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Sunday, July 3, 2016

Oakridge, OR to Last Chance, ID

Ok, so I need to catch up here....

This is a recap and updated to apx 7/1/2016, just before July 4th...
 (it's actually 6/27 Tuesday in writing this, but no internet connections to upload photos and blog.  Yes, I'm finding the routine on this blogging process, upload photos first and then upload the blog, transfer selected pics to the blog for your viewing, both of you, pleasure heheh)

Went from the Willamette SxS Rally

to Paulina Crater just up in the Hills from La Pine, OR.  Cinder Hill Campground, nice, not too many big places to park it and hard to get level.  Nothing right on the lake so views are limited.

Drove from Paulina Crater, light snow dusting last night,  through Central Oregon, which was a very nice drive through the canyons.  Recommend it if you have time...

Since I was running late, got lucky and was able to get into MaryHill SP, WA which is a nice one.

I've been here several times and learned to not take the front Columbia River sites if it's going to be windy at all.  They have the Maryhill Winery, heheh, yep, been there several times too, right up the hill along with the Hedgestone thing..  Park was showing as "FULL" but checked anyway and Ranger just had a move so I got lucky.

From there, made my way to Camano Island SP, WA to meet with some old Dive/Campout buddies, Barb & Wayne, and Rich & child (new dog, lab.  He's got his hands full with that one)  I didn't want to hit Seattle, WA and all that traffic, so went up to Hwy 2, Leavenworth and over into Everett, WA and up.

 One thing I keep forgetting on "Full Timing" is the days of the week and holidays. To me, it's just another day.  I came down Hwy 2 and it was a steady stream of traffic both ways.. more going out, but a lot going towards I-5.

Got to Camano Island SP and it was pretty much 33 1/3 (tent) full.  It's a nice place and if you happen to get one with the view, only about 3-4 sites if that, it's really nice. After driving around the various loops to find a site that was reasonably level, settle on one and made camp.

Saturday, just sat around the fire and renewed old diving trip times.  It was  good to see them all again.  I made some simple BBQ Zuchinni, camfire and all was good throughout the land.

From there to Whidbey Island, Penn Cove, to meet up with fellow "Camp Inn Tear Drop" campers.  They have a place they rotate from there to the Southern Calif and the place is very nice.

Good to see Michael and Susan again and Michael needs to find a new hobby, since they let the boat go....  Soaring, Michael, Soaring Gliders...  "Make it So" You'd be a natural at it, with your full time sailing experience.

I had some check outs at the VA in Seattle while "The Fox" was being upgraded with more solar and batteries and some minor fixes.  I now have 3 160w solar panels on top, 480w total, and 6 - 6vt batteries in pairs, so 3 sets of 3 pairs all hooked up together and ability to move, sigh, one-by-one off the truck onto the ground and hook up,  if I off load the camper.  A bit of a chore, but not going to happen that often.

(Another black box on the other side.  Inside is the "Quick Connect" to allow for offloading and hooking back up without being an Electrical Engineer)

The new batteries sit between the flat bed head board and the camper with quick connections on each battery and the cable to the camper.  Hopefully it'll all work out ok.

I also had "Le Droppe's" (Camp Inn Tear Drop) decals put on the Fox for old times sake and to remind me of the old days.  While most will look, put there hand over their forehead and turn away shaking their head, heheh, "C'est la Vive" (This/such is life" or something like that).  A few get a smile and chuckle on their face and a thumbs up, don't really matter, I like'em and haven't be kicked out of park yet.

Once I got everything "Done" in Seattle, I "done Boogies outta there" towards the PNW SxS Off Road Racing, sigh, but as a looky-loo, not a participant, talk about 'Money Pits"... heheh..

I stopped overnight at Beverly Sand Dunes, Beverly, WA for a cheap, no cost overnight.  Windy, but luckily all the dust has already been blown away.  Only one other camper there to ride the dunes.

I didn't off load as it's too much effort to unload/ride/onload and I didn't get there tll about 7pm.  Planning leaving in the morning so not worth it.  I"m not a "Dunner" (Sand Dune Rider) as much as a "Trailer" (Trail Rider).

