When we got to Ashland just a few miles into Oregon, we met up with Jenn (and Gram), friends from the Outward Bound community. HUGE thanks to them, as Jenn, Alder and Josie generously hosted us in their house for a few days, where we organized and put together our resupply boxes for the next 450 some miles in Oregon. There are several small campgrounds and resorts very close to the trail in Oregon, where many thru hikers send themselves care packages since there are no adequate grocery stores near the trail to buy from.
We also were happy to be able to visit and hangout with our old friends Nick and Elizebeth while we were in town which was a great time as always.
We hiked across Oregon in 21 days without any zero days. Turns out the state of Oregon was some of our favorite sections! Here we are at Crater lake walking around the south rim. We kept Balu close by and on the leash, per the sign below…
Below is a cool “octagon” ski cabin that we found and stayed at, near McKenzie pass in Oregon. It even had solar powered lights inside!
This is a photo showing all the hail on the ground outside our tent after a afternoon mountain storm blew in. We narrowly got our tent up in time before it started dumping rain and ice! I think we liked Oregon so much because every day or two we passed by another mountain. First we would see it in the distance, and then it would get bigger and bigger as we approached… and then all of a sudden we would be at the base of it, and seeing the next mountain up ahead. The 3 sisters, Mt. Thielson, Jefferson, 3 fingered Jack, Washington, Hood… all were spectacular and breath taking!
There was also many miles of Lava Rock flows that the trail crossed, which was very interesting geology. We had SupDog wear his shoes during these sections…. We are like a Nascar pit crew when we gear him up, and can quickly get his shoes on and off in just a few seconds with team work. His paws are trail hardened and he has never had any problems with them, but the Lava rock can be very rough and jagged.. can never be to careful with our baby dog!
Our friends She-ra and Kirk came out from Bend to meet us on the trail… they are so awesome! They brought us the BIGGEST pizza we have ever seen! i.e. the best trail magic ever. Thanks guys!
There were a few river crossing… this one on the Sandy River being the most hair raising. We walked upstream for at least an hour to find the safest spot to cross. Always with a lot of care and thought, and scouting any water hazards, we developed a system of passing the dog across the deep or swift current. With the the handle on his harness, we could hand him off like a suit case! Here I am below grinning at how cold the water is!
“View while relaxing”. Here is a bowl of water for SupDog, the solar panel charging up the smart phone, topo maps in the dirt, shoes off, taking a cat nap… We were getting more and more ambitious as we hiked north. Our mileage was increasing and we felt awesome. We pushed hard to get to Timberline Lodge on Mt. Hood on Wednesday so that we could eat the delicious “all you can eat” buffet lunch, hitch to Luna’s parents’ house to pack our resupply boxes for Washington, and of course shower and do laundry. Thursday morning we drove back to Timberline Lodge and hiked to Lolo Pass. The following morning we woke up in puddles from the all night rain. No one was going to make it the 25 miles via the Eagle Creek trail to Cascade locks by the end of the day. It was our first real soaking, and a reminder that we needed to upgrade our gear. Luna was able to text her parents (who arrived home from Michigan the night before!) and request a pick up. Tom arrived with the camper, loaded 8 hikers in and brought them to their house in Sandy, 20 miles away. After we dried out and ate pizza, we traveled to Cascade Locks to drop off the other hikers who wanted to go to Trail Days.
We brought our trail buddies Uni-crock, Scat Tracker and Sierra Bum into town with us. Thanks to all our old house mates for hosting us all! We took the time in PDX to organize and put together our maildrops/packages for Washington… another 450 miles to go!
After a weekend in Portland we returned to Lolo Pass to continue our hike. We took the beautiful Eagle Creek Trail alternate into Cascade Locks. The waterfalls were spectacular!