It begins with an RV

I've been thinking about starting about a blog for a long time. Not that I need another hobby, nor do I have this great desire to push my rants and musings out into cyberspace. But I do like the idea of having a convenient way to share photos and journals with friends and family. So, having just returned from an 800-mile RV adventure throughout Oregon, I thought this might be a good time to start and share some photos of our trip. Let me know what you think of the format!

Yes, we rented an RV for our summer vacation this year. A 34-foot Georgetown motor home, to be specific. Me, Rob, Brent, Dan, Betty. We hooked up the Jeep and headed south. Look out!

Brent did all of the driving to begin with -- with Betty's help.

First stop, Honeyman State Park and the Oregon Dunes. I hadn't seen the dunes since I was a kid, so it was pretty fun to see them again.

Now you can't go to Florence without taking the 10-year old kid to the stanky sea lion caves. We came, we saw. Dan and I learned that several breeds of seals are actually much larger than sea lions. Who knew?

Hard to believe that last year at this time we were in Florence... ITALY.

Oh, anyway, back to reality. A ride on our bikes, a walk on the beach, and movie night in the RV -- we watched The Long Long Trailer.

In the morning we headed south to Ashland. I got up enough courage to drive part of the way, and managed not to kill anyone during my stint at the wheel. Upon our arrival in Ashland on Wednesday night, Sulyn, who met us there from L.A., took us out to a lovely dinner at Beasey's overlooking Lithia Creek. Then Reid and Dustin arrived in town and we had decadent desserts and drinks at Chateau Lin, where some drunk lady stumbled out of her birthday festivities crying, "Au revoir!"

Thursday morning, Dan, Rob and I took Taylor to see the Oregon Vortex, a crazy 100-foot circle in the middle of the woods where people grow 10% smaller as they walk south; where golf balls roll uphill, brooms stand on end, and Rob stands diagonally.

Thursday Rob and I caught a matinee of King John, one of four plays in the Shakespearean canon that I hadn't yet seen. Then that night we all went to Cyrano de Bergerac on the outdoor stage. Always fun going back to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, where Sulyn and I used to spend our summers teaching Shakespeare camp for high school juniors.

(OSF photo)

By Friday morning it was time to head to our next stop: Diamond Lake. We had heard that the lake was being drained in preparation for a major restoration project -- over 60 million chubs have outcompeted the native trout in the lake and needed to be killed. So for now, the lake was down about 6 feet from the norm, and the lake was scheduled to be poisoned the week after.

The main reason for staying at Diamond Lake was to be able to spend the next day because of its proximity Crater Lake. This was my third time to the national park, and the lake never ceases to amaze me with its epic scale and remarkable beauty. As Taylor told us in his report, Crater Lake was formed after the collapse of an ancient volcano, Mount Mazama, 7700 years ago. The basin or caldera was formed after the top 5000 feet of the volcano collapsed. Subsequent lava flows sealed the bottom, allowing the caldera to fill with approximately 4.6 trillion gallons of water from rainfall and snow melt, to create the deepest lake in the country (and 7th deepest in the world) at 1,932 feet.

(National Parks photo)

On our way back to "camp" we stopped along the Rogue River and put our feet into the icy waters.

Day 7 found us travelling north to Camp Sherman, at the head of the Metolious River just outside of Sisters. By now I'm driving our home down the street without any fear at all. We arrived at Camp Sherman in time for a Labor Day pot luck BBQ with other trailerites -- I told Rob it's like a family reunion without the family. Later that evening Rob and I enjoyed a game of bocce with Taylor.

On our last day we relaxed along the side of the river, but Betty became so impatient with us for not throwing sticks for her to fetch that she decided to dive for rocks from the riverbed.

And by the next day we were back home (despite a small malfunction with our tail-lights)... and that's our trip in a nutshell. Our overall verdict is that RV camping is much easier and more convenient than tent camping, and driving it was easier than expected. So we'd do again. But a few more trips to Europe first!

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