East to West

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Once again, we have travelled from Eastern Oregon to the Pacific Ocean in a couple of days. We had to be in Salem on Tuesday to get our kitchen slide fixed. Our appointment was at 8 a.m. so we parked in their lot for the night.

But I get ahead of myself. Our trip from LaGrande, through the Blue Mountains was fantastic. We kept imagining what lewisclarkoregontrailthe people coming to Oregon on the wagon trails must of felt when they finally reached Oregon and saw nothing but desert! We have been following the trail since Stanley and some of the Lewis and Clark trails since Montana. We keep seeing these signs and it sends us back in time to when the forests were virgin forests and mountain men wandered the mountains.

The Columbia Gorge was beautiful. Fall colors weren’t happening yet. The river was busy as was the freeway! We keep seeing trucks with these wide loads and finally figured out that someone was getting a wind turbine. One truck could carry one blade of the machine. We also say a helicopter being towed among other farm machinery and automobile carriers. Then off in the distance was Mt. Hood standing at 11,000+feet. We decided to stop for lunch and Dale turned off on the Old Columbia Gorge Historical road. We had lunch at Horsetail Falls and had to continue on down this narrow, windy road past Multnomah Falls. Finally, we were able to get back on I-84 to Portland.


We arrived in Salem in time to get a spot at the dealership. We were shocked to see an almost empty lot where row upon row of RV once sat for sale. The depressed economy had hit Wagers. Dale and I tooled around town, had dinner at HomeTown Buffet. Wow! They are pricey now. But the food was good. We also found Wallace Park on the Willamette River and we sat for awhile reading and watching people play in the water. wallcepark

The next day, while the RV was getting worked on, we went to one of our favorite stores, Bi-Mart. We found a Garmin Nuvi Navigation on sale but this was a close out model so we decided we needed to do some research first. We knew we wanted one and after the last few months trying to find a phone booth with a phone book we were really thinking we needed one of these things. I had made a couple of calls to my son, who has a Garmin, and got his input! So we went to Costco. After stopping and asking for directions! They had a better garminmodel there, the 260 W, and it was $20 cheaper than the one on sale at Bi-Mart. I would show you the actual screen but Dale is busily over at his computer finding waypoints to download. Check out poifactory.com a great site.

After lunch we headed back to the dealership to pick up our rig. After looking at the slide we determined it looked the same as when we brought it in. The shop foreman got hot under the collar at our questions and the service manager explained to us the “band-aid” Carriage suggested. We got two different stories from these guys and left – not happy at their explanations or their work. As the Service Manager said to me when I told him we could have done what they did, “But then we wouldn’t have seen the SF get excited.” I guess to him we got our moneys worth ($271) that day. I doubt we will return to them to get anything fixed. Oh, we did give them a second chance after our first time there. Not again.

We headed to the coast, watching the rain clouds roll in. We stopped at Beverly State Park and they were full. I guess summer tourists are not done vacationing! We rolled on down the road to South Beach State Park and they were full except for 5 tent sites. We asked about overflow and couldn’t get in there until these unoccupied 5 tents sites were filled. I think Oregon needs to take a look at this rule. They lost a lot of RV business that day because of unoccupied 5 tent sites. So we headed south and stopped at a private RV park, McKinnleys, who had a boondocking area on Alsea mckinnleysBay. And we paid less than the state parks!

So here we sit for a couple of days. Hopefully, chores will get done and we get some much needed rest.


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