Whychus Creek Trail hike

 Sunday (6/17) was our last day in the Sisters area so we wanted to top it off with something simple so we decided to hike a trail that Diane found on the web called the Whychus Creek Trail.

 The trail head was located just a few miles outside of town and from it we walked a well-manicured and gently slopped uphill trail to a viewpoint that overlooked a vast area with just a little peek-a-boo view of a stream below.

 Well that peek-a-book was just enough to draw us in so we found a single track trail and headed down towards the creek.  

 Now if you have read our blog very long at all you probably know that I’m not a big fan of uphill hikes so every time we start “down” a trail my mind always reminds me that “DAMN” we have to come back up this sucker later LOL!!! But to be honest, after losing the 35lbs I don’t complain about it as much, I still complain, just not as much LOL!!

 I’m not sure just how long the trail actually was but at one point after reaching the bottom and almost to the creek we saw a trail marker that showed 1.8 miles back to the rail head so I’m guessing overall we probably hiked 4 miles, not long but still a nice hike in the woods.

 Before the hike we took a driving tour that took us to Black Butte Ranch and Eagle Crest just to have a look so between the drive topped off by the hike our day was pretty much filled.

 Once we called it a day I stowed what gear we set up for our short stay in Sisters including unhooking our water and septic in preparation for an early departure the following morning. We had a 9AM appointment at the freightliner shop in Coburg and that was a 115 mile drive on 2 lane highway and I wanted a little buffer so I wanted to lift our jacks at 6:30.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

That’s it for this update, we enjoyed our stay in the Sisters area once again but I think we both agree that the next time we are in the area we might just hang out longer in Redmond or Bend and just do a day trip or 2 to Sisters.

 We are still behind on the blog by almost 2 weeks but we are sneaking up on catching up LOL!!    

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Another hike day, Clear Lake, Sahalie Falls and Koosah Falls.

 Saturday (6/16) we decided would be a good day to go do a couple hikes that we have done before, we enjoyed them and have reflected back to them many times and it had been about 4 years since we did them last so why not.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In fact we will share a link to the update we did in 2014 in case you care to take a peak and between that update and this one we will once again keep the verbiage to a minimum while playing catchup on the blog. Pictures do a better job of describing the area than I can anyway.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here is the link https://daveanddiane.wordpress.com/2014/10/24/clear-lake-sahalie-falls-koosah-falls-and-suttle-lake/

 I have to laugh, as I read our last update about this area because I also said we were behind on the blog and we would let the pictures do most of the talking. I guess that means we stay pretty darn active in Central Oregon every time we visit, that’s a good thing.

 Anyway, our first stop was Clear Lake. The hike around the lake is 4.6 miles and is really pretty easy, not wheelchair easy or if you have trouble on uneven ground easy but for the average Joe it’s a nice walk.

 Like we mentioned, we have hiked this twice now and we would do it again and probably will. And for you kayakers and fisherman this is a great spot for you as well.

 After our hike around Clear Lake we had a light lunch we packed up and then headed towards Sahalie Falls and Koosah Falls located along the McKenzie River.

 We parked at the Sahalie Falls parking lot and walked the short, maybe 50 yards to the viewing platform of Sahalie first to watch it plunge over a 100ft natural lava dam before moving on.

 Continuing downstream we came to the Koosah falls that drops approximately 70 feet into a deep pool.

 From Koosah Falls we kept going downstream until we reached the Carmon Reservoir Bridge.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is where we sort of messed up by not doing our research and didn’t know that if we had crossed over the bridge and walked to the restrooms we would have found another trail that went back up river on the other side to a bridge that takes you back over the river again so you can walk back downstream to the Sahalie Falls.

 We just walked back the same way we came and then on past the Sahalie Falls until we reached the upper bridge, that’s when we had the OH CRAP moment.

   

 It’s not that we didn’t hike just as far or missed any of the river but I’m sure the other side just offered different vantage points to view it from. Next time we will know better, and I’m sure there will be a next time.

 The loop is about 3 miles and does have its fair share of steps and uneven areas but overall an easy trail to walk and very shaded so a great thing to do on a hot day.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 By the time we finished up at the falls we had a great day of hiking (one that we would highly recommend if you are anywhere close to the area) under our belts and jumped in the truck and headed home.

