Archives for September 2014

Monday, Sept. 29, 2014 – Laundry Day

After the constant rain over the weekend, the spigot nearest to us was working well today, so I put a long hose on it and managed to get almost ¾ of a tank of fresh water, which I promptly used to do four loads of laundry under a very breezy, sunny, quick drying day. Eventually the hose didn’t have enough pressure to fill up the tank, but at least I managed to get the job done! Hubby, meanwhile, ran down into town for gas and groceries to keep us going for the rest of the week, and to reconnoiter our exit route for whenever we leave. It’s forecast to be quite chilly until Thursday, then warming up nicely for the weekend, so we’re considering staying until next Monday, since we have all that we need here, and it’s free, and the only downside has been the very cold nights, with even a freeze warning for the next few nights. Just need to bundle up and keep warm!

Sunday, Sept. 28, 2014 – Football and Blog Catchup Day

It rained all night, we had buckets of water, and even the rain barrel had a lot of water in it, though not as much as I thought it would, probably because it has a leak in it somewhere, another job for Hubby to look at when he has some time and energy. We’re both feeling a lot more rested, finally, and we haven’t seen a soul up here since the first day! Very quiet here, just what we need for recharge out batteries. Had to do a water run, but before I did, I checked the spigot that was closest to us, and YEAH, it worked! Instead of having to run the trailer around, filling the rain barrel, then sump pumping it into the RV, all I had to do was string out enough hose (which, fortunately, we had) to reach from the spigot to the RV. Yeah! That means I can get some laundry done, as the forecast is sunny for the rest of the week. Hubby will have to run down to Cedarville tomorrow for more gas for the generator, but we’ve now solved all our problems, and I’m starting to really like this place. Won’t be much dust after all the rain, so now I’m looking forward to riding here, too, maybe later in the week when it warms up. That’s the only drawback here at this time of the year, it’s a bit chilly, in the low 40’s, even upper 30’s during the night, while it’s 10 degrees warmer in the valley. No worries, though, we’re keeping warm, and the forecast is for upper 60’s later in the week. Not sure how long we’ll be staying, depend on the progress of the weather. Don’t want to miss our window going south, as we do need to spend some time in the Reno area, getting mail and getting the van fixed, if possible.

Saturday, Sept. 27, 2014 – More Rest, Rain, Movie Day!

Indeed, it rained last night, and most of the day today, so we had several full buckets, though my rain barrel got turned over in the wind. We decided to make it a rainy movie day, since we recorded a whole lot of stuff and just haven’t been able to run them down very much, particularly with all the new series stuff we’re watching. Great, relaxing day, and my back is feeling much better, thank you.

Friday, Sept. 26, 2014 – Recovery Day from Wrenched Back, with Some Overnight Rain

Woke up with tremendous back pain, proving I was right that I wrenched my back yesterday. Took some ibuprofen and relaxed in my recliner most of the day to rest it. Hubby, thankfully, was feeling well enough to do my chores, with all his recent injuries in abatement, yeah! Expecting some rain tonight, so we put out all the buckets and rain barrels under the gutters on the RV, with a bit of luck, it will save us from having to do the water run for an extra day or two.

Thursday, Sept. 25, 2014 – Rest Day and Computer Day

Another day of rest and computer work. When we fed the horses in the evening, I tried to carry an extra heavy hay bag, and I have the feeling it’s going to become a problem, but you know how that goes… I think it might hurt tomorrow, but we’ll see.

Wednesday, Sept. 24, 2014 – Rest Day

Did some work on my computer, but otherwise did little else but try to get caught up on some computer work that I’ve let go because of all our running around, thankful I have a good enough signal to get onto the internet. Not super speedy, but at least it’s there!

