Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Pic-of-the-Week for September 12, 2017

Hello from Sumpter, Oregon.  Wow, it has been a long time since we sent out a Pic-of-the-Week!  Lots has happened since August 19th when we sent out our last update.  This part of our summer has been a break from working on the Model A Roadster.

First there was a total eclipse of the sun near Sisters, Oregon where we were having a family get together.  It was quite the event here in Oregon, although I do not think there were all the people that Oregon expected.  There were not the huge traffic jams that were expected, or the running out of food or gasoline.  The biggest problem for us was finding a place that was not too smoky to watch the eclipse.

After the family get together, we went to Harriet’s 50th class reunion.  She had a good time getting reacquainted with old school friends.  Then it was on to visit Baja friends on an island in the Columbia River.  The island is near the town of Cathlamet, Washington and is named Puget Island.  We were hoping that the salmon would be running in the Columbia River, but they were not while we were there.  We went for some nice boat rides instead.

The ferry from the island to the Oregon side of the Columbia River.  It runs once an hour.

Then it was back to my brother’s house near Sister’s to pick up my passport so I could go to our house in Baja California Sur because there was a storm coming and we had not completed all the preparations for a storm/hurricane before we left in July.  (Sam and Zoey were VERY glad to see me!)  The storm was not a huge amount of wind, but there was lots of water.  The arroyos ran from bank to bank. 

I had some water to mop up in the house during the storm, and there were problems with our generator.  It was not generating 120 volts, like it should, but rather it was only putting out about 108 – 110 volts.  We got though the time with the low voltage generator, and then I was able to fix the other generator which puts out the correct voltage.  It seems like there is always something that is a problem during/after a storm.

During the time I was in Mexico, Harriet was in Sisters finishing my quilt.  It is large and beautiful!

I returned from Mexico on Thursday, the 6th of September, and left on the 7th for a camping trip with Harriet and my brother John, who had never seen some of the most beautiful parts of southeast Oregon.  Not sure where he has been all his life!  (I think stuck on the windy, wet, and cold Oregon Coast.) 

On the way to Lakeview, we took a side trip through the back streets of Silver Lake for some photos of older homes.

Then on to Lakeview where we picked up a few pieces of obsidian, spent the night at our favorite RV camp site, and had dinner at Mario’s Restaurant.  Life is good!  The next day it was on to Hart Mountain Antelope  Refuge with the pronghorns, and camped near the hot springs.  On the way there we saw a cattle drive.  I had forgotten how dusty driving cattle can be.  Usually we see cattle being driven down the highway. 

We did not see as many pronghorns this year as we have most other years.  It could be that we arrived the day before opening day of hunting season.  (Do you think that could be it?)  There was a lot of water in the lakes below Hart Mountain in the Warner Valley.  More water than we have seen in a number of years there.  This was definitely a wet, snowy winter in Eastern Oregon.

After spending a night at Hart Mountain and enjoying a good long soak in the hot springs, it was on to the Steens Mountains with all their beautiful gorges cut out by glaciers.  On the way there we took photos of White Pelicans at Rock Creek Reservoir for our bird lover friends. 

Once we arrived at the base of the Steens, and set up camp at the Steens Mountain Wilderness Resort, we took a driving tour to the Pete French Round Barn, and the Diamond Valley area.  Again, we ran into a cattle drive where the cowboys and cow girls were moving a lot of cattle.  Very dusty conditions!

The next day we took the Steens Mountain Loop Road and saw the impressive mountains and gorges.  Below are just a very few of the many photos taken.  Go to 2017-09 September album  to see all the photos.

Ospray at camp

Fish Lake

Kiger Gorge

Golden Eagle

Wild Horse Lake at the top of Wild Horse Gorge

Big Indian Gorge

Wild (?) Horses enjoying water with pronghorns in the background.  The funny thing about this photo is that none of us saw the pronghorns until we saw this photo (using a pretty strong zoom setting)!

We dropped John off in Burns, Oregon where he caught a bus back to Bend, and his car, and we went on to Sumpter, Oregon where we are at the present time.  I must add that Sumpter has lost its charm, for me anyway.  It might be different prior to Labor Day Weekend, but now when we drove through the town looking for a place to eat breakfast, there were no breakfast restaurants, but there were two places open that we could have bought marijuana!

The next thing on our agenda is the Pendleton Roundup this weekend ("Let 'er buck!") and then we'll return to Bend where the Model A will magically come together so we can haul it back to Mexico.   We hope to leave Oregon October 3, and probably should, since we have guests coming to Baja in mid-October!!  Hopefully, East Pacific Hurricanes will stay away from Baja until we get back.

