Friday, July 25, 2014



The next few day will take us to a Capital Building, mansion, more Oregon waterfalls & lookout point, Lewis & Clark National Park and a sunken ship that ran aground in 1906 along the stretch of the coastal region of the Pacific Northwest nicknamed, "Graveyard of the Pacific".

24 May

First stop Gas! I have to talk about this for a second. I might be dating myself when I say this but, I remember back when my parents stopped at a gas station someone came out and pumped our gas. Well, Oregon is the last state that it's against the law for a POV owner to pump their own gas. The guy at the pump knew I must have been a tourist when I jumped our my RV and tried to pump my gas.

As we head North towards Portland, we made a brief stop in the Capital of Oregon ... Salem. Luckily for us it was Saturday and there was lots of large open parking on the main street in front of the Capital Building. As we arrived and started to take our pictures, a wedding party and what looked to be a high school senior prom lined the steps of the Capital Building and started taken pictures. We kind of followed and jumped in when we could and took our pictures and moved on.

We headed out of Salem and through Portland and Eastward towards Corbett to Crown Point RV Park. Again I found this campground in my passport America book. The RV Park is kind of tucked inside a mountain town. All the lot were taken, but we got a dry site next to the camp host. The camp host was kind of enough to let us split the water and plug into their 20 amp. Good thing I have a converter plug. I just had to make sure we did not turn to much electrical items on at the same time. We would only be in our RV in the evening as we had a long list of daily actives to try and complete before we would head to Washington State in four days.

25 May

Today's road trip took us to Pittock Mansion and a walk in downtown Portland. There is no fee to enter the ground of Pittock Mansion, but there is a $9.50 fee to tour the Mansion. We got a $1 per ticket with military discounts. A French Renaissance-style in the West Hill of Portland Oregon. I would describe it as a three story half circle home sitting on a mountain top with a panoramic view of downtown Portland. Built in 1914 for around $350,000. Because of Mrs. Georgiana Pittock suffering from a stroke while the home was still being built, Pittock Mansion became the first residential home with an elevator. In 1966 (if I remember correctly) The Pittock estate tried to sell the house, but had no buyers. The City of Portland purchased the house for $250,000. Mr. Henry Pittock wealth was estimated to be around $10 million. After his death in 1919 he had a 20 year hold on his estate. Some family members went to court trying to unfreeze their inheritance, but the 20 year hold on his estate was upheld.

We headed to downtown Portland to walk around and try dinner from a food truck. It was the first either one of us has ever done so... it was not that bad.

26 May

Memorial Day, the official start of summer and we went to the waterfalls and lookout points. Parking was little to none with lines of cars waiting for open parking spots along the road making traffic a slow or none moving at times. Some of the small waterfalls have small parking lots and very little road parking. The most visited  Mulnomah Falls has a bigger parking lot and more road parking, it's is not big enough for everyone who came today. While waiting in the traffic I could see a parking lot / rest stop on the highway that had a walking trail to the waterfall. As soon as we had the chance we went around all the traffic blocking the street and headed to the highway. As we arrived at the parking lot there was lots of parking spaces and we walked the trail to the waterfall. As we got to the street to cross into the view area, there was still cars that was in front of us waiting for parking spots to open. Lesson learn, park on the highway and take the walking path... a little extra walking is always good for us.

On the way there are several lookouts with remarkable views on Historical Route 30. The one I recommend to anyone in the area must stop and see the Crown Point Vista House.The building and view is stunning.

For dinner I BBQ steak and chicken. I cooked all our meat so when we're on the road it would be easy to just reheat it in the microwave for a few minutes using the generator, then having to cook after a long day on the road driving and making the living space more hotter.

27 May

We headed to the coast for our day trip to Lewis & Clark NP. To my surprise there was a $3 a person fee to walk in the back to see a replica of the Lewis & Clark fort built they would have used in the winter. The original Fort Clatsop  rotted away sometime in the mid 1800's. As always, we used our trusted National Park Pass and got in for free.

