"Two roads diverged in a yellow wood... And sorry I could not travel both. I took the one less traveled by. And that has made all the difference." --Robert Frost

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Last Days in OR before rushing to back to CA

Mt. Hood
Gone Creek NF

Our next couple of days were filled with a hike to Tamanawas Falls and a couple special adventures.
A sneak peak to where we are headed.  You'd think by now we'd be burned out on waterfalls.  Nah.  They are so pretty and usually the trails follow rivers or streams and you get to cool off in the mist at the end.  Besides, is there any such thing as a bad hike?  (Well I guess I can think of one)

I'd say it was an easy hike with a couple moderate rocky parts.
Cold Spring Creek
It's a nice trail because even on a hot day you're in the shade most of the time.  Hurley loved that he could cool off in the water most of the time.

You can't tell, but on the above boulder, on the top-middle, are two green handprints.  I'd like to know the story on those.

Here is the moderate rocky part.

The colors along this cliff side were so pretty.  The shale is constantly sliding down.  Careful.

And here we are after a short hike to Tamanawas Falls. One hundred feet tall.
Hurley's favorite part of hiking.  Plopping in the cold water.
Better perspective of the falls with some people in the picture.

There's always some nuts (usually the younger folks) who decide to go off-trail and walk on the mossy rocks.  Good thing no one got hurt.
Here was a cute Pika that seemed to be looking for it's momma or companion.  It kept popping out of the rocks and then back in.  It didn't seem to mind too much that we were there.  A Pika is a small mammal, with short limbs, very round body, big rounded ears, and no external tail.  They are usually found in alpine elevations.

And we're back at the trailhead.  We returned to camp and got ready for another awesome shared dinner with Lee and Trace.  We love taking turns cooking and trying out different recipes on each other.  We always have great meals!
And another great fire.

These kids were walking along the shallows of the lake looking for crawdads with their flashlights.  So cute to see kids out in nature just having a good time, laughing and playing together.

Monday was Lee's 50th Birthday and we all wanted to do something special.  This "50" sign was made by Trace and has traveled around the US with different RVers and used as we all turned 50.  Or in my case last year Trace altered it to 55.  I know have it and perhaps it will show up at some other birthdays!  We had picked up some Teagarita that we noticed he liked when he discovered it back in Pahrump, NV in April.  Knowing that Lee loves him some Apple Pie, when Steve spotted a bottle of Apple Pie Hole Canadian Whiskey, he grabbed one of those too.  We weren't sure what it would taste like but we all agreed it was good stuff!
So, what to do to celebrate?  Lee wanted to go to an Escape Room.  Trace found Hour to Midnight in Portland and Lee really wanted to do the Assassin's Deadly Game.  Usually there are 8 people in a room.  It could be a bunch of your friends or a mixture of people you don't' know.  We really wanted to do it with just the four of us even though we'd still have to pay for 8.  Steve called and told them we were celebrating a 50th birthday and could we get a discount?  They ended up being very generous and giving us a 25% room discount.  Nice.  Our task was:  Your team has entered the FBI's cadet program, and your first task is to enter the safe-house of one of the greatest assassins to date. You have been tasked to track down the assassin and help keep his next target alive.
Getting ready to enter our room.  Look up Lee!
Our task was:  Your team has entered the FBI's cadet program, and your first task is to enter the safe-house of one of the greatest assassins to date. You have been tasked to track down the assassin and help keep his next target alive. We had to find hints and clues to help us disarm 5 deadly bombs within one hour.  It took us 5 minutes over to finish.  It was a blast and we all discovered different parts to it.  It was our second time and we'd LOVE to do more of this.
Our Victory Picture, still alive at the end!
After all that sleuthing, we went to a Chinese Buffet and had a great dinner.  On the way home we drove through the tiny community of Viola outside of Estacada to look for the oldest geocache, the first ever placed back in 2003.
 It was very easy to find.  How cool is that?!

Our 8 days at Timothy Lake with Lee and Trace were a blast!  We would've had a few more here before heading up into Washington for the next couple of months but I got one of those phone calls the next day that you don't want to get.  I've already written about this a few blogposts back, but my Dad ended up in the ER undergoing emergency surgery.  The outcome wasn't the best with his health and age so we rushed off the next day to get back to Placerville, CA.  Of course we had a sudden brake problem that had to be fixed first.  This took many frantic phone calls from the 4 of us and Lee ended up saving the day by making a deal with a parts guy and then driving 3 hours round trip to get it on his only day off.  So while we departed under sad circumstances early, we are very grateful for these true friends.  As of today, Aug. 30, my Dad has made an amazing recovery and is doing very well. 

Thursday, July 26, 2018

Fishing on Trillium Lake, Oregon

Mt. Hood, Oregon
Gone Creek NF

Today is Fishing Day!  Lee and Trace recommended going to Trillium Lake for kayaking and fishing.  They did warn us to go early as it gets very crowded later in the day.
The view was everything they said it would be!  When we put in there was hardly any one there.  I was surprised how little the lake was.  Above you see there is no one on the lake yet.  A few hours later there were people all over it!

 We caught quite a bit of fish, but they were all small.

 Catching small ones is better than catching none!  We had a great time.

 At the north end of the lake it was really pretty.  Lots of lily pad inlets and trees in the water. 

It eventually got very crowded and we couldn't wait to get out.  We went home and cleaned up and drove over to see the Famous Timberline Lodge which is almost atop Mt. Hood.
 Turned out there was a gorgeous line-up of Italian cars there.  There sure were some pretty ones! I'll take this blue one.

 What color would you call this?  Mettalic Rose?  Very interesting.

The Shining—the horror movie based on Stephen King's novel of the same name that starred Jack Nicholson, was filmed here.  He played a struggling writer and recovering alcoholic who is driven insane by the residents of the hotel.  Now were going to have to watch this again.

 We had a drink on the balcony overlooking the fancy cars and the view.
 The balcony door was huge, like you'd see in a castle.

 Boy we could really feel the elevation walking around the grounds.  Time to get back to camp.  
We're so glad we bought one of these propane fire pits.  Turns out that, especially in the West, there are burn restrictions in almost every state once summer comes.  Steve really loves his fires, so this has turned out great.  It's very rare that these aren't allowed.  Lee and Trace loved it so much they ordered one the next day!
We watched the sun go down and the fisherman bring their boats in.  Ah, another great evening!
We heard someone is turning 50?
Stay with us as we try to diffuse some bombs and search for the oldest geocache in Oregon!