RubiKon Adventures

Tales and travels of "GrizzLee", "Looksha Lori" & "Yukon Johann"

Monday, July 26, 2010

Goat Rocks, Full Moon and a Volcano

Quote of the week "We're all here 'cuz we're not all there"
This weeks adventure took us to the cascades found south of Mt Rainier in Wa State. We doubt that there is better high mountain meadows within easier grasp than the flanks of an old volcano situated east of Mt St Helens. The Pacific Crest Trail passes through this area and the views are scrumptous to say the least.
Arriving at Snowgrass Flats after a long steady uphill climb through patches of snow.
Yukon Johann finds us a great camp in the high altitude meadows.

Our view looking south with Mt Adams in the distance
Our view looking north with Goat lake (frozen) in the saddle below Hawkeye peak.

Mt Adams through the trees.
Yukon Johann enjoying a tasty outdoor meal. You deserve it buddy!
Our view from camp looking east towards Ol' Snowy.
OMG!!! We forgot the reason why we came. It is nearly a full moon and this, my friends, is heaven. Quick, get the camera. Lights, action, cut, print!

Mt St Helens as we look west from our camp.
Directly north of St Helens we got some "purple mtns majesty"
Kamiah was "un-impressed" and looked a bit upset as we disturbed her from her late afternoon nap.
We can almost read her mind here. "Yeah, yeah, full moon, big deal, seen 'em before, now let me go back to sleep"

We all slept good that night, except mother nature left the night light on and we left our tent open for the midnight views.
A quick check on Mt Adams before bed. Yep, it hasn't moved since the last picture.

Our camp as we ascend to the top of Ol' Snowy (an extinct volcano).

We cross the pass on the Pacific Crest Trail at nearly 6500'. The highest point of the trail (in Washington state). It usually has snow nearly year round. Yukon Joahnn taking pictures of the handsome photographer taking his mug.
Speaking of handsome. GrizzLee posing with Kamiah at the crossroads of the trail.
Which way do we go girl?

Higher up, the views got spectacular.
Here we are at the highest point for miles (with the exception of Gilbert peak) which was less than 1 mile away and 400 feet higher in elevation. But... we didn't bring ropes, so we settled on Ol' Snowy peak at nearly 8000 feet. Not a bad way to spend a day at all.

A panoramic view from camp before we leave for our hike out. You can almost see the curvature and the base of this now, very extinct volcano. It is a fantastic place to view all kinds of metamorphic rock and remenants of volcanic ash spewed by Mt St Helens during her last eruption in 1980. It is predicted that the high meadow flowers will be in full bloom this mid August..... and so will the bugs! Buyer beware.

Until next time...

Friday, July 16, 2010

Nehalem Bay Oregon Coastal Adventure

Quote of the weekend: "Never confuse a long life with an interesting one."

Lori paddling Nehalem bay
GrizzLee enjoying the paddle towards the town of Wheeler.

This remenant from an ancient forest has provided a platform for young life, including many new trees. Although, elevated from the ground, high tides and rain bring all the moisture and nutrients needed to sustain life.

Paddling up the Nehalem river to the town of Nehalem.

The end of the day was great. We fought incoming tidal curents and WIND! Just as we got to shore, the wind subsided.

We had some friends join us from Vancouver. Rick was wearing his warm clothes and his fiance's sunglasses.

Our camp in the crowded campground.

Lori giving her best pose for the camera.

Of course there is one in every crowd. We found this amusing on full size Ford V8 truck.
Getting groceries for camp.

Yukon Johann and Kamiah decided to re-enact a scene from the movie "Jackass". Good thing there were no hills around.

The coastal highway is very scenic. This shot is looking back towards Cannon Beach.

All-in-all a great weekend. We agreed that next time we would take an extra day. The weather was nice and our time on the coast was too short.

Until next time...

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

First Big Ride (1100+ miles) Crater Lake and a Boatload of Volcanos

Yukon Johann and GrizzLee headed out for the ride of their lives. When all was said and done they traveled well over 1100 miles in 4 days of riding. This almost doubled the mileage on the bike which now reads around 2400 miles.

