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A river runs through The Spiral Gallery

ESTACADA NEWS PHOTO: EMILY LINDSTRAND - Phil Lingelbach stands with several of the woodcarvings in his show 'A River Runs Through Us,' inspired by wildlife along the Clackamas River. The Spiral Gallery show continues through the month.

Phil Lingelbach’s connection to the Clackamas River runs deep, something that he celebrates in his upcoming show at the Spiral Gallery, “A River Runs Through Us.”

Lingelbach’s show features wood carvings, photos and paintings inspired by the Clackamas River.

“I wanted to encourage people to spend time at the Clackamas River,” Lingelbach said. “A privilege of living here is that our forefathers left us this great land.

Lingelbach grew up on a farm in the Estacada area that had a stream called Lingelbach Creek, a tributary of the Clackamas River, that supplied the early city of Estacada with its water.

Lingelbach believes the Clackamas can be a great setting for adventure – it’s something he’s experienced in his own life. As a youngster Lingelbach’s family would go fishing and exploring along the river.

His appreciation for the river grew in his 20s when he and his friends would go rafting. In the 1970s, Lingelbach helped a foster son get a summer job with the Forest Service building trails and repairing campsites.

“It was a great experience for him,” Lingelbach said.

Lingelbach’s love of the river also inspired him to direct the Best Dam Run, a 10K race along the Clackamas River, for eight years.

Lingelbach, who doesn’t typically work with multiple mediums, said it’s rewarding to see his finished works and enjoyed stretching himself to try new things

“It’s been great to see it all come together,” he said.

A reception for Lingelbach’s show will be 6-8:30 p.m. Friday, March 4 at The Spiral Gallery, 341 S. Broadway St. The show will last until March 27.

Lingelbach hopes his show will encourage people to take up the call to adventure on the Clackamas River.

“The roily rapids are calling your name,” he writes in his artist statement for the show. “The vistas suck away your breath. Like the wild, endangered steelhead and salmon called by their DNA to return to ancestral waters you must return again and again.”