 We had one more hike in mind while in the area but you will need to come back to check that one out in our next update.   

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More time around Sisters, a little Pickleball and a hike

 Welcome back, glad you stopped back by.

 Well, I think because we are falling behind a bit on the blog and we are being pretty active with a bunch of stuff going on we will keep the verbiage at a minimum in this update and let some pictures do the talking. Let’s face it, the pictures are what you look at most of the time anyway, right?? LOL!!

 On our first full day in Sisters we decided to drive into Bend to watch part of a Pickleball Tournament that was going on.

 We ran into a couple players from Redmond that we met and played with just a week prior and we even ran into a couple guys we recognized from Palm Creek in Arizona so once again we say “it’s a small world”.

 The tournament was held at the Pine Nursery Park where they have 16 nice outdoor courts, a place we would certainly take advantage of if in the area again. Even if we were in the area for a month I think we were told we could do a temporary membership for $25 and take advantage of the organized Round Robin play and clinic’s or pay no fee and still play in open play.

 After spending about 4 hours watching Pickleball we headed back towards Sisters with the intention of stopping at Cline Falls for a short hike.

 We parked in a nice day use area took a short hike to the falls. It was probably less than a mile walk for us but a person could park by the highway and walk much less if they wanted to.

The trail went along the Deschutes River which changed from small calm ponds to small rapids and nice wetlands that created a picturesque setting.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Once we reached the falls we chilled for a while taking in the views and sounds before heading back to the truck and heading home for the evening with plans for some extensive hiking the following day. That will be in our next update.

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Travel day to Sisters Oregon

 Thursday (6/14) brought along with it another long travel day, yup, we were going all the way to Sisters Oregon, a whole 22 miles away. Ahhh, it feels good to be on our normal sized travel days LOL!!!

 Actually this was a little shorter than normal travel day so we had to kill a little time in Redmond before heading to Sisters so we walked over to a small RV show at the fairgrounds next to our campground.

We stopped in at a RV Show at the fairgrounds. When I opened one of the cupboard doors it just fell apart in my hands. The crazy thing was only held together with 6 staples. How do they expect it to hold together when full of canned goods going down the road. Good grief.

We stopped in at a RV Show at the fairgrounds. When I opened one of the cupboard doors it just fell apart in my hands. The crazy thing was only held together with 6 staples. How do they expect it to hold together when full of canned goods going down the road. Good grief.

 After killing as much time as we possibly could we headed to our next spot at the “Bend / Sisters Gardens) RV Park. When we made reservations we were told they only had 1 site available and only for 3 nights which would have us leaving on Sunday and we had an appointment at the Freightliner shop on Monday morning and reservations at a RV park in Coburg starting Monday night so we figured we would be looking for an overnight spot between checking out at Sisters and our appointment at Freightliner, no real big deal.

Sitting in the staging area at Bend Sisters RV Park waiting for our site.

Sitting in the staging area at Bend Sisters RV Park waiting for our site.

 But, while we were checking in we asked one more time if they by chance had Sunday night available to which the answer was yes, cool. That created an option for us because the Freightliner shop was a little over 2 hours away and our appointment was at 9am. So we had to decide whether to still leave on Sunday and finding a spot to dry camp for a night closer to Freightliner or to spend Sunday night in Sisters and get up extra early and hit the road about 6:30 in the morning. Well we decided that if we saw our neighbors out and about we would apologize in advance for waking them up on Monday and decided to spend the extra night.

 Once our decision was maid we paid up and headed to our site. Even though this RV Park is among some of the greenest and well-manicured and prettiest we have stayed at not all of the sites are overly big rig friendly, and we got one of the sites that was pretty tight.

Even if we took the bike rack off we couldn't go back any farther because of the tree.

Even if we took the bike rack off we couldn’t go back any farther because of the tree.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We got out the ol shoehorn and squeezed in the best we could and if we parked the truck just a couple inches away from the motorhome we just barely stuck out into the road. So if you are in the area and decide to stay here and have a big rig try to avoid site #90.

The site is slightly sloped front to back so while parking the truck we had to be extra careful and take into account for a slight roll back. A little to tight for my liking but doable.

