We started planning a Circle camping trip after Tempus and my anniversary trip last October (our 25th in 2013), but work schedules and real life got badly in the way and it finally turned into a “rock” trip, just an overnight-and-a-lot-of-driving couple of days. We had so much fun, though!
We started packing on Sunday and Monday, and so didn’t have whacking lot to do on Tuesday morning (9/16). Tempus and I got going pretty early and were at Marius’ place by 7:30. We re-packed his car and headed for Freddie’s. By 8:30 I was done shopping and waiting for the guys to get checked through the line. We got some treats, doughnuts, lunch stuff and drinkables and then headed out Rt, 20, talking all the way.
We stopped a little after 11am at the Hackleman old growth forest. Tempus
had dozed off , so Marius and I left him the car and took off down the trail to visit the trees. We took lots of pix. When we came back up , we made the acquaintance of the *stinkiest* woods john, and tried to get some pictures of a hornet and a butterfly chasing each other. We weren’t sure whether the pictures turned out or that we caught anything on the pictures…and we didn’t.
I didn’t know that insects play tag? At one point a bird was making a whistling sound and I tried to hit the pitch and imitate the call. I managed it on the 3rd try and the bird answered back with what sounded like a “WTF!” sound. Marius and I cracked up. Tempus was awake by then and met us and we talked and commented a bit.
We took off again around noon and drove through a lot of burnt trees, none of it really new. Some of them, with their burned trunks and branches where the burnt bark had all flaked away, turning them white, looked like it had snowed. Marius commented that even there you could see how nature was renewing herself in the undergrowth, new trees, even grass growing where last year’s damage had been.
We headed north when we hit Bend, catching one “wrong” turn, that nevertheless got us back onto the highway, rolled up to Madras, then turned onto the Deschutes highway and drove the dozen or so miles to Richardson’s, nearly missing the turn….which we do about 2 times out of 3….as many times as we’ve been there.
They’ve graded the road since we were last there, so it wasn’t as corduroy as usual. There weren’t as many birds around the ranch as we’re used to seeing for some reason. Timing, maybe? The watch emus were out of the pen close to the road, and I never saw then, although Marius did, but a few peacocks stalked past, being their exhibitionistic selves, and twice a little black hen… no idea whether it was two birds, or one twice…. ran across the parking area screeching, for some reason. There were also a ton of little birds all clustered around a bucket of grain that was set out for them.
It was 2pm when we pulled into the lot and it was *hot*! ….hot for us coasties…. about 90. I nearly passed out after choosing rocks out in the sun…. Stupid me forgot a hat! Those piles of rocks of all fascinating varieties kept calling to me, though! We’ve got some lavendar quartz, rose quartz (that I’m going to tumble, plus a couple) sodalite and geode bits, a couple of odds and ends and slabs.
After that we were inside. Stuff that’s for sale….
I was choosing worry stones and pendulums and mortar and pestle sets and keychains and eggs….lots of eggs… and then we had some orders to find things to fill.
$363 dollars later we finally sat down to having lunch, which was hoagie sandwiches. We also looked at some of the museum specimens they have, from the “dry aquarium” to centuries old jade, huge amethyst cathedrals (one is ceiling high, but the pic didn’t turn out) and the most incredible vase of carnelian so red and clear that it’s more like glass than stone.
After we were done gawking we drove back to Bend, found the Shilo (where we stayed) and drove on to the military surplus store, which had all kinds of fascinating stuff of a very different type….and hats. 🙂 We had hit there around 5pm and around 6:30 or so were checking in at the hotel and offloading stuff.
We had a leisurely and marvelous supper at the restaurant associated with the hotel, starting with a gorgonzola and cream on potatoes appetizer that was to die for! …and a tasty main course (I had marinated chicken, Marius a steak and Tempus an Angus Burger) …and we had leftovers, yet. We didn’t have room for dessert. We chose to eat outside on the deck where there is a fountain with its own little stream and an outdoor swimming pool. The temp was in the low 70’s, only little zephyrs blowing by once in awhile, not a ton of people and no mosquitoes.
We got back from supper at about 8pm, and after digesting for awhile, tried the little patio to listen to the river, then headed for the pool and spa. We spent a couple of hours there, swimming and soaking alternately… and talking, of course. It was going on 10:30 at that point and one by one we headed for bed. I was last, typing until I was getting sleepy.
I got up at dawn, overheated, since the AC never did turn on. We figured that out in the morning, not being tired and sleepy at that point… We needed to turn on a main thermostat….