Hasta la proxima vez!
Ben & Harriet 

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Pic-of-the-Week for August 19, 2017

Hola from Bend/Sisters, Oregon,

Yes, that is where we currently are preparing for the Purkey Family Reunion which starts officially Sunday, the 20th.  You have not heard much from me because I have been busy!  We have traveled, worked on: the new Model A Roadster, the latest quilt, and(I am sure there must be something else)!

Traveling:  Early this month we went to Florence, Oregon for a quick trip to visit our friends Tony and Janet.  They are planning on moving to St. Croix this fall so we had to get in one last visit, and Harriet had to update her wardrobe with some of the pretty clothing Janet sells!  

Then it was meeting up with our friends John and Marilyn.  They said that they needed a break from their work, so they invited us to join them dry camping for a weekend at the Brooks, Oregon "Great Oregon Steam-Up".  http://www.antiquepowerland.com/html/what_is_steam-up-.html  The link gives you a good overview of what we were able to see.  This event is held every year on the last weekend in July and the first weekend in August.  It is a fun event to watch.  Below is a very small sample of some of the items that we saw, and there are many more photos in our August photo album.

Then 2 days later we went camping with our friends George and Carolyn.  Both Carolyn and I have an interest in rock collecting, so that was one of our main goals this trip.  It was also a time to relax at one of our favorite RV parks in Oregon.  The Junipers Reservoir RV Resort is near Lakeview, Oregon, and is on a large working cattle ranch.  http://www.junipersrv.com/  OK, just because I am giving you the links for some of these places doesn’t mean that you should go there!  I don’t want to go there next time and find out that all our friends have already reserved all the RV spaces!  It is OK to go there if you just want to tent camp.  ~wink~ 

When we got to the RV park we were told that the reservoir had just had a toxic blue-green algae bloom.  http://www.dec.ny.gov/chemical/77118.html  This particular algae bloom was deadly to their cattle, and 32 died within 72 hours.

We camped there 3 nights and on the first full day went to the small community of Davis Creek, California, where we picked up a map and registered to obtain obsidian.  We visited all 4 sites listed on the map and found some beautiful specimens.  The area has rainbow obsidian with blues and greens, and some pink at one site.  Now the challenge is to figure out how to cut and polish it into something really nice.

On the return to Bend/Salem, we stopped at the Cowboy Dinner Tree Restaurant near the community of Silver Lake.  It is a unique restaurant that serves only two types of meals, chicken, or beef.  The chicken meal is a whole, large, chicken.  The beef meal is a 26 – 30 oz top sirloin steak.  Both meals come with salad, bean soup, rolls, baked potato, and dessert, with your choice of ice tea, or strawberry lemonade.  Yes, they automatically bring doggy bags to the table near the end of the meal.

Now that we are back at my brother's home near Sisters, Oregon, there has been a forest fire about 8 miles away that we have been watching.  It is currently about 9,000 acres and is not close to being contained.  The sad part about this whole thing is that I think they could have put it out very quickly when it first started, but NO, they did not do much and now it is out of control.  This is after they have thrown probably well over 100 Borate Bombers at it not including water dropping helicopters and lots of man power and caterpillars.  They are now even using jets as Borate Bombers, including a DC10.  It really makes a person wonder what the people in charge really are trying to accomplish!  People have been evacuated from some homes near the fire.

Oh, did I mention “work”?  Well, this is a current photo of the Model A Roadster (doesn't look much different than last time, does it?), and the quilt that Harriet is making for me.

This doesn't show the running gear, chassis or engine, which are all on the other side of Bend at our friend Mike's shop.  Ben has been spending a lot of time there getting dirty and greasy, taking more things apart (and ordering more replacement parts)!  Meanwhile, Mike poured the babbitt for the main bearings, and is rebuilding the engine.  

Harriet got the binding sewn on, now she just needs to turn the binding to the back side and hand stitch it down.  That's the only thing that is hand-stitched on this quilt, so it takes a while!  

The August 2017 with more photos is ready for your enjoyment.

Until the next time Ben has time to put something together....
Your friends in smoky Central Oregon,
Ben & Harriet

PS.  Sam & Zoey are spending the summer in Baja with our friend Dalia.  Sam had an eye problem (dry eye?), but after some TLC by Dalia and our vet Gretel, (and lots of medication) he is doing much better.