The site is slightly sloped front to back so while parking the truck we had to be extra careful and take into account for a slight roll back. A little to tight for my liking but doable.

 The people that were in our site just before us had a late checkout so we were not able to get into our site until after 1pm so we ended up making a little lunch in the staging area in the parking lot while we waited for the site to open. Times like this is exactly why it’s important to find a floorplan that you can move around in with the slides in whether it’s a motorhome or 5th wheel.

The inside of our coach with all of the slides in on travel day. Diane cutting up a apple & cheese for our lunch. That's a pretty normal lunch for us anyway.

The inside of our coach with all of the slides in on travel day. Diane cutting up a apple & cheese for our lunch. That’s a pretty normal lunch for us anyway.

 After getting all set up and chillin for a while we decided to drive into Sisters for a walking tour and to have an early dinner before calling it a day.

The view from the front of our site

The view from the front of our site

 We will call it good for this update because the next one will be about a few hikes we took while in the area and I’m sure they will be chocked full of pictures.

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A visit to Redmond Oregon

  Wednesday (6/6) after our “See ya down the road” to Bob & Karen we traveled 50 miles to our nest destination at the Expo Center RV Park in Redmond, right next to the fairgrounds.

 We had driven through Redmond a few times in our lives but never stopped to explore the area so we decided this would be a great time to do just that.

 Redmond is located in the high desert in Deschutes County and was incorporated in 1910 and has a population of 27,000. It has been growing at a rate of between 8 and 11% per year depending on what report you read so it’s just the right size town for us. And it has plenty of things to do recreation wise like mountain biking, fishing, hiking, rock climbing, white-water rafting, skiing, golf, OH and Pickleball is pretty big.

 In fact as far as Pickleball goes they have 8 very nice outdoor courts and we found ourselves playing at them at least 4 of the 7 days we were in the area. And even though it does not reflect it in the pictures there was one morning that 7 of the 8 courts were full and we were told it gets much busier most of the time. They have a few indoor courts as well to fill in those colder winter months.

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Diane is on the left court in the blue top.

Diane is on the left court in the blue top.

I'm on the left court on the other side of the net on the left.

I’m on the left court on the other side of the net on the left.

 During our driving around we couldn’t help notice all of the parks, it turns out they have more than 25 parks throughout the community. And we couldn’t help notice how nice and clean almost every neighborhood was, even the obviously older ones were not that bad.

  Redmond is also home to Central Oregon’s only commercial airport so that’s a big plus for some people.

While checking out the area we drove out to Crooked River Ranch which is less than 20 miles outside of Redmond to have a look.

Crooked River Ranch covers 10,000 acres of rural residential, recreational and commercial property and has a great golf course and Pro shop, swimming pool, Baseball field, basketball court and of course Pickleball courts.

Golf Course at Crooked River Ranch

Golf Course at Crooked River Ranch

 As well as a couple small places to eat and a couple shops mixed in as well as a small convenience store with gas that has just enough to get you buy without a run to town.

 There are a couple RV parks to, one actually on the property and one just outside the boundaries. The one on Crooked River looked like it would work just fine for a week or two if in the area and wanted to be out and away from town.

Pickleball courts at Crooked River Ranch

Pickleball courts at Crooked River Ranch

 Property prices on the ranch are not too bad and a number of the lots will allow RV type setups which will be exactly what we will be looking for at some time in the future so we will be keeping it in mind even though I don’t think it will be a spot we will be hunkering down.

 We also took a drive to Prineville and a small community called Tumalo to have a look. Once again we have driven through these towns a number of times on motorcycle rides but other than maybe stopping for a meal we never really explored them. One thing is for sure, they have both grown over the years.

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 While in Prineville we took a drive to the Prineville Reservoir, unfortunately it was a rainy day so it wasn’t overly attractive.

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A shot from "the toy" of the campground at the Prineville Reservoir.

A shot from “the toy” of the campground at the Prineville Reservoir.

 On Tuesday (6/12) we loaded my bike up and drove into Bend to drop it off at “Let it Ride” to have the new tire installed we talked about in one of our last updates and then went for a walk around downtown and along the river.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We used to love going to Bend many years ago when it was much smaller but it has grown so much and the traffic has gotten so bad and prices have jumped so much that it has lost a lot of its attractiveness to us BUT times like this while walking around just enjoying the sights we can’t help falling back in love with it just a little bit.

