Sunday, July 11, 2010
Remember back on July 4th when we mentioned Hal had a trip to the hospital and was put on antibiotics? Well…the antibiotics have not been effective soooooooo…the best decision was to head home at “lightening speed.”
Our last night on the road (the 10th) was spent in Laramie, Wyoming with dinner “out on the town” and our final card game.
We all had a wonderful trip, filled with laughter, and great memories. If you have been following our blog, you will know we saw some amazing country. What a beautiful and diverse country we are blessed to call home.
Rick and I can’t wait for our next adventure. JM
Guest Blogger – Hal (again)
This is your guest blogger Hal again due to the fact that our regular blogger is overwhelmed because she is so far behind (5 days) in her blogging!
We left Lewiston, ID on Wednesday, the 7th and drove through some of the most awesome country we have seen so far on this trip.
We stopped at the Nez Perce Indian National Historic Park and Reservation.
From there we proceeded south on highway 95 which was another white knuckle drive (for the passengers only). We arrived in McCall, ID around 4pm and had dinner sitting at the Northwest Passage Restaurant right on the Payette Lake.
We are in Ponderosa State Park, which is directly on the lake. It is absolutely beautiful. And the smell of the Ponderosa pines is like showering with Pine-Sol.
We spent the day looking around town and taking a morning and evening scenic drive around the lake – we even saw Bambi! See Photos
It is about 7pm and here we sit eating “shrimp and steak off the barbie” enhanced by a fine California wine. As soon as we are done our resident fire expert (Lois) will have a roaring fire going.
One of us, I won’t mention names (JoAnne) slept all afternoon so we will be up watching the stars all night...good night all, see ya soon. HL
Saturday, July 10, 2010
Guest Blogger – Hal
Hal again, we’re still in Joseph, OR
Around 6:00am while JoAnne was sitting with Sandy and her morning coffee…three deer stepped around the RV within 6 feet and scared the “stuff out of her.” They just stood there looking at Sandy as JoAnne went in the camper and got her camera. They were still there when she came out as you can see from the pictures. See Photos
We departed Joseph at mid morning heading for Lewiston ID. Another hair raising road (lost count of them) and stopped in the state of Washington for lunch right along the Snake River over looking Hells Canyon.
We crossed the snake into Idaho and spent the night on the eastern side of the snake in Lewiston at Hells Gate Campground on the banks of the Snake.
Just another day in paradise (LOL). HL
Monday, July 5, 2010
Blue skies, sunshine, rushing sounds from the Wallowa River…just a beautiful day!
The plan today is to kick back and get ready for our fabulous 4th of July BBQ and fireworks over Wallowa Lake. This also gives us a chance to catch up on errands, and upload blog posts at the “resort” office since we have not had any Internet connection in what seems like forever!
Rick took a hike up to Wallowa Falls. Lois & Hal read and rested. I took the time and to sort through the gazillion photos, and write several blogs for upload. See Photos
Unfortunately Hal was not feeling well. He made the decision to go and get checked out and is doing great! But it’s always better to be safe than sorry…especially on the road.
Rick and I went ahead with the now mini BBQ (which was not so fantastic-LOL) and passed on the fireworks…Although I did get a wonderful Wallowa Lake sunset photo. JM
Sunday, July 4, 2010
Today was an extraordinary day! A fun and magnificent 24 mile one-way dirt road Jeep drive (thanks Hal) through Hells Canyon National Recreation Area with its dense forests, spectacular vistas (especially Granny View), seeing the Snake River, and wildflowers galore plus climbing a historic lookout fire tower - and ending the drive with lunch in the 106-year old Imnaha Store and Tavern that greets you with wooden cigar-store Indians. What a day!!!! JM
Leaving Baker City, OR and on our way to Joseph, Oregon and Wallowa Lake where we planned to spend July 1 thru 5 at the Park at the River RV Resort…and to celebrate the 4th of July. Our initial drive into Joseph, past the Wallowa Lake with its Wallowa Mountains as a backdrop was absolutely picturesque…and then on to our camp site.
Arriving at the “resort” we were assigned campsites, and informed we would have to move our rigs to various sites over the next two days and then end up in the overflow area along the Wallowa River for the remaining two nights. Hmmmm…let’s see…it’s really crowded, barking dogs, and screaming kids running all over, and being one rig right next to another was not our idea of a good time. Lois and I walked down to the overflow area, met up with Rick and Hal…and after talking to the owner we were ecstatic when we found out we could actually camp in the overflow area for the entire stay. Wahoo!!!!
This location was quiet, the sound of the clear, rapid running river drowned out all of the noise, and we were virtually isolated in the two sites facing the Wallowa River, mountain, and forest. Perfect!!!
Joseph, OR – You are greeted by a sign that has been on Main Street for over half a century – “This Little Town is Like Heaven to Us. Don’t Drive like Hell Through It” –heaven it is! See Photos
Joseph is an arts community, charming, flowers and bronze sculptures everywhere, museum, distillery, bronze foundry, cowboys, micro-brewery, wildlife everywhere, stunning mountains, beautiful lake, and tons of history highlighted by Chief Joseph and the Nez Perce Indians. Heaven!!!