Our trip took us through some of the best volcano scenery in the United States which included, Mt Rainier, Mt St Helens, Bend Oregon, Mt Bachelor, Three Sisters, Broken Top, Diamond Pk, Mt Theilsen, Crater Lake and views into northern California where we could see Mt Shasta and Mt Lassen. The trip was about the bike as much as it was for the scenery.

Panorama of the the "Sisters and Broken Top from the Mt Bachelor Ski lift.

Our trip started out pretty cold with a nice family breakfast at Denny's in Issaquah and then through Mt Rainier Natl Park.
It was cold and the frost sensor on the GS came on as the temperature dipped to nearly 35 degrees and dense fog. We stopped to put on layers to warm us up. The heated grips were nice.

One of the many falls along the road in the park.

Of course, we had to pose for a picture with the falls making for a nice backdrop.

Darn if this kid isn't cute!
Mt Hood makes for a great back drop.

GrizzLee and his toy.
All loaded up and ready to go. As we drive on a pumice road on Mt Hood.

Mt Hood. Great place to camp!
Yukon Johann posing on a boulder with Mt Hood in the background.

Approaching Smith Rock state park in Redmond Oregon we crossed one of numerous deep gorges, presumably carved out from the great glacial flooding that formed the Columbia river.
Smith Rock State park for dinner and sunset.
Smith Rock State Park is famous among hard core rock climbing enthusiasts. It is like a rite of passage to climb here on ones way to doing bigger walls.

Turning right at Bend, we headed out along the Cascade Lakes scenic byway. Mt Bachelor in the background.

Once again, this kid is cute!

We took the ski lift up Mt Bachelor to the resturaunt at 7700" for incredible views of the Three Sisters Volcanos and Broken Top. We could also see Mt Washington, Mt Jefferson and Mt Hood in the distance. Visibility was great and got even better in the next couple of days.
We posed for pictures. ... and why not, the volcano made for a nice back drop and a chance to capture a memorable moment.

The south Sister with a dead snag made for an interesting picture.

Great fun and great views.

Broken Top Volcano Peak.

Broken top from down in the valley.

The south Sister Volcano. Anywhere else in the U.S. and this place would be declared a National Park. This area has great natural beauty... all accessible form the road for the taking.

We arrived at Crater Lake Natl Park around 6:30 p.m. on July 4th.

We took a few photos and soaked in the views.
Great views they were. ... but we had no reservations and had to high-tail it down to Mazama Village to see if there were any campsites available. Fortunately for us there were some available. Being at 6,000 ft of elevation, the campground still had some snow... and BUGS!!!!

From the crater rim we could see Mt Theilsen and the South Sister(?) in the background.

Obligatory shot of the bike.
A picture within a picture, within a picture..... something like that. Things you can do with mirrors.
The next day at Crater Lake was marvelous... not a cloud in the sky!!! At 8,000 feet we were the highest point around for miles with views beyond compare.

That cinder cone you see in the lake is called Wizard Island. Crater Lake is the 7th deepest lake in the world (the deepest in the U.S) formed formed form the collapse of Mt Mazama a huge volcano that erupted around 7700 years ago.

A "not so good" panorama shot fo the lake from the rim. Hey, we had no tripod and and had to wing it. It does give a perspective of the circular nature of this unique volcanic lake.

On the way back we camped at Mt Hood and drove through Hood River, crossing into Washington and up to the town of Carson along the Columbia river. We drove through the woods towards Mt St Helens.

Yukon Joahnn showing his best biker pose for the camera.
Up near Windy Ridge, one can stare into the throat of the St Helens volcano. The roads up there are some of the best motorcycle roads anywere. Lots of curves and the blown down timber makes for great views and visibility around the next bend. GREAT RIDE!
We ended the day by riding back home through the Town of Randle and Packwood. We then traversed Mt Rainier Nat'l Park again and arrived home around 7:30 p.m. in the evening. We were glad to see Lori and had many new tales to tell.
One heck of a ride.
Until next time....