Before heading back we made one more stop. Just up the road at Fort Stevens State Park we went to see the ship wreck of Peter Iredale. There was no fee to enter the State Park, unless you are camping. Peter Iredale is one of the most accessible sunken ships as it ran aground on 25 Oct 1906. Lot of the ship was either taken or was washed away and buried by the sea. Almost 108 years later you can still see parts of the ship's haul sticking out along the beach.

Next, a week stay at JBLM FAMCAMP (Military base) for some small fixes to the RV.

Thursday, July 10, 2014



I changed my header photo... what do you think?

This week was full of adventures. We started off with waterfalls and wooden cover bridges. Followed up by sea lions and buggy rides at Oregon Dunes NRA. We drove through a Safari ... lions, tigers and bears Oh my! And capping off our stay with a movie at the drive-in theater. 

19 May

We arrived at Hi-Way RV Park in Sutherlin, OR. I found this place in my Passport America Book. The main office is a large yellow barn and the view from every sit is the large drive-in movie theater screen. Every Friday and Saturday is movie night for all campers to see. I was told by the front desk that this is the only RV Park that has a drive-in theater, thus making it a one of a kind campground. Sunday - Thursday we used our Passport America pass for 50% off and Friday we used Good Sam and got 10% off.

Sutherlin, OR is a good place for us to stay as everything we wanted to see is within an hour or less drive. The only place we could not go was Crater Lake NP as the Northern entrance roads were still snowed in.

20 May

We did the local sight seeing of waterfalls and wooden cover bridges. The cover bridges date back to the 1920's and are still used today. In Roseburg, one or two exits south of Sutherlin is know for their waterfalls. Exit the highway and follow the road as it will lead you along a rapid water streams on one side and large mountain hillside on the other and that is were we found the best waterfalls. There are pullovers and open parking lots. There are hiking trails that leads back into the mountain side that have some awesome waterfall views. There is no way we could see every waterfall or wooden cover bridges in one day, we only had time to see a few. But, we surely had fun looking for as many as we could.

21 May

We headed West to the ocean coast to stop by the Sea Lion Caves. The parking lot has a few friendly RV parking spots. Price is a little steep at $14, we got $1 off per person with my military discount and a free bag of popcorn. We walked down the trail to the cliff overhang and looked down to the rocks were a lot of sea lions were sun bathing. We then, headed to the caves and took the elevator to the bottom of the cliff and walked into the cave. We could not get down to the where the sea lions are located, but there is an open window with a view of the sea lions laying on the rocks with the sea water crashing on to them.

Next, was the Oregon Dunes NRA. The last time I was on the dunes was in United Arab of Emirates. My wife, has never been dune bugging. We got our buggy ride from Oregon Dunes Sandland Adventures. Price was $15 a person and no military discounts. The wife does not like fast speed and flying over dune hills, so we took the large buggy tour. As the drive took us and a group of 10 other people over the dunes we got a informative trip. We drove on the open dunes and along the ocean beach. It was not all slow and informative, we got surprised with a few drops of 30 - 40 foot high dunes. Felt like the first drop off a roller coaster, some guy put his hand up, while some ladies was screaming. As we started to exit the dunes and head back on the main road to return we saw two white tail deer run across the open dunes (no photo, but video... look for it in a VLOG coming soon).

22 May

Wildlife Safari was $17.19 each as we got a 10% military discount. We got not one, but two tickets to drive through the Safari. However, we only drove though the park once. I can't really describe the drive other then seeing wildlife animals from the safe view of our car. Most of the animals had large open roaming field, but they had the right of way when crossing on the road.

23 May

The wife has never been to a drive-in movie, so we stayed one more day so she could experience it. The movie tonight was Men in Black III. Not the best in the series, but still a pretty good movie. The night brought back memories of when I was a VERY YOUNG boy. They even had a pre-showing of a silent "Pink Panther", have not seen one of them in years.

We saw people sitting in their driver seat of their RV, others sat in lawn chair in the open field, but for us.... we were the only ones in a car. I pulled the car around and we took in the drive-in movie as it was intended to be viewed. I even brought popcorn and soda in my movie cups. We turned the car radio to the assigned frequency, reclined the car seats back and watch the movie.

Next, Portland, OR (and the surrounding areas) here we come.