Friday, the 2nd it was overcast and raining so we did laundry, shopped, and stopped at the gravesite of Chief Joseph. Lois & Hal went to Lostine where the town becomes one giant flea market and surprised me with a wonderful teak tray! Thank you, thank you Lois and Hal!
Then we did just what we seem to do best – hang out at our campsite in “our little piece of heaven!” JM
This morning we left the Clyde Holliday State Park and were on our way to Baker City…however we had to - and I mean had to stop at this hidden gem - The John Day Kam Wah Chung State Heritage Site. The name means “Golden Flower of Opportunity.” The building was constructed in 1866-1867 and served as a center for the Chinese Community in Eastern Oregon who helped build the American West during the gold rush days. It contains artifacts and relics from its various uses; a general store, religious center, and office of the famous doctor of pulsology and herbal medicine Imn “Doc” Hay and the skilled merchant Lung On.
I could go on and on about this place but if you are interested in the history of this building and these two remarkable men, the best thing to do would be to “Google it.” I should mention, the only photos you could take inside the building (with the threat of being removed) were without a flash…and they were serious! See Photos
Traveling on, we headed towards Baker City, OR where we toured the National Historic Oregon Trail Interpretive Center. The movie presentation was extremely informative and the displays were awesome. Before leaving, we checked out some of the original wagon wheel trails. These were some astonishing people walking over 2,000 miles to make new homes for themselves.
Taking a drive to the city we checked out many of the historic structures, however I have to say, for a city that touts itself as being “historic” they have not preserved their history.
Tonight we stayed in a commercial RV park in town preparing for our next day adventures. JM
We left Lake Ochoco County Park now on our way to the town of John Day. We made a planned stop at the captivating and intriguing (to me anyway) Thomas Condon Paleontology Center at the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument. What a place! It covers a 40-million-year record of plant and animal life and to this day is still excavating and finding more treasures to our past!
Across the road is the absolutely charming James Cant Ranch Historic District. The back drop to the ranch is Sheep Rock. After enjoying our lunch under some blooming apple trees on the groomed lawn, we walked around some of the historic buildings and the interior of the house. We ended this excursion with a drive through the fossil bed area. See Photos
Our stop for the night was the Clyde Holiday State Park – how pretty! It was actually like being in a park. There was an Ochoco River walk which we took, and along the way enjoyed the wonderful wild flowers. It also gave us the opportunity to catch up with our families as they had wonderful Internet service…But oh no….mosquitoes! JM
Guest Blogger – Rick
Our plan for today was to spend the morning around Bend “taking care of business.” Hal needed to replace a battery in his coach, Sandy needed a vet to look at a sore on her leg and JoAnne needed her INR test. Success! Hal got his new battery, Sandy's leg was checked and is fine, and JoAnne found a beautiful new clinic in Bend and was able to get the blood work done.
It was then off to Prineville, OR. We should probably mention the amazing scenery we see but it has become so common place that I fear we are starting to take it for granted. What an interesting little town Prineville is. It is nestled in a beautiful valley. As you drop into the town from the surrounding mountains your first sight is a very pretty golf course. Perhaps the most notable site in Prineville is the County Court House. WOW! No box stores in Prineville - this town really is a small town - size, feel and values - old shops along Main Street and a wonderful history museum run by the town historical society.
So, what do I mean about small town feel and values - Hal needed to have the bolts on his hitch tightened and need to get a special socket. Off to the Prineville Napa Store where…to make a long story short…the owner of the store stayed past closing hours, lent Hal his tools and personally helped him fix his hitch - when Hal asked what the charge would be the man told him, "nothing, get out of here and enjoy the rest of your vacation".
Camping that night was in the Crook County Park on Lake Ochoco. RM
Guest Blogger - Rick
Today was a very short drive to Bend, OR. We had not been there before and were in for a real treat. Bend is a beautiful town, and we all agreed, being there was like being back in Boulder, Colorado. Bend has the same kind of environment, and same kind of people (read mountain bikers, runners, etc.). Unfortunately and soooo out of character, JoAnne did not have her camera…however I had my iPhone, took a photo and posted it on Facebook.
We had a delicious lunch on the patio at the 900 Wall St. Restaurant and at the same time did some people watching. I must say I am not entirely sure why we ate at a restaurant. Bend was having "Bite of Bend" - an annual local chef cooking contest so the streets were lined with food vendors displaying and cooking their specialties. We had great fun just walking around the town, taking in the sights and great smells.
After a fun afternoon in Bend we headed to Tumolo State Park - our home for the night.
We walked along the Tumolo River, and then back to camp for a game “Oh Shit” and for the very first time…JoAnne won and actually had Hal sign the score card. Hallelujah! No mosquitoes! RM