Our Maiden Voyage

Aug 15 – 24, 2016

This past year has delivered some of the changes that Carol and I have been dreaming of for a long time.

Carol retired in March of 2015 and I followed suit earlier this year. We also put our house on the market in May with the idea that we’d travel and search for the next place for our retired lives. After 8 weeks and no acceptable offers, we decided to rent it and we had a signed lease within a week. Now both the cottage and house are leased until July of 2017 so we are homeless, sort of.

One of our dreams was to buy an Airstream and tour the US and Canadian National Parks and that’s exactly what we are doing. Our Airstream is a 2017 Flying Cloud 25 and I’m pulling it with my 10 yr old Cayenne. You should see the faces of the old timers in their dually pick-ups when I pull in with my German SUV 🙂

It’s been a while, like decades, since I’ve been camping (maybe never for Carol?) but we were surprised how quickly we have enjoyed our new life style. Here’s Carol & TiVo and our new home. Carol calls this ‘glamping’. It’s hard to complain when you wake up to a clean bathroom and a hot cup of coffee. Did I mention that we’re going to do this for the next 11 months?

Carol & TiVo small

Aug 16, 2016

We picked up our travel trailer in Eugene, OR and towed it to a local RV park for a shakedown drive. Nothing special, just a place where we can go through the motions and practice hitching and unhitching.

Fitting everything that we’d like to take along in the Airstream has been a real challenge but we’re finally there – at least for now (Carol already is thinking about remodeling). Yes, those are the TV clickers in the silverware drawer and no, we don’t actually get TV reception since we’re in rural areas. And yes, there’s a Dish satellite in our future 🙂

Aug 17, 2016

Oregon in general is very green, beautiful, full of recreation activities (John: expect some activity dropping) and with low density. Parking was never an issue (image that!) and the roads were incredible maintained.

Sisters, OR is a great small town similar to a CA gold rush town with beautiful pine trees and a bunch of brew pubs (this is Oregon after all). On our drive from Eugene, we crossed the Cascades and the mountains are beautiful. Here’s a shot of the namesake three sisters taken from the side of the road.

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An old barn on the route between Sisters and Bend. Sort of what my femur felt like a few years ago LOL

Barn small

Aug 18-20

We’ve wanted to visit Bend for a long time and were happy to finally arrive.  We booked a site at the posh Crown Villa RV Park and we were not disappointed: parking on pavers, full cable TV, land yachts as sophisticated as the lunar lander and hosts as sweet as they come. Boy, we were set up for future disappointments.

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Bend was really awesome once we got over the shock of seeing so many slackers smoking cigarettes on the downtown corners.  And smoking itself wasn’t disappointing, it was what they were smoking.  Had it been the good stuff, then I’d have a smile for them.  Oh well…

Next we toured some neighborhoods to see what a buck buys and we were pretty happy about what we saw.  We also stopped at Aubrey Glen Golf Club on the west side and the area was really beautiful.  Too bad I didn’t have time to play…

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Aug 21, 2016

After Bend, we drove down to Crater Lake for a couple of days ­ which was spectacular! We have only seen it from the air but up close it’s amazing. Deepest lake in the US and words can’t describe how blue the water is.

Crater Lake Pano

The weather has been really hot during the days (thankfully we have great A/C in the rig) so last Sunday night, we opened a BR window and turned on the ceiling fan. When I got up Mon morning, my weather station showed 39F outside and 41 inside. A bit cold but relief from the daytime heat. So the next night, we left the window open but turned off the fan. Not sure what we were thinking as we were at 6,000 ft near Crater Lake. In the morning, it was 31F out but still 41F in. Yes Carol loves her comforter and TiVo isn’t half bad as a foot warmer 🙂

Aug 23-24, 2016

Traveling four hours west we reached Bullard’s Beach where we escaped the heat and welcomed the coastal fog. Daytime temps were 60’s ­- 70’s with nights in the 50’s. Perfect! Bullard’s Beach is a beautiful campground and we set up camp and then headed into Bandon, just ten minutes south.

Bandon is the quaint little town which has since become famous for the Bandon Dunes golf resort that’s just five min north of our campgrounds.  We went into town for an adult beverage and some calamari but it wasn’t up to the Vasco standard.  And boy, do we miss the crowd at Vasco.

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Then back to Bullard’s and down to the beach by the lighthouse. Got driftwood?

Driftwood

You know how people like to show pics of their kids? We don’t have any but I didn’t want to disappoint. Here’s TiVo, our 5 yr old oversized Yorkie.

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On the next day, we went up to Coos Bay for lunch and ended up in a German restaurant.  Not sure how that happened…

Then back to Bandon to shoot the Haystacks but still too much fog.  But TiVo had fun 🙂

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