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Showing posts from October, 2019

Saturday, October 26-Good News and Bad News About Lake Tahoe!

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We got to Lake Tahoe about dark-30 on Friday night. We drove through Truckee (on the CA side) down to the lake and then around the Nevada side to Zephyr Cove RV Park. We’re about four miles North of Stateline.

First the good news: Lake Tahoe is a gift! The water is almost as blue as the water in Crater Lake but LT is much bigger. The lake is roughly rectangular with the dimensions being roughly ten by twenty miles. Everyone who has ever been here has a favorite part of the lake. The favorite part of LT for Diana and I has always been the area around Emerald Bay. Here are a couple of pics:


Now for the bad news: I took a pretty nasty fall. I’m okay but here’s a quick summary: I have a broken right thumb and the orthopedic surgeon put a pin in it, with a couple of stitches, so it will heal correctly. My left knee has a hairline fracture so it’s immobilized with a flexbrace. Several stitches in my head and that pretty much does it. Look at the rocks at the bottom of the lower picture abov…

Thursday,October 24-Going Inland

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We’ve been going TO the Pacific Ocean and AWAY from the Pacific Ocean for months now. Today we left the PO for what may be years. We’re headed roughly South now to escape the snow that’s coming. Then we’ll spend the winter going from West to East across the Southern states. Early Spring next year will have us following Spring North up the Eastern Seaboard to the Maritime Provinces of Eastern Canada. We don’t speak any French but we’re going to brush up on conversational French since French is the predominant language spoken in Eastern Canada. Canada IS officially a bi-lingual nation.

Anyway, here are our parting shots of the Pacific shoreline:


Going East from the Pacific Coast Highway (US 101), we chose a small highway to Red Bluff on I-5. We thought it would be a nice cruisin’ 45-50 mph. The key word there was THOUGHT because it turned out to be a 20-25 mph road just full of switchbacks! That slowed us down a lot and then we ran into a construction zone where traffic was completely s…

Wednesday, October 23-Some Really Big Trees!

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We had been to Redwoods NP several times in the past but seeing this gigantic living organisms never fails to make you feel like an ant living in a world of humans. These are the tallest living objects on earth! This first pic isn’t the biggest tree but it’s one of the most convenient to locate. You may have to enlarge the pic to read some of the details about this tree but it’s worth it:

Here’s ANOTHER pic of Diana near the root system of a redwood that fell during a windstorm (it seems that redwoods have no taproot and the spreading roots don’t penetrate deeply into the earth):

The trees seem to grow in groves so here’s a sky-ward pic of a few of the tall-as-a-30-story-building monsters:

We finished hiking and took a coastal one-lane road to the mouth of the Klamath River. There we saw the most astounding things taking place. We think there were 30 or 40 seals swimming up and down the river in hot pursuit of the salmon. The King Salmon were, of course, following their instincts to g…

Tuesday, Oct 22nd-Back to the Pacific

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We had been inland since our one day trip from Portland to the Oregon coast a couple of weeks ago. We got back to the Pacific at Crescent City, CA today. Speaking of California, why do I call California The Cereal State? This is an oldie but a goodie! I call California The Cereal State because it’s full of fruits, nuts, and flakes!

You know that I’m joking about that but CA does have its share of, shall we say, unusual people. Most of the people I know from CA are very friendly. Having said that, I’ll say that CA is my favorite state when it comes to natural beauty and I’ve been to 49 of ‘em! San Francisco is everyone’s favorite city, Big Sur is the second most beautiful meeting of land and sea, and Lake Tahoe?

Can you guess where we had lunch today?

IMHO, the most beautiful place where land meets the sea is the Na Pali coast on Kauai. This pic is there from three years ago:

Here’s part of the CA coast although it’s not Big Sur:

We’ll be in the Redwoods today and tomorrow. Here’s Dian…

Monday, October 21st-blue-Blue-BLUE!

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Today was a mostly clear day so Crater Lake was so blue it is breathtaking! I took about 15-20 pics of the lake and this one is my favorite:

The walk around the rim is like walking through a postcard! In case you want a picture that is just blue, try this one:

Here’s a pic of Wizard Island near the West shore of the lake:

Wizard Island is another geological oddity because it’s the only place in the lake where lava continued to erupt after Mt. Mazama collapsed. We’ve taken the boat trips to WI in the past and walked down into the Crater at the top of the island. THAT Crater is 300 feet across and 90 feet deep-weird, I know!