Tuesday, Sept. 23, 2014 – Travel to Pepperdine Horse Camp

After having left our $5 camping fee in the iron ranger at the other campground, we headed out for California, winding our way back through Oregon, then down into California, where the moment we crossed the border it became an agricultural dream. We passed thousands of acres of green fields dozens of semis filled with hay and alfalfa, and lots of other grasses and similar crops. We arrived in Alturas, where we got gas, groceries and liquor, stopping for a couple of bales of hay (at a whopping $22 for a grass/alfalfa mix and $20 for grass hay, albeit it 3-string, 110 pound bales) because Clio just won't eat the stuff I bought up in Bellingham, and has started to lose weight because of it, also a stop at the ranger station where they didn't have anything even remotely like a trail map, but did let me know that there is only really one linear trail that runs from one end of the forest to the other, and anything off that trail would be treacherous. We finally headed out to the country road that would get us there, and it turned into dirt with seven miles to go before the horse camp. The road wasn't too bad, having been graded fairly recently, but it was pretty twisty, and had tow one-lane bridges, at which, naturally, I ran into a horse trailer coming from the other direction at the same moment, so I had to back up to give him room to come across. We finally reached the turnoff to Pepperdine Horse Camp, turning by a couple of large pieces of equipment that were evidently doing some kind of road or forest work. We managed to find the campground with no problem as there was good signage, and circled around to find a good spot. There was a spigot by the day parking area, another by the group camping area, and a third up near the individual camping area. Unfortunately, the top one, which was nearest to our camping site, didn't have any water coming out of it, so I stopped to fill up at the lower spigot while Hubby reconnoitered which site would give him the best chance at a satellite signal. I was disappointed in the water situation, but discovered to my delight that I was actually able to get a good enough cell phone signal for both calls and internet!! I had lost the signal miles back, but I guess we climbed close enough to the top of the mountain to clear the obstacles. Eventually, Hubby managed to get a satellite signal, while I ran back down to fill up a rain barrel in the back of the horse trailer for the horses. We were so tired from the drive, I couldn't wait to settle down. It's tough to move every single day, and we hoped that we could settle down here for a spell, though being at almost 7000 feet, the temps were definitely a consideration. We knew nights would be cool, just not sure how cool, we'll have to wait and see. The water situation wasn't promising, because I had hoped to get some laundry done, and the prospect of having to fill a water barrel then sump pump it into the RV for that wasn't particularly attractive. We put both horses in one of the large corrals, though after trying to feed them separately without success, we ended up moving to separate corrals, giving them lots of space, but no shared warmth. We put on their warm blankets just to be on the safe side. Eventually, we finally settled down for the evening, already getting dark by the time we finished all our chores, having seen only one car with a couple and a dog come into the parking area. Otherwise, looks like it will be quiet here, and the best part, it's free!

Monday, Sept. 22, 2014 – Travel to Hyatt Lake, Van Accident

All packed up and departed at a good time, as we have a little farther to go today. Although I've had a strange feeling about going to Hyatt Lake, mostly because it took us further west, and we had recently changed our plans and decided to head straight for Nevada to get it done (it will make # 50 for horseback riding, and #48 for the horses!), and even suggested to Hubby that maybe we should skip it at head straight for Pepperdine in California, we decided it was too far and headed for Hyatt Lake anyway. Rather than taking a direct though backwoods route, we headed for Klamath Falls, as we had several stops to make. Thanks to, I found a place with cheap gas before we go to the city, then we went to a country store to pick up some horse feed and to get propane. It was kind of strange, you had to find a card for what you wanted, then take it to the cashier, then drive through a barn where they loaded you up. That's when the trouble started. They had a very strange parking lot, and when Hubby pulled out of the barn, there was someone blocking his exit to the left, so he turned right, thinking it would swing around back to the main road, but it didn't. It dead-ended, and on a single lane so narrow, he couldn't find anyplace to turn around. In truth, Hubby is not the best at backing and turning with a trailer, so he tried to turn around using a driveway, and then got close to some trees that he though would bend a bit, but then he apparently brushed up again a stiff branch that had been cut back and was hidden in the fir tree, and suddenly the branch popped through the window in the side door of the van. Not the passenger window, but the side door that opens into the side of the van. When he tried to get out, he evidently got caught again somehow, and broke the window of the other side door, so that both windows of both swing out side doors were shattered. Poor Billy leaped into Hubby's lap, and Marina was covered in glass when he finally made it back to the store. Meanwhile, I was getting propane, and was getting a bit annoyed because the guy filling my tanks started asking me about their certification (the tanks are only two years old!), and then, without asking, stuck a warning label on the side of one of my tanks! I told him it wasn't necessary, that I was fully aware that propane was flammable, but he said it wasn't for me, but for anyone else that might be near my RV! I guess it escaped him that we had a cover over the tanks anyway, so his silly label wouldn't be seen, and frankly, anyone who doesn't know that propane is hazardous shouldn't bring their stupidity anywhere near me or my RV. Anyway, I remarked that I would just take it off anyway, so he refrained from putting one on the second tank. Right around then, Hubby showed up and brought me around the van to show me the damage he had done. I OMG'd for a few minutes before facing the reality, then we pulled out of the way and spent a few minutes uncovering Marina from the glass (thank goodness she's too infirmed to move very much, or she might have hurt herself) and soon were on our way. Lots of fresh air in the van! After our final stop at Walmart, we headed east to Hyatt Lake, through some twisty roads, though not too bad, that were paved all the way to the entrance to the "horse camp," which turned out to be not much. We had stopped at the dump to fill up with fresh water for the RV, but the lake was so low from the years of drought the area has been suffering, that we couldn't get anywhere near it. None of the sites were even close to level, and the only place we could park with any hope of a satellite signal was almost to the old waterline, which put us a LONG way from the horse corrals, and all uphill. After struggling for a while trying to get the satellite set up, Hubby gave up, saying there were too many trees in the way. We decided to use water from the trailer for the horses, since we didn't really want to go all the way back to the dump with a rain barrel after this long hard day, though the ranger that came by said we could come by the administration building, but that was almost as far. During the evening, we discussed out options, because this place was just going to be too hard to live in, what with running back a couple miles for water, then having to lug it uphill, not have TV and so on, so we made the decision to head straight to Pepperdine in the Warner Mountain Wilderness on the California border with Nevada. Although that made it pretty much a complete waste of time coming here, at least we saw it, and gave ourselves the time we needed to regroup before heading off into the mountains.

