A Travellerspoint blog

Exploring the Northwest

Oregon is Beautiful!

Well…it once again seems like this blog entry is way overdue. I was about to apologize again for it having been so long since my past post but I now believe this will most likely be the way it goes in the future. Just seems to always be something going on. We have had quite a few small repair jobs on the motor home over the past several weeks. I guess it is to be expected when you bounce your house down the highway. We needed to repair the microwave oven for a blown fuse after it became unhappy being operated on the inverter as well as several sliding drawers that have flown open while on those curvy mountain roads and broke latches and slide mechanisms.

Enough of the mundane excuses! Let’s get to where we have been and what we have seen since we last talked……

From Atwater we spent a few days in the Sacramento area for our niece’s wedding and to visit family. We had a great time there enjoying homemade Sausage and wine from my uncle YUM!!!! Next we traveled over to the San Rafael area to be with our daughter who had an admissions interview for a graduate program at Dominican University. From our RV parking place we could see the prison complex at San Quentin. I have found that looking at prisons from the outside never ceases to remind me how much I never want to be inside looking out.

This is a picture of San Quentin prison taken from our RV parking spot on the bay in San Rafael.

Next we were off to the Medford Oregon area to explore and see if that might work out as a landing spot. We were amazed at the beauty of the Rogue River. We travelled from its source at Crater Lake all the way to where it empties into the Pacific Ocean at Gold Beach. It was amazingly beautiful. Here are some pics

This was a small gorge where the Rogue River flowed through some waterfalls next to the highway.

Next we went up to Crater Lake where even though it was about 70 degrees outside there was still a good amount of snow on the ground. The lake was formed almost 8000 years ago when Mt Mazama erupted leaving a 6 mile diameter crater where its peak used to be. This may be the most beautiful lake I have ever seen. The water filters out most of the other colors besides blue from the ambient light leaving what looks to be the most spectacular blue looking water I have ever seen.

Here is Susan at the rim of the lake.

Here is a shot of the lake. Amazingly beautiful!

Next we traveled over to the Oregon coast to visit Brookings and Gold Beach. The trip from Medford actually takes you back into Northern California redwoods and on the way back we stopped for a few hours to explore the redwood forest.

This is the old bridge at Gold Beach Oregon. We really enjoyed the coastal cities of the Southern Oregon coast.

We stopped at one beach on the way back to let the dog run on the beach. Funny after living in San Diego his whole life I don’t think we had ever been on the beach before. He learned quickly that drinking sea water was not a good idea.

Here I am on our first stop in the redwoods. We found about a 5 mile drive on a dirt road back through the forest so we took the top off the Jeep and just enjoyed the magnificent redwoods.

Here is Susan standing inside the trunk of one of the fallen redwood trees.

Next we travelled more East to the city of Bend Oregon. Bend had been one of the citied we were really interested in learning more about as a potential retirement location. We found it charming although its recent popularity has caused it to be not quite as affordable as we had hoped.

The Deschutes river flows right through town and the city has done a wonderful job of developing multi use facilities and parks on the river. This picture was taken on a Sunday afternoon from sidewalk restaurants on the river while a concert in the park was going on nearby. NICE!

This is a picture of the Cascade Mountains viewable just West of the city. Beautiful!

Our next stop was McMinnville Oregon to visit the Evergreen Aviation Museum. This is the museum that now houses the Hughes Spruce Goose which I never got a chance to see when it was in Long Beach. The museum was amazing. When you pull up you see two 747 aircraft with the Evergreen logos on them. One parked in the front of the museum complex and another on the roof of one of the buildings. Cool! Here are some of the MANY pictures I took at the museum.

A partial picture of the Spruce Goose with one of the original Spirit of St Louis aircraft to give you some idea of the size of this wooden aircraft. Amazing!

A picture from inside the Spruce Goose looking toward the tail showing the wooden bulkheads.

OK Just a few more selected pictures of the many many aircraft at this amazing aviation museum. If you like aircraft I would highly recommend a visit to McMinnville!

Next we travelled North to Portland where we have stayed for the past week. Portland is a funky little town but we really enjoy that kind of environment. We were driving around last Saturday and stopped at a street festival and Saturday Farmer’s market. It was a visual circus of just about every kind of person, dress and behavior you can imagine. Quite a show.

Here is a picture of one unicorn and a ballerina…… I think

Here is a local favorite called Voodoo Donuts. It has become a cult Must Do for visitors and locals alike. The line to get donuts can stretch for blocks. They have many types of donuts but the original is a voodoo doll shaped donut complete with a pretzel pin stuck in the abdomen and red gooey filling on the inside. YUM!

We took a day trip from Portland over to the coast to see the famous cheese factory at Tillamook Oregon.

Here is a picture of the cheese factory at Tillamook. They receive more than 1.7 million pounds of milk EVERY DAY! This amazing amount of milk produced about 167,000 pounds of cheese per day.

Finally here is a picture of our mascot “Ray” the hedgehog at the Tillamook cheese factory.

Well that about does it for now I think. Next we travel up to the Seattle area where we plan to stay through the 4th of July and then travel on into Canada on our way to Alaska. Not sure when I will get time to do another blog entry but we will keep taking pictures of our adventures and sharing them when we can. Drop us a note anytime we always enjoy hearing from you and learning what you are up to as well.

Take care….
Tom & Susan

Posted by Trainwater 14:31 Archived in USA

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