Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Tillamook Forest Center

Capt. N has gone twice to the Tillamook Forest Center with Cub Scouts, but this was my first time going. I really enjoyed it. It's a great discovery center & the best part is that it's free (donations accepted, of course). The museum has a ton of information on the Tillamook Forest including plants, animals & how people use the area.


The building design is different. To be honest, I didn't even realize this was the main exhibit hall when we first drove up. Thank goodness the boys knew where to go. Not long after being there, the building grew on me. I actually think it's fantastic. It's environmentally friendly, many of the building materials are local and that cute pond in front has many uses including acting as a heat exchange for the cooling system. The long gutter-thing sticking out in between the 2 buildings collects rain water from the roof and dumps it into the pond.

It's hard to notice in this pic, but this is a 3D map with lights showing the different areas of the various fires during the Tillamook Burn.

We can't discuss forest fire safety without thinking about Smokey the Bear.

It's your turn to practice putting out the fire.

I loved all the hidden displays. This one showed what it looks like underground. But you had to pull it out to see it.

This shows all the life on a rotten log. There's even a huge magnify glass to get a closer peek.

Another hidden display. This one tells about the rings on a tree.

A Native American basket made from cedar.

Showing the changes in salmon eggs.

This, I thought, was fantastic - especially since we have been discussing the different layers in a forest. I'm only showing the understory in these pics, but they had all the layers.

A quick blurb telling the importance of the understory

A couple pull out drawers showing off what's important in that layer.

Replica of a forest fire lookout tower. Of course we climbed to the top. Inside the small room was a bed, a large map to chart the location of the fire & a radio to warn others.

View from the top.

We also went on a short hike out behind the museum.

I'm so glad we made the trip to this Forest Center. The kids had a great time & learned a bit more about the area we call home.


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