Our Alaska journey is over.  It was a great experience but was somewhat hampered due to the rain. It was not a great year to visit Alaska.  Although we had many days of perfect weather, it was fortunate that we did not make reservations as we often had to sit through overcast and wet weather before catching the sun to watch the full beauty of Alaska unfold.  Unfortunately, the foul weather seemed to follow us back to the lower 48.
     After crossing back into the USA we made a beeline to Tacoma, Washington to see Donna, Nancy's sister.  Since Lorri, another of Nancy's sisters, was also visiting, Nancy decided to stay with her family while I traveled to Eugene, Oregon for some post-Alaska work on the rig.
Alexx, Donna, Justin, Heidi & Lorri
Lorri, Nancy & Donna
     Since we drove the Canada and Alaska roads at a moderate pace, the rig came back with only the need for a front end alignment.  However, I wanted to take care of a couple of other items.  So while Nancy was having a blast with her sisters, I was camping in the parking lot of an RV repair shop.  My most fun thing was shattering a tooth while eating my granola and yogurt breakfast.  So my distraction from sitting in an RV repair shop was sitting in a dentist chair to get a tooth crowned.
Umpqua River Lighthouse.
Winchester Bay, OR
Cape Arago Lighthouse.
Coos Bay, OR
     After a weeks absence, the Moose returned and we were off to the "Crabbing and Clamming Boomerang" at Winchester Bay on the Oregon coast.  (The "Boomers" are a sub-group of the Escapees RV Club and they call their gatherings "Boomerangs.")
The morning mist rises over Winchester Bay, OR.
Kayaking Winchester Bay, OR.
     The event was a blast.  Of course, we arrived in the rain, but then had several days of great weather.  We made several new friends and our site was graced with all the gatherings and happy hours.  So we had approximately 40 people in our site everyday-what fun!  Not only did we take time to tour the area, but we purchased a 3 day crabbing license and went after those tasty crustaceans. Nancy got 1 and I got skunked.  So it was Nancy 1 and me 0.  However, later in the week I landed 6 beauties as fellow Boomers, Richard and Peggy Hanson, ran out of room in their freezer and generously made me the beneficiary of the extras.  What a great meal.  And best of all, I got to beat Nancy 6 to 1!!!  I now claim the title of "King Crab."
A typical afternoon at our rig at the Boomer crabbing gathering.
Nancy's Crabbing & Clamming Fetish Necklace.
She won 1st prize at the gathering for her art.
     At the gathering, we were able to spend a lot of time with Tony and Dee Dee Sparks, who just sold their house and are now officially "full-timers."  It was Tony and Dee Dee who armed us with the crab traps.  Also, we were joined by Glenn and Sharon Washburn.  Glenn and Sharon are friends from another life as I worked with Glenn for several years.  They are new to the road as they started their full-time life this summer.  So far, they are having a blast.
Glenn & Sharon Washburn in their beautiful Tiffin Phaeton motor home.
Tony & Dee Dee Sparks
     We stayed 10 days at the crabbing festival, but soon we all had to part.  For us it was back to Eugene for a little work on the slide-outs.  Our first night back in Eugene was a disaster!  We had a great, free camping spot along one of Eugene's bike trails.  When we got up the next morning we were treated to this:
My 9 month old mountain bike.
     Although I have a "bombproof" lock on my bike, it seems that the Eugene thieves show up with tools.  Since they could not get my bike frame off the bike rack they just disassembled it piece-by-piece.  I was later advised that Eugene has been dubbed "the bike theft capital of the world." I hate low-lifes!  Our supposedly free campsite now cost me the price of another new bike.  Further, Nancy got into the action as she used the purchase of my 2nd new bike in a year as leverage to purchase her own electric bike.  This was one expensive trip to Eugene.  We love Eugene, but we will never camp anywhere near this town again.
Nancy's new electric bike.     
     Since the rain had started again, we decided to head east over the Cascades to the supposedly drier town of Bend, Oregon.  Bend is one of favorite towns as it is in a beautiful setting on the high desert and sits in the shadow of the Sisters Mountains.  There is a never-ending list of things to do in Bend so spent our time biking, touring scenic highways, and visiting the Newberry Volcanic National Monument.  Before we knew it the rain had found us so off we went.
Mount Bachelor on the Cascade Lakes Scenic Highway
near Bend, OR.
Obsidian flow in Newberry Volcanic
National Monument.

The view from the top of Paulina Mountain in
Newberry Volcanic National Monument.
     After a long day of driving, our next stop was just outside of Boise, Idaho for the night.  The next day it turned out that the rain had found us again.  We needed to get away from these gray/wet days, so after driving halfway across Idaho we decided to take a right--and that made all the difference!


  1. Sorry to hear about your bike! We love that area and usually stop once a year to do some crabbing and clamming. What a cool idea to incorporate some of their parts into jewelry!


Post a Comment