Despite growing up in the Northwest (or perhaps, because of it) there are so many things on my Pacific Northwest to-do list, it’s a little overwhelming. I’m so excited to take advantage this summer and go exploring. Here’s just some of the things I’ve been dreaming about:
Last Saturday night, I was sitting in a friends house chatting around the kitchen table about all the awesome things that we need to do this summer. I mentioned we should head up Marys Peak to watch the sunrise later in the summer. Marys Peak is the highpoint of the Central Oregon Coast Range and the highpoint for Benton County.
As it turned out, neither of them had ever been up Marys Peak at all (even though one had lived nearby his whole life) and they were excited to go. In fact, they were so excited that within twenty minutes we were in the car with sleeping bags and some warm clothing. Sprocket happily hopped in the back of the car and away we went.
Arriving at the end of the long twisty road that takes you nearly to the top of the peak, I pitched a tent for Sprocket and I just outside the car. We promptly fell asleep after setting my alarm for 5am. (Sprocket, as usual, was an awesome tent cuddler. His nose immediately found its way into my sleeping bag.)
Waking in the dawn twilight, I realized that it was sort of cloudy so we wouldn’t get the full sunrise effect from the mountain: when it’s really clear all the Cascade peaks from Rainier to Shasta are silhouetted by the light and the furthest peaks disappear the moment the sun rises over Mount Jefferson. Since we’d driven all the way to the mountain we hiked the 0.7 miles to the top despite the clouds and watched the sun rise over the valley, picking out I-5, the Willamette River, Eugene, Corvallis, and other small towns.
Starting the day on a mountaintop is never a bad plan
F and Karen’s last day of riding took them from Indian Creek to Moab via Lockhart Basin and Kane Creek. Sprocket and I headed directly for town, expecting them to move quickly. When we arrived and found we had some extra time to kill, I stopped in at Back of Beyond Books and picked up the latest issue of High Country News. We retreated to the yard of the Manti-La Sal National Forest ranger station (a great place to relax!) and enjoyed the shade.
When our motorcycle riders arrived, we transferred gear around and said our goodbyes to Karen and headed north. When we got to Salt Lake City we decided to head to Wendover and camp above town and watch the pretty lights.
In the morning, we woke up to a beautiful sunrise over the Salt Flats and downtown Wendover. The light on the rocks behind our campsite was pretty fantastic too.
After we packed up camp (and I was done taking pictures), we headed west on I-80. I’d never been on this stretch of highway which I always find exciting. In Winnemucca, we headed north across the lonely desert towards Oregon.
We spent the night in Klamath Falls before heading onwards. We stopped at the Collier Logging Museum near Chiloquin, Oregon. They had lots of cool old machinery including this sweet early Caterpiller Tractor. After a brief stop at Diamond Lake, we were on our way to Salem.
Once we closed on our property in Colorado, the first order of business was to head back to the Northwest to see our families before going to Idaho to get our stuff. While we were in Oregon the weather was absolutely amazing so we called Ezra and headed out to the coast. Sprocket absolutely loved playing in the waves and we really enjoyed the sunshine!
I’ve been horrible about posting this week. It’s just been kinda busy and internet access hasn’t been super forthcoming for me. Anyway, it’s Friday for most of the world (I don’t ever know what day it is anymore) and since Sprocket mentioned his awesome 1st snow experience on his reverse bucket list last week I figured I’d share some of the cute.
On our way from Oregon to Idaho we stopped and took some pictures at Multnomah Falls. Both F and I had been there before but it is really pretty. There are lots of waterfalls in the Columbia Gorge, especially this time of year, but this is the “one.” I even think it is quite prettily framed by the bridge.
We had dinner Sunday night at F’s brother Skye’s house. Skye and his wife, Ashley, have quite the collection of animals on their “miniature farm.” They have a soft spot for all sorts of unique animals. We got to meet their miniature donkeys, draft horses, fainting goats, llama, and alpaca.
After the Christmas in Oregon was over it was time for Team 3Up to lead a caravan of fun back to Idaho. Unfortunately, loaded down with a regular refigerator, an RV refrigerator and freezer (for the cabin), a freezer, and a trailer axle the little red Jeep just wasn’t up for it. Right in Portland (THANK GOD) the clacking started and steam started coming out the exhaust. We got off at the next exit and had to declare my car dead. On our way to Idaho. With a ton of shit. And six friends expecting to stay at our house that night and go to the cabin tomorrow.