While I like the dunes and will ride for Beer, but has to be fairly fresh as "Li'l Nel" can't take the "Whoops" (giant washboarding, 1-2-3' high washboarding  bumps) and the grooves from the big boy's toys... Li'l Nel's wheelbase is smaller and lower 'ground clearance, Clarence' (Movie Airplane, I just like saying it.) so the riding is rough, it' knock your teeth out.  Big boys can just speed over the tops.  I can too, until I hit the one that's out of synch and hit it about 3/4th of the way instead of the top.  Ouch... and possible breaking stuff which I can't afford to do.. so I'll ride dunes only if the sand is fresh.s

Onward to PNW Off Road Racing in Eddieville, WA (just in between  Goldendale,WA and the Columbia River).  Of course, got lost, wrong turn and with my "Nemesis" Garmin Nav?, sigh, a love/hate relationship, down a dirt/gravel road after setting, thanks Jason, to  "Avoid dirt roads"... or whatever it is on the settings,

Spent the weekend there, race was nice, hot, I was really there to see fellow racers and had fun.

Headed out on Monday to slowly make my way to Mackay, ID for the Lost Pines Rally, but it's not until 8th? so taking it slowly and checking out campsites along the way, which brings me Shelton County Park/Wayside, OR.

(Heheh, hopefully I'll get out BEFORE that tree falls)
Of course, no WiFi, Cell coverage which I hate nor DISH, heheh, which I really HATE!!.. heheh, and Yes, I'm a TV-holic & News Junkie... more for background noise than content quality, obviously lacking on the news front these days.

But it enabled me to watch the latest Star Wars DVD which I've been carrying around for the last month.

Not impressed, reminded me of the SW one with the Wookies, cutesy,  and the characters seemed to be  just reading the lines, mixed  the the "Hunger Games" generation...   I plan on watching it again, to night to try to follow it all, parts just didn't make sense and the situations didn't make sense either... as in, ..."ok, just leave or ???" a dangerous situation,  I dunno, I will try it again, but on a 1-10 scale, i'll give it a "5"... good, but sort of a "Yawh" and as fellow diver, John R, said, a remake... Hopefully the next ones will be better as in the orginal series.  And hopefully, just not a reversal from the old one, where the Light Side  was converted to the Dark Side and in this series the Dark Side is converted to the Light side... We'll see, looking forward to the Star Trek one coming out soon, and Independence Day... on Blu Ray of course...

(Having said all that, is this a Death Star Whammy?)

So, right now, as I'm typing this, I'm at Shelton and planning on meeting up for a day with old Neighborhood pals, Bill  and Ted L and friends..  (see Red Rock Canyon, CA) then not sure where I'll land but heading towards Mackay, ID for the Rally.  (Updated:  As it turned out, they broke an axle so couldn't make it, will catch up to them next time.)

This is my "Mapping Control Center" (MCC) and between several maps, remember no internet connection, and a beer or two to build up courage to take the "Off Beaten Roads", I, with yellow/orange/purple highlighter in hand,  mark them with careless abandonment.  "Turn here, oh, what's the skinny little road line, that looks interesting, swoosh goes the highliner marker... and that's the route.   Now the hardest part???  Trying to get my constant "Nemis", Garmin Nav, to accept it and actually go the particular route and not end up on some dirt road in Mexico...

I've been trying to use my USA map as sort of a log of trips/routes taken with dates.  I try to go a route that I haven't been on before.  Obviously I'll duplicate portions of the routes, but hopefully there are other "roads that lead to Rome" and will take them accordingly.  While they might be longer or a little more or a lot, out of the way, just need to do'em... so marking the various routes as I go. Sort of a history log book I can give to.... heheheh, well, I can take with me for the next life's trips...  and Next Life's book is filling up fast...

This should bring me up-to-date, as of today, whenever that is... heheh,  pre-4th of July but uploaded when I get the next internet connections.  Just waiting for Bil & Ted et. al. to arrive today, Wed, and then on the road tomorrow off the beaten paths to Mackay, ID.  I did see a train ride along the way, so might just take that.  One of those "Old Timers", I like trains... the old ones...
(didn't catch the train, only on weekends, next time)

Till the next one. and for all you "Mudder's" out there,
This "Mudder" is for you...
(MudSlides from scratch)


Willamette SxS Rally my pics
Paulina Crater - Cinder Cone Camp site
Maryhill SP, WA
Camano Island SP, WA
Beverly Sand Dunes, Beverly, WA