Monday, June 28, 2004


Why not begin at the beginning, eh?

We left Salt Lake at 8:45am on Wednesday the 16th and drove all the way to Bend, Oregon. That's about 690 miles, thank you very much. We camped out at Cinder Hill campground at East Lake in the Newberry (or is it Newbury?) mountains south of Bend. I like to think of the first campground as Ducky Camp, or Site with a tree shaped like a butt. I think Jay had something more reverential in mind. But anyway. The lakes are smaller versions of Crater Lake -- formed by a volcano that collapsed in on itself. But in the Newburys they formed 2 lakes because of a giant obsidian flow. Pretty cool. Anyway, we did some hiking, and then cruised through the High Desert Museum to learn all about raptors, porcupines, and otters.

I wasn't feeling too great because of allergies (and because we left the coffee in the freezer at home...) so we drive back into Bend to hit the Wild Oats grocery store for coffee (hot and ready), coffee (ground for French press), fruit, wine, beer, and toothpicks (the teatree oil kind).

Second night we spent in the Cascades near South Sister at the Elk Lake campground. (Creative namers, eh? The Three Sisters mountains are North Sister, Middle Sister, and South Sister.) I seem to recall that dinner was pasta with red sauce and a nice Merlot. We camp out in style. Yeah, baby. Campsite: Camp Cleanest Pit Toilet in the World. Seriously.

In the morning we woke up earlier than we planned (Jay misread the clock as 6:15 instead of 5:15) and didn't realize the goof until we checked the time at the South Sister trailhead and saw that it was only 7:25. Not being a morning person, I figured that we must have eaten our oatmeal faster than I imagined possible. Only after he finished his hike did Jay clue me in... Anyway, since I am not a crazy person (at least not in this way), I spent the day reading near the lake, while Jay trudged through slushy snow to the summit of South Sister.

Because he'd spent roughly six or seven hours hiking, he actually let me drive for the rest of the day and we made the coast in time to find a campground and set up before dark. I dub this site "Camp Circus Monkeys" after the large youth group who occupied most of the other sites in the loop.

We didn't waste much time packing up in the morning, though both of us had been so tired the night before that we left the back of the Subaru wide open all night long... Anyway. We headed south down the Oregon coast, stopping at a few view points, and taking a nice detour out to Cape Arago to play on the beach and ogle the sea lions through my cheap binoculars. Highly entertaining. If Jay posts the pictures, I'll link to them later.

We picked up some fresh and tasty bay scallops and halibut from a local market and had a seafood marinara with Alaskan Amber ale. Yum-meee. That was at the campground at the base of Humbug Mountain, which is a cool name in and of itself. However, I think this would also have to be "Camp where we saw a couple doggies whose owners do not walk them enough". These two dogs were practically quivering every time Jay and I threw the frisbee around in the central field, and their owners were clearly not capable of more than a plodding walk. And I'm not saying that being slow is an issue... UNLESS you have energetic dogs. Then being slow and unable to run your doggy is just cruel. Cruel, I tell you.

Okay, enough for now. I'll come back with more later.

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