I tried to explain, in my own sick and twisted way, how Crater Lake was created. We saw this on our walk around the lake:

You may have to enlarge the pic but reading it provides a very brief, clear explanation of Crater Lake came to be! It GREW, BLEW, FELL, and FILLED!

Sunday, October 20th-Crater Lake National Park

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The geological forces that created Crater Lake are so unusual they are almost hard to believe! Mt. Mazama WAS a mountain where CL is today that had risen, through volcanic eruptions, to over 12,000 feet in elevation. About 7,700 years ago, Mt. Manama had ANOTHER violent eruption that lasted a week or more. The geologists estimate that eruption was 100X more powerful than the eruption that rocked Mt. St Helens in 1980. That massive eruption left the magma chamber, miles deep under the surface of the earth, almost empty. The weight of the mountain collapsed on its own now-empty foundation!

This collapse meant the top 5,000 feet of Mt. Mazama fell into the empty magma chamber below and left a caldera six miles across. Okay, you’ve got a hole in the center of the mountain that’s six miles across-that’s NOT a lake! With 44 FEET of average annual snowfall and the typical Pacific NW rainfall, the caldera filled with water over the next 7,000 years. No water flows into Crater Lake from rivers…

Saturday, October 19th-Back to Nature!

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Yesterday we camped in a small town South of Eugene, OR. I checked the Gas Buddy app for the cheapest diesel near there and it redirected me to Cottage Grove, OR. I knew I’d heard of Cottage Grove but it took a few minutes of thrashing around the old and tired memory banks to remember WHY . . . . Do you the late 70’s raunchy comedy called Animal House? Well, the famous parade near the end of the movie was filmed almost 40 years ago on Main St in Cottage Grove! After we drove there, we had to come back and watch the movie again. It’s still funny! Main St still looks the same as in the movie except the trees are bigger. 
Today we got to Prospect, OR near Crater Lake NP. We found some hiking trails near the Rogue River and here are a couple of pics of the natural beauty of Oregon:




Thursday, October 17th-A Huge Surprise!

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To set the stage for today, I have to explain a HUGE coincidence that happened to me about 8.5 years ago: I was on that silly motorcycle trip around the contiguous 48 states (www.alaparoundamerica.blogspot.com). I was in a state park north of San Francisco near the coast and I was riding through the campground hoping to find some bikers camping there. I was tired of paying almost $40 for a place to pitch my tent. My plan was to approach some other motorcyclists camping there and offer them $10 to let me pitch my tent off to the side of their campsite.

I rode around the campground and there no motorcyclists there. I saw a family camping and I decided “What the heck? I’ll ask THEM.” I parked and met the man of the family. His name was Aaron. I explained my plan and he said sure but we won’t take your $10. THEN his wife walked over and then I realized they were Aaron and Amy Redelsberger from Cascade! Aaron had graduated just before Diana and I got there in the Fall semester of 1999 so I…

Saturday, October 12th-Voodoos, Powell’s, and Saturday Market

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The KEEP PORTLAND WEIRD city catchphrase lives on! Diana is in Dallas so I decided to take in three of Portland’s most notable attractions. First was Voodoo Donuts. If you think your donut shop does some weird things with dough, go to www.voodoodonut.com and look at some of their creations! The only pic I took today was the door:

I read on their website that they are opening their second location in, of all places, HOUSTON! So if any of you reading this are in the Houston area, you might go there once it opens. Trust me, the weirdness alone is worth the trip!

The Voodoo Donut shop is in Old Town Portland so if you’re there on a Saturday morning, why not go ‘splorin’ Saturday Market? It’s small business capitalism at its very best-hundreds of booths spread over a bunch a square blocks selling every imaginable product. Plus the side attraction is all the unique and unusual people there. I saw full arm, leg, and head tattoos, a bearded man (?) wearing a dress, several people rollin’ lega…

Friday, October 11th-Random Pics

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Monday, October 7th-Memories and One Surprise

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Today we drove some around Portland-aka “The Hipster Capital of America.” Yes, the spirit of KEEP PORTLAND WEIRD lives on! We drove by Cascade, our home in Gresham, and had dinner at Chang’s Mongolian Grill-always a treat! We have mixed feelings about Portland and our 10 years there.

