long. Once on the trail going north, you will come to a fork, I would opt for left. After that, consult the map as the trails in this park crisscross and loop around a knoll. It not difficult to find one's way out of the park, just go downhill, you will either come out the way you came, or onto Skycrest Dr. or Ditch Road.

One of Many Local Hiking Trails in the Ashland Watershed

This hike has a picnic table, so think about packing a snack.  There is a collection of local hiking trails in Ashland's Watershed, many of those closest to town (south and uphill) have Alice in Wonderland themed names. They are tightly networked and for the most part well marked, but I recommend bring a map. I always have a stack of the maps in the inn's foyer. For those who want approximately 1.5 to 2 hour roundtrip hike starting from and returning to the Chanticleer, here is one of several possibilities. Similar to Hald Strawberry, but with more conifers, this area will have native wildflowers in the spring. Directions: From the Chanticleer Inn walk uphill. It will be steep: just keep in mind you'll be going back down on the return! Gresham St. ends at Holly St., turn right and make an immediate left onto Gutherie. Then take Herbert which veers off (forks) to the right. The trailhead will be on your left between two residential houses. This trail will bisect Cottle-Philips Property and end at Ashland Loop Road. Turn left onto the road and look on the right for the Red Queen trail. Once on the Red Queen, you're in the Watershed, now choose one of the two below. Shorter loop: continue on Red Queen, pick up JubJub and stay to the right. In a very short distance you'll cross the BTI (this is the big red/white line on the map which is bike only), in a short distance turn right on Bandersnatch. Follow Bandersnatch as it switchbacks three times, evens out the trail, and crosses BTI again. A couple more switchbacks and you'll be on a knoll with a picnic table. Continue downhill and you'll spill out on Waterline. Continue downhill, you'll get on Glenview and then right/back up onto Waterline. About a block or so, you'll be back on Ashland Loop road and you can retrace your steps downhill to the inn. Longer Loop: continue on Red Queen, turn left onto JubJub. In a short distance you'll cross the BTI (this is the big red/white line on the map which is bike only), and almost immediately turn right/south onto Bandersnatch. Bandersnatch will parallel BTI going south for ~.25mi then cross BTI again and turn west and follow the switchbacks uphill. You'll once again cross over the BTI, in a couple more switchbacks and you'll be on a knoll with a picnic table. Continue downhill and you'll spill out on Waterline. Continue downhill, you'll get on Glenview and then right/back up onto Waterline. About a block or so, you'll be back on Ashland Loop road and you can retrace your steps downhill to the inn. [caption id="attachment_5733" align="aligncenter" width="375"]Ground cones on local hiking trails Easy to walk by thinking "that's a pine cone" but it's really Kopsiopsis (Boschniakia) strobilacea, or ground cones. Not uncommon on the local hiking trails. Photo by Ellen Campbell[/caption]  

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Dog Friendly Parks and Trails in Ashland Oregon

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Dog Friendly Parks and Trails

Frequently, guests who like to hike and walk with their dogs are disappointed when they discover Lithia Park is off limits for dogs -- even on leash. The sidewalk and the multi-purpose trail around the park is dog-friendly. Go here for a close up map of Lithia Park and the uphill trails west of the park, showing where you may walk with Fido. Additionally there are a number of city parks throughout Ashland, and trails up on the watershed that are dog friendly. There is also an off-leash dog park. Many trails and parks are easily accessible from the inn and downtown. Go here for the City of Ashland's map of the dog friendly parks and trails. This winter, weather permitting, Jim and I have been exploring some of the local close to the town trails. We especially enjoyed these walks: Hald Strawberry Park and Red Queen-Bandersnatch trails. For more detailed description of these trails, please follow the links.

Ashland Watershed

Ashland watershed stretches quite a bit south and west from Ashland, totaling 15,000 acres, it includes Mt. Ashland (7,533') at the furtherest south and four other peaks (ranging from 4,650' to 7,253') circling the watershed to the west and south. In future blog posts, I will describe more of these trails and how to get to the trailheads. Dogs on leash are welcome throughout the Ashland Watershed which is uphill and south of the town. The trails closer into town are very accessible from the Chanticleer inn on foot. They are well maintained. Some are hiking-only, some are biking-only, and others are mix use. Be sure to ask me for trail maps. The Chamber of Commerce hands them out for free. Many locals do not respect the leash-only rules. Some dogs stay close and will obey 'come back' commands. Unfortunately, many do not. The rules are in place for the safety of the dogs, other hikers, and wildlife. There is abundant wildlife in the hills, some will be dog aggressive: bear, cougar and deer. All of the watershed trails that are close to town have names of characters and creatures in Alice in Wonderland. No one has been able to tell me why or when that naming tradition got started, but it does make one feel like a true local when talking about the trails. [caption id="attachment_5704" align="aligncenter" width="300"]ready for dog friendly walking My favorite "puppy" Reba[/caption]  

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