Sunday, Sept. 21, 2014 – Visit to Crater Lake

As I mentioned the other day, my purpose for coming to Collier Memorial was to visit Crater Lake National Park, which is only about 25 miles from here, so after a late breakfast and a few chores, Hubby and I packed into the van, invited little Billy to come with us, and headed out for our side trip. Passing through a long stretch of a flat, farm-filled valley, it didn't take long to reach the edge of the forest, and then the national park. We stopped at the visitor center, which was really just a gift shop, and since it didn't have any kind of extensive exhibits other than one diorama of the lake, we jumped back in the van and proceed to make our way around the Rim Road. We made a brief stop at the main village area and got a cup of coffee, and took a walk to our first great view of Crater Lake. For some reason, I had always believed Crater Lake had been formed by an asteroid, but in fact it had been a volcano that blew it's top off about 7700 years ago, then settled into a caldera and filled with snow melt and rainwater, making it the deepest lake in North America, and one of the purest in the world. We took some great pictures, especially when we first arrived, because it was so calm on the lake it reflected the surrounding walls like a perfect mirror, so gorgeous! From there we drove the entire perimeter road around the lake, taking a few side spurs for even more fascinating terrain. At one spot there was a trail, so I took Billy and we walked the half mile loop to see a little island outcropping, oddly similar to the one we saw in Alaska, that also looked like a ship under full sail. It was a lovely day, and the views were so stunning! We have really seen some stuff over the years, and it's amazing there's always something more around every turn! Very glad we came, weather was perfect, crowds were down considerably from what it must be like during the summer, and really had a great day! Got back to camp, did a little preparation for tomorrow's departure, and relaxed for the evening.

Saturday, Sept. 20, 2014 – Ride Day to Spring Creek Head

With beautiful weather abounding, we saddled up the horses after breakfast and headed out on the nearest forest road. We were completely unable to find trail maps, as the State Park didn't really have any trails, and bordered the National Forest, which didn't service the horse camp, and I didn't find a ranger station nearby to try to pick up a map of the trails. Of course, they had forest road maps you can buy, but you still have to find a ranger station to do that. In any event, I had traced a trail from Google Earth on the visible forest roads, downloaded it to my GPS and hoped for the best. Our destination was the head of Spring Creek, which, down by the logging museum was a wide and fast-running river, but apparently it's origin springs straight out of the ground a couple of miles up the road. We headed out, and unfortunately, the roads were as dusty as the trails we left at the last campground, so we had to wear our bandanas pretty much the whole way. The road went right where I had anticipated, then I thought I saw a shortcut, so we took that, but it led us astray after a while, so we retraced our steps back to the road until we came to a day use area along a sort of small lake, where apparently the creek came out of the spring. It was crowded, not surprisingly, I guess, since it was a beautiful Saturday, and we asked a few people if the trail along the creek went back down to Collier Park, and each one we asked said either they thought so, or definitely yes, so we started south along the creek. That didn't last long, because the trail most definitely did NOT go anywhere, and after stumbling over one too many downed logs, we turned around and went back. We round another shortcut that put us back on another road that followed a utility line, which we figured would lead us back to the park, but after quite a ways, it dead ended at private property. We cut across some more property, which turned out to be private as well, but couldn't get back to the forest road because the terrain was just too tough, so we ended up retracing our steps again, until I finally found a way back to the main road and heading back to camp. We had only a couple of chances to canter, and unfortunately Hubby's cinch got loose a bit, not enough to take a fall, thank goodness, but we had to stop and re-cinch Clio's saddle. She got a lot of dust in her face today, because of the condition of the mostly sandy roads, and we were all glad to get back to camp, our short planned 6 mile ride turning into an 11 mile adventure. Fortunately, Hubby took it all in stride, and though he was tired (as was I), he didn't hurt too much, except for his foot a bit. We put the horses away and relaxed the rest of the day.