On the Oregon Trail I

It is summer so must be time for a family vacation. Time to load everyone up in the roadster and hit the great wide open for Walley World – oh wait that was the movie from the other night. No hot chicks on this trip (at least that I will admit too) and no animals were harmed.

For this summer we spent a week at sunny Sun River, Oregon – near Bend. We rented a house with another family (Hi Bellicitti’s) who had been to Sun River a few times previously. We packed up (including bikes) and headed up on a Sunday afternoon and stopped in Redding for the evening. It was hot in Redding, but it was a dry heat so not too bad. Two things we wanted to do in Redding – see the Sundial Bridge and play in the pool at the hotel. Did the latter first and the kids had a great time. After dinner, and just before sunset, a few of us headed to the bridge. We took a rather circuitous route to get there – we were not lost, just, uhm sightseeing. That is it, we were sightseeing.

Anyway as we neared the bridge you could noticeably feel the temperature drop from the cool water in the river. The sun was setting fast so I shot several shots – a couple I have posted on my Flickr feed. The bridge is pretty cool and the pictures do not do it justice. Also had a really cool sunset because there was a fair amount of smoke in the air because of the forest fires west of Redding.

The next morning we all went back to the bridge so everyone could see it and I could get more pictures with more light. Even though the light was fading the night before, it was better light. But I was still able to get some great shots. After everyone had a chance to see/photo the bridge we took off to Oregon. Six hours later, including a some driving done by Landon, we reached Sun River. We checked in and checked out our home for the rest of the week. This place is sweet!

Next step was figuring out what do while we are here. The options are pretty extensive – bike riding, horse riding, hiking, golf, river rafting, swimming – you get the picture. As you would expect, everyone wanted to do something different but we could agree on a few things – the golf putting in the dark and bike riding.

After getting unpacked and unwinding Monday night we hit the ground running on Tuesday. First order of the day was to hop on our bikes and start exploring Sun River. There is literally miles of paved trails to ride – it is very bike (and walking) friendly. We wanted to do a family float trip on a raft, but none were available until after we were gone. So Bob and Madeline got a canoe and Connor got a kayak and they went for a float/paddle of 6 miles. At the end, there was a Sun River van to ferry them back to the marina and transport their canoe/kayak.

Tuesday night was wrapped up by make the rounds on the putting course. In the dark. With flashing golf balls. And glow sticks on our putters and around the flag at each hole. It was dark and it was and fun.

On Wednesday the big event was the Adventure Course that Bob, Scott, Connor, and I did. It consisted of lots of poles, wires, ladders, and other things to climb on – 15′ to 40′ off the ground. Did I mention that I get nervous climbing a ladder to get on the roof – no? Well let me say the course was a challenge. I have posted some pictures on Flickr from the course and will continue to post more. I am proud to say Connor did every obstacle. I made it through all of them expect the last one. Last one was a climbing wall that swung back and forth. I did not have the upper body strength at the end of the day to make it to the top. All in all I was proud of what I did and very proud of what Connor did.

To top off the day we caught the “running of the horses”. At the end of each day the move the horses from the stable where they stage all of the trail rides to their evening pasture. It was something out of the wild west – 10’s of horses and a few “cowboys” riding herd to move them to the evening quarters – pretty frackin’ cool.

[more coming in part II]

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