 We also visited Smith Rock State Park during our stay to do a little hiking.

 Smith Rock is very well known for rock climbing and even on visits midweek we like to do you can almost always see people hanging off the mountainsides. I guess there are more than 1 thousand already bolted routes in the park as well as all the other possible climbing routs. Now none of that matters to us because there is no way you will ever catch us doing that stuff but for those that do it’s well worth a visit if in the area. We just like to watch.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For us it’s the hiking that draws us to Smith Rock, there are miles and miles of hiking trails with varying degrees of difficulty.

See that person crossing on that cable!!??

See that person crossing on that cable!!??

 It was pretty warm on the day we chose to hike and there wasn’t much of a breeze down in the canyon at times so we got pretty warm but enjoyed it fully none the less.

This was a beginners area. Notice the backboard located on the right side of the picture.

This was a beginners area. Notice the backboard located on the right side of the picture.

Can you see the climber?

Can you see the climber?

See the person on the rock wall?

See the person on the rock wall?

 During our hike we came across some Wood Ducks and couldn’t help notice just how many babies were following behind momma, 26 in fact. That number got us wondering just how many darn eggs a Wood Duck would lay.

 With a quick search we found that a mature hen commonly lays 12 to 14 eggs but it is very common for more than one hen to lay eggs in the same nest which would create larger clutches like this one. This is called “dump nests”.  I wonder if this is a common thing among other critters as well. (Sorry for the picture, the phone takes pretty god pictures but not when I need to zoom in a bunch like I tried to do here).

 And we visited the Redmond Caves that were only about a mile from our campground.

 There are 5 caves formed by volcanic flows of molten lava from the Newberry Caldera. From what we read Native Americans used the caves over the last 6,000 years. I guess all of these caves used to be just one but at some point it collapsed and created 5 separate caves.

 

 I think we only went out to eat once during our stay and that was mid-afternoon at the #1 rated spot in town according to Trip Advisor and that was at Diego’s Spirit Kitchen. The food was good but I only had a salad and Diane had something like Enchilada’s, I had an iced tea and Diane had a beer and our bill came to $47. Dang, we have been spending WAY too much eating out this month LOL!!

During one of our evening bike rides we happened across a small Barrel Racing event going on. It was fun to watch for a while.

During one of our evening bike rides we happened across a small Barrel Racing event going on. It was fun to watch for a while.

 If you were to dig back into our updates I’m sure you would come across something stating that Diane has always said when it came time to get off the road that Central Oregon would be the place she would want to be. And to that I always said that Central Oregon gets too much snow and gets too cold in the winter for me. But after this visit and spending more time here I think I might be starting to agree with her.

I have been looking for these Cotton Candy grapes for over 2 years all across the country and I found them at a roadside fruit stand. Go figure.

I have been looking for these Cotton Candy grapes for over 2 years all across the country and I found them at a roadside fruit stand. Go figure.

 

 

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There is just so much to do in the area and places like Redmond being only a 15 minute drive from Bend makes it very appealing, even though Redmond really has everything you need. But if you want a Costco, Trader Joes or other bigger things like a mall Bend is the place. AND Bend has a park with 18 Pickleball courts and is in the middle of building a 48,000 sqft indoor sports complex that will have 8 indoor courts setup like some racket ball clubs with viewing platforms.

We stopped in at a RV Show at the fairgrounds. When I opened one of the cupboard doors it just fell apart in my hands. The crazy thing was only held together with 6 staples. How do they expect it to hold together when full of canned goods going down the road. Good grief.

We stopped in at a RV Show at the fairgrounds. When I opened one of the cupboard doors it just fell apart in my hands. The crazy thing was only held together with 6 staples. How do they expect it to hold together when full of canned goods going down the road. Good grief.

 And how can you not love the panoramic views of Mt. Bachelor, The Sisters, Mt. Jefferson and Mt. Hood that you get from just about any place in the area.

 I don’t know but Central Oregon in the summers and Arizona in the winters does not sound like a bad combination to us. Time will tell.     

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Finishing up our stay in La Pine

 Tuesday (6/5) was going to be our last day mooch docking at Bob & Karen’s and we had a few things planned for the day.

