Sunday, July 17, 2016


Destination: Eugene, OR
After several weeks of hectic travel, we were due for a long stay. We parked in Eugene for a month, then moved on to Redmond (near Bend) for another week long stay. 

Oregon is probably the state that we had highest expectations for. It's always stood out as a kind of dream place to live due to the climate and culture. 
It also has beautiful coast lines, forests, mountains, and is certainly more progressive than a lot of the states we've been to so far. 

The city of Eugene has banned the use of plastic grocery bags, and has a large recycling dumpster right next to every single garbage dumpster. Which came as a relief to this compulsive recycler since almost none of the RV parks we've been to offer that service. Best of all you don't have to pump your own gas here!! I found it strange to have a gas pump attended at first but quickly remembered I've always had a strong dislike for pumping gas, especially in the winter. 

Newport, OR

We took a day trip to Newport, on the coast of Oregon. What a gorgeous town! We walked along the beach for a few miles, then headed downtown for some pizza and beer and Rogue Brewery. We also stopped to watch a few of the local sea lions that hang out near the dock. They bark and bark and bark. Crab, jelly fish, and huge starfish could also be seen from the dock.

James' handmade cigar box guitar. Inlayed copper fret markers, inlayed cork, hand carved bridge, handmade stains, and a dog bowl resonator.
James spent his time making new friends, working on his 2nd handmade cigar box guitar, doing a few haircuts, and even giving a guitar lesson to our neighbor.  Needless to say, this was another location that I had to drag him away from.. The residents of the park even called after we left to say they missed him.
Portland Rose Garden
We took another day trip to Portland. They have a great (free) park on the outskirts of the city. 
We stopped in the rose garden and got a bunch of nice photos. We happened to be there 4th of July weekend, though, and the place was completely swamped. 

The downtown was not very impressive. I had always built Portland up in my mind as the best city evarr but turns out it looks like most other large cities with tall buildings, tons of homeless people, etc. One afternoon is admittedly not long enough to get an accurate feel for a place, but that's what I took away from it.

Mt. Washington in central Oregon
The view from Tupelo Falls, and a mysterious dead forest  
James at work building guitars in our RV park.
On our drive over the mountains to Bend we passed through an eerie dead forest, I'm guessing because of the drought the east side of the state is experiencing.

I knew the east side of the state gets less rain than the west side, but I did not expect it to be a complete desert like it is!

Bend turned out to be a beautiful town, with great parks and restaurants. We also drove in through Sisters, which is 20 minutes outside of Bend. It is a very cute little tourist town, which would have been a nice place to visit if we had had the time!

This week we stocked up on groceries and got 4 new (badly needed) tires and an oil change for the car as we prepare to tackle the trip back to the eastern side of the US. We are probably collecting a few more things that we should be, such as tools, books, etc. But still not feeling too confined in our small space. The dogs probably miss running since we haven't had any fenced-in dog runs at our recent RV parks. The desert is not a friendly place for dogs. A lot of prickly things for them to step on in the brush, sharp rocks, and grass seeds which cause sneezing fits.  Not to mention rattle snakes! It's very nice for them to have a nice grassy yard.


RV Art of the Week(in true Pacific Northwest fashion):