Wednesday, 30 March 2016

Day 18: Redwood Forest, CA to Portland, OR

Paul Bunyan and Babe the Ox are alive and well at The Trees of Mystery. 

Humboldt Redwoods State Park, CA
Cascade Locks, East of Portland, OR
494 Miles

This cow is heading for the barn!  There will be no vista point stops and no scenic drives.  The Gypsy Wagon is going home.  Originally, we were to hit the I-5 after San Francisco; however, when I saw how close we were to the Redwood forest I added that little detour through the Avenue of the Giants. This means we need to pay the piper and have two rather long days of driving to get home.  That's OK - we are up for it.

I thought that once we hit Crescent City we would be on larger roads. Oh, contraire. This drive is really pretty but narrow and meandering right up to Grant's Pass (west of Medford there on the map below by the two white dots).

North of Grant's Pass we still had to ride up and down the rolling hills of southern Oregon. So, we played let's pass the semi on the ups and they played let's pass the travel trailer on the downs.  This repeated about 5-6 times.

Today is Easter Sunday.  It was really strange to be driving hard on a day that is typically spent listening to 'Christ The Lord has Risen Today' on the CBC in the morning, going to church and then relaxing with my parents as they visit us in Kelowna.  This is the second year in a row that we find ourselves on the road.  Last year we were at the Grand Canyon - a site better than 500 miles of driving. Maybe next year I will have to remind myself to shorten the trip and be home for Easter, eh?!

We were treated to two rainbows today.  One in the car spray during a little rain coming over a summit and one far off in a field as we stopped for gas and food.

Starting near Eugene the traffic was thick.  Moving fast but cozy.  We learned our lesson well from our trip south through Portland and peeled off the I-5 south of Portland to take the 205.  This skirts around downtown and connects with the I-84 that runs east along the Columbia River Gorge.  Good move, Mama, since it is now twilight.

The rain started and I basically floored it to stay within site of the tail lights of a car.  Visibility was very poor.

We arrived at the Cascade Locks KOA in the dark and rain around 9:15 pm.  How nice to pull through, get those corners down and start the heater.

We were in for the last night on the road about 30 minutes east of Portland.

494 miles - no wonder this was a long day!

Walking past the Visitor's Centre to the park headquarters parking lot where
I could keep the truck overnight since it did not fit in our spot. 

Going around the figure-8 'roads' in the campground on our way out. 

Speaking of figure-8 . . immediately after this position we swing to the right.
A little tight S-bend to start our day. 

I can't resist a few more Avenue of the Giants pictures as we depart. 

Ah, the ocean!

Trees of Mystery. I recall being here when I was 9 years old. 

No problem - we are used to this now. 

No point looking back. . . 

Dutch Bros. Drive Thru coffee is a big thing here. 

Small town America. 

Burl stores dotted this highway. 

Grant's Pass Walmart for oil and matches for Grandpa.
Score on the matches - right beside the toothpicks. 

Highway rainbow.

More gas for Mr. Thirsty

Another rainbow. 

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