Friday, August 13, 2010

Oregon Week #1 & Crater Lake

We left the campground at Winnemucca, NV about 7:00am. What a great find Water Canyon was. The drive to OR was interesting. The Nevada part was mostly more high desert. In Oregon there were two areas frequented by hang gliders. We saw several very remote boondocking sites. These are primarily people living on the fringe of society. A small trailer, a truck, and a free place to live in the middle of nowhere. We finally saw some green trees, grass & water. The first time since we left Colorado.
We got to Lakeview, OR about noon time. Stopped at the State Visitor Center then continued to the Lofton Reservoir campground. Wow!!. Just what we were looking for. Right on the shore of the reservoir plus it's free.
Lots of animals. We saw a doe drinking from the lake, a muskrat swimming, an assortment of birds and were entertained by perhaps a dozen chipmunks. We're staying here for the rest of the weekend.
On Sunday we drove to Klamath Falls to go grocery shopping, dump the tanks, get fresh water and do laundry. We stayed at the Sunset FS campground. Not nearly as nice as the Lofton Reservoir, but OK for a night. On Monday we drove through the Aspen Point, Fish Lake & Doe Point campgrounds hoping for a nice waterfront site. No luck. All of these campgrounds overlook lakes but don't have direct waterfront sites. We continued to the Crater Lake National Park. Went to the visitor center, had a nice lunch in the restaurant then checked in at the Mazama Campground.
On Monday we got up early, had breakfast then drove around the lake. The view was just spectacular.

We stopped at all the view points and walked around.
After Crater Lake we went to the Diamond Lake FS campground. Got lucky and would up with a great lakeside site. Used the scooter and we all took a nice walk. As I type this, it's 6:24pm. There is a bid storm moving through. Lightning, heavy rain and small hail now & then. Poor people in the tents.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Heading to Oregon

On Sunday the 8th, we had a nice breakfast with Suzanne & family then left to continue our trip towards Oregon. We visited with John & Linda at their property near Monument, CO. Gopher votes their "campground" into her Top Ten. All day with no leash.
On Monday we drove to Salida. Spent the night at the free BLM campground just of Hwy 50 east of town. In the morning we went to town intent on stopping by a great bakery. The bakery is closed on Tuesday!! Oh well, saved a bunch of empty calories. Dumped the tanks & filled with water at the City Visitor Center. We stopped at the Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park for a visit. About 4:00 we got to Grand Junction, CO and stayed at the Colorado River State Park. Nothing special but it's convenient to I-70 and a full days drive by our standards.
The initial plan was to visit the Dinosaur National Park at the CO/UT border. Turns out the main Visitor Center is closed for a major renovation, so we decided to head directly to OR; a 1,000 mile drive!!.
The drive through UT was very interesting. The drive from Green River north to the Provo area was especially pretty. Past Salt LLake City we saw the Great Salt Lake, a huge Kennecot copper mining operation and the Bonneville Salt Flats.
Spent the night in a parking lot in West Wendover, NV. West Wendover is the first city into Nevada on I-80. Not much. Basically a collection of casinos, hotels, etc.
On Thursday, we continued west on I-80 to Winnemuca, NV. We stayed in the BLM campground at Water Canyon. A very pleasant campground on a nice cool day. a huge improvement over last nights parking lot. And both were free!!
It's 8:27pm Pacific Time as I type this. The sun just set. The view from our campsite if just beautiful. We're looking at the sparkling lights of the city and the mountains tinted orange from the sun. The other way is a quarter moon and stars. There are no lights in the campground. It's a basic, rustic, disbursed type campground. Find a spot you like and just turn off the ignition. It's been another wonderful day.