One thing we noticed about Portland is the extremely large homeless population. You don’t just notice this population hanging around at shelters or even asking for food/money at the freeway entrances. What shocked us is the number of homeless “Camps” for lack of a better word. We have probably seen 15-20 of these spread around Portland. Here a pic Diana took of one of them on I-5 just North of downtown:

Many of these are under overpasses so the homeless don’t get wet in the rain. Diana and I are amazed that the city allows this. I sure don’t have all the answers to the homeless and/or mental health issues going on in the USA but the Hipster Capital needs to take some action..... I cannot imagine the sanit…

Sunday, October 6th-The “Fruit Loop!”

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Today we re-created a daytrip we’ve taken many times before. Here’s the short version: We drove out the old Columbia River Highway through the gorge:
To Multnomah Falls
Through the Hood River Valley
Around the back (East) of Mt Hood
To Timberline Lodge:

Saturday, October 5th-The Pumpkin Patch

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We spent most of today at a Pumpkin Patch with Chelsea, Nate, and adorable little Isla! It’s the first time we had met Isla and she is truly magical! Here are a few pictures from the day:


While we were at the pumpkin patch, we ran into Lisa and Kawika Lyons! On the motorcycle trip eight years ago, I accidentally ran into Amy and Aaron Redelsberger-this trip we ran into Lisa and Kawika! We’d seen pictures of their two children but we had never met Lindsey and Logan. What a wonderful surprise!

Thursday, October 3rd-To Portland and Some Random Pics

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We left Randle, WA today and landed on Hayden Island in the Jantzen Beach area of Portland. It was, of course, raining when we got to OR. We’ll be here two weeks because Diana is going to spend one of those weeks in Dallas with some of her friends and with Sara’s family. Tomorrow we’re going to Camp 18 for breakfast and then down the coast from Seaside, to Canon Beach, to Tillamook (you know why!), and then back here.

Here are a few more random pics that I haven’t yet posted:














Wednesday, October 2nd-A Herd of Deer in Packwood

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We were tired after our 12-14,000 steps day so. We stopped at Cruiser’s in Packwood for a burger and fries before heading home (the camper!) and we saw this across the street:
Oh, and here’s a pic of us by Myrtle Falls with the mountain behind us:

Wednesday, October 2nd-The Mountains Are Out!

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Weather report: It was 34 degrees when we got up this morning! (Now that you’re fully bummed-out over the heat you’re having, I’ll continue)

We spent Monday in Mt Rainier NP but didn’t get to see the summit but today made up for it! To start with, we hiked almost 800 vertical feet above the Paradise Visitor Center. We were still 8,000 feet below the 14,410 summit but it sure seemed a lot closer:
We turned to the South and got this view of Mt St Helens:
You can always distinguish Mt St Helens because the 1980 eruption left it without a cone-shaped summit. If you enlarge this pic, you can see the walls of the crater and “Muffy” still growing. Then we turned to the SE and had this view of Mt Adams:
We were hiking along enjoying the beautiful views when we heard a screeching whistle and it was a marmot:

We saw a bear cross our trail about 100 yards in front of us:

Tuesday, October 1st-Ever See the Movie “Deliverance?”

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Today marks six months that Diana and I have lived and traveled in the RV. Do we have disagreements? Yes, that’s natural but our disagreements are only on days that end in “Y!” 😍

I’m asking about this movie because we feel like that where we were today! We picked up a Lewis County Trail Guide and found two trails that looked good for exploring-Covel Creek #228 and Covel Creek Falls #228A. There was only one sign on the highway for a trail so ..... we struck off looking for Kraus Ridge Trail in Gifford Pinchot National Forest. The sign should have warned us but noooooooo!
The first thing we noticed about the one-mile road to the trail is that it was very narrow, one-way, with very few places to turn around or park. Do you agree? (Yes, we drove this “road!”)
We found the new trail but about a half-mile along, a skunk waddled across the trail, so we hustled back to the campground to see this view of our neighbor’s camper with the sun still on the mountains: