Archive for September, 2013

Oregon Roadtrip Part 4

September 3, 2013

If you haven’t been to Bend and you like the outdoors, you my friend are missing out.  During the summer you find road cyclists everywhere.  The trails of which there are many have happy hikers, and the lakes have happy campers and pups.  During the winter (which will be another post later in the year) you have skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, cross country skiing, etc etc.

While in Bend I went on a small and short group bike ride to an outdoor movie, and went for a few hikes.

Free hiking and camping in the backcountry.  I went along this trail which featured 3 lakes.

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I also found Elk Lake which provides a beautiful view, a beach to swim and watch kids collect crawdads.

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Another short hike I did was along the Paddle Trail.  It provided beautiful views and very aggressive mosquitos- resulting in over 40 bites.

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Oregon Roadtrip Part 3

September 2, 2013

After leaving the farm I headed north west to the northern most part of the Oregon Coast- Astoria.

I wanted to go to Astoria because I am a huge Goonies fan and it felt like starting at the top would make the most sense.

In Astoria is the best fish and chips- Bowpickers, a boat parked on a hill across from the Maritime Museum.  The looong line was well worth the wait.

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My plan was the camp and bike around Fort Stevens State Park, an incredible place with a network of bike trails through spruce and hemlocks, and even a shipwreck.  But with summer still busy it’s camping spots were full so I headed south.  I ended up in Cannon Beach, a place I pulled off randomly to, which ended up being the place to stop- a beautiful beach full of sand dollars, art galleries, and lots of happy people!

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I stayed in Cannon Beach for the night, and then traveled south visiting the Tillamook Cheese Factory- yum to the 3 year aged white cheddar; and the Yaguina Head Lighthouse.  Then I was off to Bend!

Oregon Roadtrip Part 2

September 2, 2013

WWOOFing has led to incredible experiences for me.  In my two experiences I have met incredible hosts who have become friends, learned about running farms for profit, and for sustainability and to be less reliant on the food culture in the US, and have challenged myself by leaving everything I know daily behind for a new way of living.

Nagdeo Farm in Gresham Oregon felt like a totally different world even though it is just a bike ride to the town of Gresham and a 30 minute car ride to Portland.

If you know me you know how much my life is focused around planning, schedules, and the need to know.  When I go into a unique experience I am calmed by understanding what is expected of me, and how that relates to the bigger picture.  This is not how Nadgeo Farm is.  In contrast I had a few tasks to do during the day, but what I put in and got out of the experience was up to me (and the schedule of those around me).  The need to take care of oneself after a bad night sleep for example would take precedence over putting in physical work the next day.  Simply put, taking care of yourself takes precedence over everything else.

It took me a week to understand that, and to start to do the same.  I was concerned at first that I wouldn’t learn what I wanted to learn- farming.  But thankfully I did, alongside another way of living.

This is of of my hosts Tracy watering the garden area of the farm.

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While at Nagdeo I learned how to make planting beds and plant seeds and seedlings.  This is some of the completed beds, and some sweet pigs I was in change of bringing water too.

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One of the draws of Nagdeo Farm was all their animals- horses, goats, pigs, alpacas, a sheep, ducks, and a chicken.  My favorite was the super friendly goats.  Now I know I want chickens and goats when I have property.

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I plan to return to the farm and hopefully spend some more significant time there.  Hopefully with my move to Oregon in 2014 I will be able to visit often and get a better understanding of how to live a lifestyle that could be really beneficial to me physically and mentally.