Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Two blogs for the price of one

We love to share our pictures and it's great to see them used and posted on other peoples Blogs. That is until last week when we spent some time at our daughter Deanna and Darin's. While there I got several pictures of our granddaughter, Daisy. My plan was to use them in our next Blog, that is until I checked out Deanna's Blog and found out she beat us to it. Oh well you will just have to visit her site to see what the fun was all about. A two year old's first time on a horse.

Darin is the Program Director at Miracle Ranch, a Christian camp for kids. They have a home on the back area of the property near the barn with a huge grassy area around their home. The pictures don't really show how steep it is getting down to the house, but here we are in the upper right getting ready to head down the hill and try to get the rig level.

It took some time to get it just right and two wheels up on blocks. We hooked up to fresh water and ran an extension cord into one of the windows for a little power. Next time here we hope to extend our sewer hose and get hooked up to the septic system. No big thing, just have to get under the house and see what's there to connect to. Next time we think we will try to back straight down if we can get the rig turned around at the top.

This is just another reason to visit: Dick has two of his girls sitting on his lap. CC was a little concerned when Daisy was around. She learned fast to head for parts unknown when she started to get too close.

Just down the road was a salt water beach at Purdy Washington. Took a trip down there one day to let Daisy toss rocks into the water. Daisy started with rock in hand and staying dry. She has a good arm and can hit the water from here. But...

if I get a little closer I can make a bigger splash and it sure would be more fun. I can still stay a little dry.

I think I will head out further and see if there are better rocks out there. Careful Mom, the tide is coming in and you are going to get wet.

This is just too much fun, who cares if I get a little wet. The only thing dry is her hat but she can sure find more rocks out here to throw.

Heading back to get warm and ...

To be continued...

Saturday, June 20, 2009

MOC part 4 and heading home

Well, here we go again, a little late in getting back to the computer as we are now in Wauna, Washington taking care of our 2 year old granddaughter who is keeping us busy.

But first back to the Montana Owners Rally. Phase 4 of the rally brought us back across the mountains, west to east, to 7 Feathers Casino in Canyonville Oregon. This is a very beautiful and well done park in the mountains across the freeway from the casino. The views are spectacular and the park is full of trees and large sites. If the need strikes you all you have to do is call the office and a bus will meet you at your site and take you to and from the casino.

The rally with over 40 rigs kept us busy with a visit from factory representatives from the Keystone factory and also Mor/Ryde. Lots of time to spend with old friends and meet new ones. We had one morning to visit and see what all the other Montana owners had done special with there rigs. Food was one of the big things at the rally; one morning we had over 80 people sharing baggie breakfasts. Another day we all went out to dinner at a Mexican restaurant and took over the whole place. We won't bore you with all the other things we shared. It's hard for us to put into words the great time we had so I will let new friends Wayne and Carolyn Mathews of Horse Prarie, Montana explain it. Reprinted with her permission.

"I normally am not at a loss for words, whether they're spoken or typed, but as the 7 Feathers group prepared to leave this evening, I knew I couldn't say a word without shedding some tears, so I said nothing at all. That won't do.

The rally was wonderful. In my wildest dreams, I'd never imagined that something like having an RV in common could bring such a congenial group together. During the week, I tried to compare this rally to various things so that I could explain to my friends and family just how much fun I was having. Like a week at a great summer camp? No I remember too many little kids crying and begging to go home when I went to camp. Like being with your best friends at school? No, because even in that group there frequently were many dynamics at work, preventing a true esprit de corps.

My conclusion is that nothing I've ever done, nothing, compares to this week at my first rally. We've made good friends, shared a lot of good times together with everyone, and learned that the MOC is a real family. Sharing, helping, socializing--what a great time!

Thanks to everyone who worked so hard to put on this rally. I know that for every hour of fun we had here, someone put in many hours over the last months ensuring that things ran smoothly. Thanks, too, for making us feel welcome immediately. You--we--are truly an amazing group, don't you think?..."

Dick took some time to climb the hill behind the park and was able to get a few shots and back down before getting caught and told to stay off the hill, like some others did. What a sly guy.

These are the best shots he could get, as the higher you went up the hillside the more trees there were, blocking the view. There are times we wish we had a chainsaw (like Robbie) and could just clear cut a large area so we could see better and get some more pictures.

This is just the set-up for one evening where most everyone brought snacks and treats and maybe a bottle of wine or two or other libations to share. More food than one knows what to do with. (But somehow we managed!)

Load up your plates and lets sit down and get to know each other.

The outside covered pavilion was a perfect place to sit and eat. Just a few feet away was 3 fire pits that the park staff would start camp fires for us and use their wood. What a pleasant change that was.

But lets not forget our master chefs who cooked oysters on the grill for those who wanted them. Thanks Ray and Carl.

As a parting shot from the rally we reflect on the good time we had and the great people we met.
Thanks to all for your hard work.

We headed out for one last stop before getting back to Washington. This was near the town of Silverton Oregon where if not it should be called the Christmas tree capital of the world. There were acres and acres of planted trees everywhere you looked.

We went out one day to the State Park to see the sights and do a little geocaching. We did find 4 caches including one not too far from the base of the falls. I wanted to use the long lens for this shot but found out it was now in California as Dick left it in a friend's truck and forgot to get it out. (Luckily for us that friend found it and it has now been safely returned along with some wonderful peanut brittle -- thanks Roxanne for the peanut brittle and helping John return the lens.)

