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Second & third camping trips!

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What a study in contrasts! I camped in Lassen Volcanic National Park, which was greatly impacted by the Dixie Fires last year. Then I shifted to the coast and the dense, lush redwood forest.  A friend asked what I DO when I camp solo? Good question, since camp trips are typically about hanging out with others. My pattern for two-night stays has been: arrive late afternoon, get settled, poke around, eat dinner, read, sleep. Spend the next day on an activity - hike or paddle - plus meals and a book or two. Final day is just pack & go! Books-wise, my book group is reading The Ministry for the Future , near-term climate change sci-fi. After driving through burned-out landscapes it felt rather too close to home, so I’ll come back to that one. Instead I spent a delightful day reading Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine - so fun!  I’m happy to report I did paddle around Butte Lake - it’s not so huge but it was neat to paddle right along an ancient volcano flow (I’m a bit vague on the det

Return to tradition

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I moved from Portland to the Bay Area in 2006. It was a good move for my career, but my heart belonged to the Northwest and I knew it. Since I fully intended to move back someday, I was extra diligent to keep my connections there alive. One thing I started was an annual group trip to Ashland, Oregon, with friends from both places.  Ashland is home to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, a name that really doesn’t do justice to the 8+-month season or the 10+ plays they stage (many plays run for months so you can see 6 in a busy weekend). There’s always at least one Shakespeare show, but the company has evolved greatly to offer so much more!  I’ve gone with a varying group of friends - usually about 12 of us make it - every year since 2007. Naturally our group trips to watch theater wasn’t A Thing during these last two beknighted pandemic years, but in 2022 we made our return! I got to watch one of the warm-up shows (one person played cello while two others made massive soap bubbles); get st

First camping trip done

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Tuesday I hit the road with my VERY full car and noodled around a little. I stopped by a peony farm! It was a nice little wander. Then I got some lunch, and hit the road in earnest. I spent a couple of nights in a fairly utilitarian cabin, but hiked to see some BIG trees, some pretty great waterfalls, got some paddling in, read a book, and finally (sad to say) broke my crossword streak. The last time I didn’t do the crossword on the day it came out was Jan 20 2020. Amazing! Now I’m off to meet friends in Ashland, see some live theater, and then head on further camping adventures (this time even more rustic).

And I’m off!

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 First trip starts today. - 2 nights in a cabin/shack at Lost Lake, kayaking & hiking  - 4 nights in a hotel in Ashland, seeing plays & people  - 2 nights tent camping in Lassen Volcanic National Park, more kayaking & hiking - 2 nights tent camping in the redwoods. Hiking, no kayaking.  This means I had to pack: inflatable kayak. Bin of camping gear (tent, sleeping bag, etc). Cot, chair, paddles, PFD, pump for kayak. Borrowed camp stove & bin of camping kitchen gear. Duffel bag of clothes, to cover temps from 40-80 degrees. Cooler and bag of food. Not to mention clothes to wear in civilization when I go see a bunch of plays - I sent that small suitcase with my sister. Oh, also a stack of books and cds, and a sun hat, and a rain jacket, and and and … I’ve been making this list for a LONG time. Wonder what I’m forgetting? Right now I’m getting an oil change (no time like the present?) & mapping my route. Here we go! 

Making plans - TRAVEL flavor!

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Here's what everyone asks about ... so what will I be DOING in the next chunk of time? First - road trip in Oregon and Northern California. I'll camp & bring my inflatable kayak. I'm going to  Clear Lake Resort - where "resort" is used very very lightly. I have a cabin for two nights, it's basically four walls, a bed with a curtain around it, and a futon for guests. But the waters are famously cold and clear, so it should be great for paddling on.  Oregon Shakespeare Festival - I've gone every year since 2007 (not counting pandemic years, of course), and meet with friends from Portland and the Bay Area there. We'll go to dinner, see plays, and have a picnic in the park. It's fun being in town the same time as 10-12 friendly faces, as you wind up bumping into each other all over.  Lassen Volcanic National Park - specifically Butte Lake Campground . This will be my most primitive camping - no running water, vault toilet, and it was impacted by

Making plans - technology flavor

I’ve saved money, I’ve given notice at work, my sister will be in my house to hold down the home front, I’ve been building up my miles accounts for years, and I’ve started committing to a lot of travel plans in the next few months. What else do I need to think about? Yep - technology. Staying in touch:  looks like I can buy data plans that will work for my iPhone in all the countries I’m planning to hit so far. Switching to some other plan like Google fi might make more fiscal sense but it’s only in beta for the iPhone and I just don’t want to mess with connectivity. I’d rather throw some money at it and keep it otherwise simple. Also open to having a burner phone or swapping out my SIM card. I have an iPhone SE 2020 and intend to stick with it - sure, the newer cameras are even better, but what it has is really very good.  I have an iPad I can bring with me - I don’t tend to watch a lot of videos or shows, but … I might want to?  I gave away my kindle and haven’t decided if I want to

Milestone

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Hey look! My car hit 100,000 miles and I was even able to safely capture the moment. I was on my way home from a (partly rainy, semi chilly, yet fun) camping trip. It’s gorgeous in Eastern Oregon and I got my second paddle of the year in. Not a bad way to wrap up May!