I went and sat on the little personal patio, watching the growing light, but with a small table stuck between the door and the jamb, having locked myself out the night before. 🙂 There were a lot of mallards and jumping fish rings on the river and I saw something….too dark to be sure what… too small for an otter, but with the same swim profile….heading determinedly upstream.I went back in and slept for a little, but got up around 6:45 again and got the newsletter out. This is the view from the patio at around 7:30am.
The guys were still asleep while I was doing that, although at one point Marius just turned off the alarm and said he was going to sleep for a bit, yet. 🙂 It was completely overcast and 56F at that point, although by the time we were up and packing it had cleared up and it was lovely weather. We alternated snoring and opening our eyes until I was finally wide awake and Tempus made coffee, which was decaf and horrid! Urgh…..We started rustling around getting the morning moving and I discovered that I had no comb and no toothbrush. oog….
Tempus went outside and picked up a lot of juniper berries for drying from the tree behind the room and then unpacked the fridge into the icebag. having filled a lot of pop bottles for drinking during the day. we packed up, checked out and went across the street to have breakfast at Shari’s.
They guys were deep in plans for finding all kinds of marvelous pieces at Glass Buttes, also of building a ballista…. totally different topic, and then I went off on myths and mythologizing. We have some of the weirdest conversations…..
By 11am we were rolling out of Bend, having also gotten some water and gas and such. The countryside goes rural pretty fast and desert *really* fast after that. There are two places whose names I remember in between. Brothers has the rest area (the next one is 72 miles farther!) and the other is Hampton, which I remember from growing up in a neighborhood of that name, named after the Hampton Mansions that was built by the Ridgely family in the colonial era.
I took a bunch of flora pix at the rest area.
We got to Glass Buttes around 1pm. The first pic to the left is the digging areas. It’s hard to find the turn-off, but it’s by the 77 mile marker. There weren’t any porta-biffies left after the summer, although there had been on the google map, just last week, so I had them drop me off by a lovely juniper tree right in the middle of the triangle in this 2nd map, right in the middle of the picture. They went off to the right hand corner of the lower map…. following the royal blue line that goes to the aurora borealis pits.
They found some good stuff, then hit the fire obsidian pits and got some more. According to them, they had to scale a 20 feet cliff and fight off not only other diggers, but the wiles of a couple of sirens … red-headed of course …. disporting themselves in a nearby pool. Um… 🙂
I lay back on the trunk of the tree and watched the clouds and listened to the silence of the material world and the lack of a sense of people. Oh, the area is not uninhabited, but no machine sounds, except when folks were heading past up to the pits, was heavenly. I tossed out the leftovers from lunch and had a number of sparrows, a couple of bluebirds, a chipmunk and something that looked far too like a rat for my comfort, but had a short tail and a wide hind end. I spent awhile picking up juniper resin tears and contemplated picking up some of the fallen fronds for drying and then decided not.
>>>>>>>>>>> “No, *this* is a knife! 🙂 >>>>>>>>>>>>>
Someone had been knapping by the tree and I looked at the debitage for awhile, picking over some of the bits.
I read a bit, stitched a bit, and then just sat. The smoke plume from the fire in the Estacada area showed up mid-afternoon. The wind had shifted a bit. It didn’t get hard to breathe or
anything, but the bright, clear air of Eastern Oregon wasn’t!
On the ground
Getting ready to go do something else.
When they came back for me, we did some “road-picking”, getting mostly black and mahogany obsidian, but I found a nice piece of green banded, then another, and then a piece that I’m pretty sure is gold sheen…. 3 coffee cans worth of stuff…..
Tempus looking over stuff in a pit. >>>>
My back started screaming, so I got back into the car and we headed over to the purple sheen pit (that’s where the deer pic is from). There were other people up there, but tooling around looking for things. We slowed down quickly at one point as 1/2 a dozen deer jumped across the road, but the time I got the camera out they were already a distance away, but left one lookout.
More pix from the area and the drive home.
We gave up when the road got too bad and headed out at around 5pm, stopping to use the rest area and then for gas in Bend. We stopped and got McD’s for supper and rolled home. That was a *long* haul! Offloading happened at Marius’, and then Tempus and I got home, unloaded stuff like the fridgables, came in and crashed.
I spent Thursday catching up and doing pictures and writing, but on Friday we started the unpacking and then on Saturday/Sunday I was busy with something else, so the real picture taking and inventorying and pricing and such started to happen on Monday.