oregon adventures

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Boston Trip

In September of 2012 my daughter and I flew to Boston for a week. We got there and rented a Ford Escape and checked into the Doubletree Suites on the Charles River. The next day my daughter met up with a friend, so I took off to Concord New Hampshire and toured the capitol building there. Then I set out for Montpelier Vermont. Toured the Vermont capitol building which was almost identical to the New Hampshire capitol. By then I was starving, so I found a healthy sandwich shop downtown and had lunch. Then changed clothes in a bathroom and went for a 3 mile run through the town of Montpelier on a bike path- cool town. Changed back into regular clothes and headed for Mt Mansfield the highpoint of Vermont. Had to pay $27 to drive the summit road and then hike 2 miles to the top. Could see Lake Champlain and New York in one direction and Canada and Montreal in another direction. Another state highpoint checked off.
On the way back to the highway I stopped at Ben & Jerry's to see it. Then the long drive back to Boston. At Concord, I got off the highway and found a cool restaurant that was almost closed, but the cute waitress said stay as long as I want and they had great food. Back to Boston late that night. The next day I drove to Providence Rhode Island and toured the capitol building. Then I drove to the brder on Hwy. 101 and hiked .25 miles to the Rhode Island state highpoint which is a rock in a forest. I then drove across the border into Connecticut and changed into running clothes in a church parking lot then ran back into Rhode Island and back into Connecticut for 3 miles in both states, 6 total- check and check. Changed back and drove to Hartford. It was raining and windy by then. I toured the very ornate castle-like capitol (picture).
Afterwards I went to Mark Twain's house, but you have to take a tour and it was an hour wait, so I drove back to Boston in a windy downpour. Met my daughter in downtown Boston and we ate lobster at a tent-like place called the Barking Crab with a beautiful view of downtown Boston and the Charles river. The next day my daughter and I were going to drive up to Mt Washington, the New Hampshire highpoint. However, I woke up to strange sounds and no lights. Stepped outside the room to firemen and smoke. Threw some clothes on, grabbed my wallet and phone and evacuated. Walked over to a Whole Foods and had breakfast and waited. Several hours later the fire trucks left and we could get the car out of the garage. It was too late for Mt Washington, so we drove to Plymouth and saw the Mayflower and Plymouth Rock. Then drove all the way out to the end of Cape Cod to the beach. Then ate Lobster at a cool restaurant in Provincetown. Then back to the hotel which still didn't have any power so they put us up downtown at the Sheraton. The next day we drove to the western part of Massachusetts to Mt Greylock the state highpoint. A road goes to the top, but we stopped at the Appalacian Trail crossing and hiked the AT to the top. Drove the scenic way back to Boston and when we got close I saw a sign for Old Mill restaurant, so we stopped and got a window seat overlooking a waterfall in an old grist mill place that was very cool and had great food. The next day we took the subway to Boston Commons and toured the capitol. Then we walked the freedom trail and toured the old city hall (top picture) and toured old north church and Paul Revere's house (bottom picture). Back to the hotel and after dinner we walked over to Fenway Park and watched Baltimore beat the Red Sox. Walked back to the hotel and saw tons of people out walking. The next day I woke up early and ran around downtown Boston. Then checked out of the hotel and drove to Walden's Pond. Walked around the lake and saw a replica of his cabin. Then to the airport and back home. For the trip, 5 capitols, 4 new states run in, and 3 state highpoints.

Monday, February 03, 2014

Ice Lake Backpack

I took the week before Labor day weekend off in 2012 and rented a Ford Fusion to save wear and tear on my Jeep. Drove over to Bend and spent the night at the Hilton Garden. The next day I went to breakfast at Chow- very good. Then I drove up to the back of the Three Sisters wilderness to Three Creek Lake and climbed Tam McArthur Rim, 5 m 1200 ft. Made it back to the car just before dusk and drove into the town of Sisters and had dinner, then drove home. A couple of days later my daughter and I set out for the Wallowa Lake area. We ate dinner at an expensive, but nice restaurant in Joseph. Then spent the night in a motel on the far side of Wallowa Lake. (picture)
The next morning at 6AM we drove less than a mile to the end of the road and the trailhead. Set out with the backpacks and it was cold as heck and the straps hurt until a couple miles in I figured out how to cinch the straps properly. After 3 miles we had to cross the West Fork Wallowa River. The bridge was out and signs warned that emergency crews couldn't get to you quickly if you proceeded. We crossed on a log that was pretty scary. The next 4.5 miles we climbed 2300 feet through beautiful country to Ice Lake (top picture). Set up camp and by then it was hot out, then set out for the far side of the lake to climb the Matterhorn. It was a 2000 foot climb in a mile and a half. I got to about 9200 feet and it was too steep for me and I stopped. My daughter went on up to the 9826 foot summit and came back and we made it back to camp just as it got dark. (bottom picture is looking down on Ice Lake from where I stopped) My daughter boiled water for dinner and I pumped the filter to fill our water bottles. The next morning we packed up and zoomed down. It was surprisingly easy. At the log bridge, I fell over getting on the log which freaked me out, so I waded across the river instead of using the log. Had wet feet all the way back to the car from there. It was early lunch time when we got back, so we had huge burgers in Joseph and then took the long scenic drive home- Baker City to Prairie City and highway 26 back.