Ashland to Bend

posted in: Oregon Road Trip 2013 | 0

It was all about the rain yesterday, which made this sign an ironic emblem of the day.

I drove through some absolutely beautiful scenery.  Fortunately, I have a good imagination, because that’s the only way I could even remotely know how beautiful the scenery was.  It rained steadily throughout the drive.  I decided to go east on 66 to Klamath Falls and then north on 97 all the way to Bend, because the normal route would have duplicated most of the trip the other day to Crater Lake, and I wanted to see some different scenery.  Well, I didn’t see the same scenery or the different scenery.  The first half of the drive to Klamath Falls was up a mountain road with a lot of switchbacks and scenic overlooks, all of which overlooked a wall of white fog.

I detoured off the main road to go through Klamath Falls, but there wasn’t much to see.  I did stop at a little park where there was an interesting veterans memorial.  It had placards commemorating every war in the history of the USA, from the Revolutionary War right through to Iraq and Afghanistan.  The smaller wars were commemorated on one shared placard:

In the same park next to the veterans memorial was a train.

The drive north on 97 was a straight shot, so no twists and turns.  I think I went past some mountains.  I stopped for lunch at a roadside diner that was jam packed.  I asked the cashier as I was paying for my second breakfast (who can resist biscuits and gravy from a roadside diner?) and she said it was always like this on Sundays, but especially the last few weeks since hunting season started.

Then I stopped at the High Desert Museum.  It’s considered one of the area’s top attractions, and it was the best museum about the desert that I’ve ever been to.  Much of it was outside, and the rain added a special dimension: wetness.  They had a homestead exhibit:

They had river otters:

They had areas where they show how forest is maintained to prevent and control forest fires:

They had critters on exhibit:

They had art work by regional artists:

And they had dioramas:

From there I headed into downtown Bend and took a walk in the rain Drake Park along the Mirror Pond and the Deschutes River.  It’s a beautiful place to go for a walk, even in the rain.

Then I headed to the place I’m staying.  I have a big room with a deck overlooking the river.  Sadly, the rain made me think I wouldn’t get to enjoy the view much.  But this morning the sun is out!

I went back into Bend (about 15 minutes from where I’m staying) for a fabulous dinner at 900 Wall.  And then a great night of sleep.

But now the sun is out!  So I’m off to explore and enjoy.

Mileage yesterday: 235.

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