 After breakfast we loaded our bikes on the truck and Bob & Karen loaded theirs on their Jeep and we headed to Bend to have our free annual checkup done at the “Let it Ride” Pedego shop where we all bought our bikes.

 When you buy a bike at “Let it Ride” they offer a once a year checkup as long as you own the bike and will make any adjustments needed and of course it’s a good time to have anything fixed. Diane needed a new bell on her bike and I needed a new rear tire and a new cable cover for my shifter cable.

 When we bought our bikes the first thing we did was change out the tires to a more aggressive trail tire and unfortunately they did not stock tires like that so I needed to have them order one in and bring it back which wasn’t really a big deal due to the fact we were going to only be 20 miles away at our next stop after leaving Bob & Karen’s.

 I know, it’s just a bike tire so why not just change it myself. Well I certainly can do that but a Pedego rear wheel setup is a bit different than a normal bike because of the motor system and is a bit of a burger to deal with so if I don’t have to mess with it I won’t.

 We got to the shop at 10AM right when they opened and were told it would take about 3 hours for all of the bikes to be serviced so we decided to find someplace to take a walk along the river and have a little lunch.

 We ended up at a nice table outside at “Greg’s Grill on the Deschutes” which was a great setting on a nice warm sunny day.

 While having lunch we got a call from the bike shop informing us that they were done and ready to be picked up. GREAT, they were done faster than we thought and we had plenty of time to get them and still get in a good ride!!

 After picking up the bikes we headed to Lava Lands between Bend and La Pine where we unloaded the bikes and hit the trails.

 We have ridden this area few times and have enjoyed it each and every time. There is a paved bike path that connects the Lava Lands Visitor Center with Sun River Resort which is probably about a 4 mile ride and in the middle of that ride is a turnoff you can take that is about a 3 mile ride to the Benham Falls day use area along the Deschutes River.

 Of course once you reach either of those areas there are miles of trails you can venture out on, and we have in the past but this time we were a bit limited on time because Bob & Karen left Buddy (their dog) home and we needed to get back for him.

 So, keeping Buddy in mind we opted to just ride into Sun River, of course a ride into Sun River is not complete without a stop at Goodies Ice-Cream! Bob & I opted to not have ice-cream to help maintain our figures but that didn’t seem to stop the girls LOL!!

 After Diane & Karen finished their ice-creams we rode back to the rigs, loaded up and headed back home where after dinner we finished up the day with another rip roaring game of Chicken Foot.

 Wednesday (6/6) rolled around and it was time to lift our jacks, say our see ya down the roads to Bob & Karen and roll out. It was another very enjoyable visit with great friends, something we will look forward to again in the future. But I’m sure we will run into them again on the road before we are back in this area, we hope so anyway.    

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A great day for a bike ride around Diamond Lake

 Monday (6/4) after breakfast and letting the morning temperatures warm up a bit we all jumped on Bob & Karen’s ATV’s and took a ride around their sub-division and then out into the pucker bushes on the fire escape trail.

Bob & Karen

Bob & Karen

 Now that Bob & Karen have property again after full-timing they are gathering up all the fun toys and have room to store them.

After we rode just a short time Karen & Diane took over the controls and us guys were passengers the rest of the ride.

After we rode just a short time Karen & Diane took over the controls and us guys were passengers the rest of the ride.

 After our ride we decided to strap the bikes on and head towards Diamond Lake for a late lunch and a ride around the lake.

 The drive was a little farther than I was thinking (70 miles one way) but well worth it. We had a nice lunch at the Diamond Lake Resort Café followed by a ride around the lake that provided some great scenery.

 There is a paved 12 mile USFS bike path around the lake and even though it’s not all that long it took us a while to get around it due to all of the stops we took to take in the views.

Diane & Karen

Diane & Karen

Hmm, after loosing the weight I have I see my shorts are starting to look more like skirts. Might be time for some new cloths LOL!!

Hmm, after loosing the weight I have I see my shorts are starting to look more like skirts. Might be time for some new cloths LOL!!

 After our ride we loaded up and headed towards home with a stop at the Diamond Lake Viewpoint along the way.

 Another great day with great friends surrounded by great country. Life is, well, great LOL!!

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