The scenery in the area was spectacular especially after several months of seeing just brown in the desert. Here the wheat fields are green and growing tall. Do wish there was some blue in the sky for a better picture, but we are back in the Northwest.

A hazy day looking across the fields and farms, wow, what a site.

One last parting shot of some wildflowers we found near a geocache. Somehow they all ended up in the truck in a water bottle for us to take home.
To be continued...

Monday, June 8, 2009

North Bend Oregon

We arrived at the Mill Casino RV park in North Bend Oregon a day earlier than the rest of the Montana crew because of the heat in south central Oregon (no air conditioner). This is the 3rd stage of a 4-stage Montana owners rally and finally it's nice and cool. Because we came in a day early we watched all the other Montanas arrive and set up. The park was an okay park near the bay but they had us strung out from one end to the other. We had 50 amp service so could run our AC except it was still broken and we decided it would be better to run our heaters.

This view from the top of the hill was the best we could do showing all the rigs but can only see about 2/3 of them here. The area in the dirt was all "free" dry camping for those too cheap to pay for hook-ups. A shuttle bus ran around and around all day and night to take you to the casino. When we went there we walked except for the night it was raining and we got a ride back home.

The park left one empty spot so we took it over and had evening snacks and libations. The wagon masters purchased dozens of oysters and cooked them over the grill as a special treat for those that like oysters. We did drive north to Florence and took over a restaurant for dinner one evening. Food was great and the prices were very good.

After being away from the beach for several months, CC never forgot how much she enjoys it. As soon as we cut her loose she was gone, running circles around and around us. It was fun to see her again out on the sand at the ocean. She is so fast that it's hard to get a good movement picture of her but this looked like a fun shot to post.

She would run and run, and then just stop and lay down trying to catch her breath. She would rest for a minute, jump up, lick the sand, and take off again.

We took a drive along some of the Oregon coast that we wanted to see again and got some more good pictures of another lighthouse on a sunny day. No wind on this day so the beach was pretty calm with just a few waves breaking near the rocks.

Just another shot looking due east out to Japan; it's just over the horizon a mile or so. Feel free to use it as a screen saver if you want. It looks good on our computer.

Six of us took a drive to Bandon and spent some time checking out the town, had a picnic lunch at a park and took a tour of Coquille River Lighthouse. We got to go to the top but it only had room for 5 at a time. The glass had all been removed and was replaced with weathered plastic so it was hard to see out of it. Would have loved to get some shots from up there but oh well.

A quick shot looking down the stairs and...

another picture of the two of us; thanks John for the shot. As you can tell by out jackets, it was a little cooler than the 100+ that we had been in for a few days.

Oh, we almost forgot, we took another beach walk that same day. This shows part of the stairs to get to the beach--lots of stairs but with lots of landings and benches. The tide was out so we had lots of beach to walk. Again CC loved to run in her circles.

After checking out the rocks where the sea lions are resting the ladies decided they were going to get wet feet getting back. CC would run about halfway across and a wave would wash over and back she would go. They all finally made it back with just a little wet feet.

As a parting shot we offer another beach picture of the three of us. Had to do some climbing to get up there but we made it up and down with no mishaps. (CC wasn't too sure about being up there, but she was a good sport, as usual.)

We are now at Canyonville Oregon on part 4 of a 4-part rally but more on that later.

To be continued...

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Back in the Northwest

Another move just north into Oregon, wow do we enjoy seeing all the trees and green again. The desert is beautiful but now that we are back in the NW it sure is great.

The Montana Owners (MOC) rally continues to stop number 2 at the Valley of the Rogue State park near Grants Pass, Oregon. We arrived on Wednesday the 27th, set up camp along with lots of Montanas and watched the temperature gauge rise and rise. Normally this is no big thing but our AC is on the fritz and it sure gets hot inside when it gets into the high 90s. Makes for some long restless nights. We paid for 3 nights but after the second we decided to get out of town and head for stop number 3 on the rally tour. We left on Friday and headed over the mountains to the ocean, and arrived at Mill Casino in North Bend Oregon to a wonderful 65 degrees and sunny sky.

We set up got our lawn chairs out and just relaxed in the cooler climate. More on the 3rd stop on our next blog.

On Thursday about 29 of us thought it would be great to get out onto the water and take a 2- hour boat trip to Hellgate on the Rogue river. Here the boat is just about full except for one row of seats. Our delegation is all behind that empty row. Can you find us in the picture? We boarded the boat and headed out under the bridge where this picture was taken. Thanks Carl for the copy.
Dick was able to turn around and get some pictures of our group before they all got wet.

Look at the concentration, trying to see some wildlife along the shore and in the air.

Is John taking a nap behind those shades?

We did see some deer along the side of the hill and this eagle sitting in the tree above the river. We also so lots of large nests and birds along the way. The water was pretty smooth but there were a few areas of white water.

This is the entrance into hellgate; it continues to get very narrow with maybe 10' on each side of the boat. Again the water was pretty calm even going through this cut. Lots of water flowing here.

A little further through the canyon it looks like a dead end ahead. We did make it through and then turned around for the trip back to the landing.

On the way back we played leap frog with another boat and the skipper would jump the wake and then put the boat into a 360 degree spin, trying to see if he could splash everyone in the boat. Being in the 90's, the cold water sure felt good. It only took us a 1/2 hour to get dry after we got back to the beach.

All this white water was made by the two boats to see how wet we could get. We had a great time with a great group of people but it will be good to get out of this heat.

To be continued...