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Preview: Bend Oregon ... and a little beyond!

Bend Oregon ... and way beyond!



Welcome to Bend Oregon and its surrounding areas. A place of extremes. Poverty and wealth; heat and cold; green and brown; forward and backward; wild and domestic. One of the US's best kept secrets ... well, it used to be! "Come get it while it's hot!" Ev



Updated: 2016-05-20T02:21:02.896-07:00

 



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2011-11-05T13:07:47.924-07:00

Posted some more pics at:


See you there!



New Blog

2011-10-30T05:01:59.314-07:00

I have decided Kiribati needs it's own blog .... so I am continuing my blog about Kiribati at:

Hope you will join me ...

Tia boo



Abaiang Atoll

2011-10-27T23:24:22.985-07:00

(image)
Abaiang Atoll, about 40 km north of Tarawa
We landed and stayed at St Joseph's Catholic Boarding School.
(image)
St Joseph's classroom
Bloody kids still have a problem packing up at the end of the week!
But, they can be excused ... a whole boat load of I-Matangs are coming and there is going to be a big botaki on Saturday night!
(image)
I-Kiribati kids
Kids are kids ... no matter where they come from!
They love to have their pictures taken!
(image)
Kids playing on the lagoon
Can you just imagine what Australian and US parents would be saying if these were their kids?
(image)
Maneaba
The traditional village meeting place.
This one is especially huge!

Oh, so many beautiful places ... so little time!



In the beginning ....

2011-10-17T12:40:28.029-07:00

I have finally arrived on Tarawa, in the country of Kiribati, straddling the equator in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. According to legends, it is the centre of the universe ... and I am not so sure I doubt that. Google Earth can give you a good view.33 atolls, 100,000 people .... and it may be the first country to disappear due to climate change and rising sea levels ... and there are still people that want to deny it's happening. Come here ... it is happening.Whether you believe human activity contributes to climate change or not ... if there is even the slightest chance it does ... don't you have an obligation to do your part to reduce your possible impact? Come here ... and see the beautiful people and country you may be destroying.In the following 2 years, while I complete my volunteer assignment with Australian Volunteers International, I hope to show you something about this wonderful place. Maybe, then, you will feel compelled to care more about how your lifestyle choices affect the rest of the planet... because they do.From the air, Tarawa can be seen as a narrow (average width is 400 metres) string of atolls. Inside the ring of coral atolls is the lagoon, outside is the open ocean.The average elevation of the country is less than 2 metres about sea level.The ring of atolls is broken by a series of channels that allow the lagoon to be filled and emptied by the rising and falling tides. Makes it more challenging to get from one end of the atoll to the other ... man-made causeways have been built to enable easier movement ... but tend to trap pollutants in the lagoon, creating some of the highest counts of e-coli bacteria in the natural world.Every action has a consequence.[...]



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2011-09-24T17:43:15.230-07:00

Only 2 weeks until departure for Kiribati ... hope my new waterproof camera arrives before then!



Log House Update

2011-09-14T08:02:34.541-07:00

Wow ... been over a year since my last post ... have done too many things to include here, except the progress I made on the log house.

Here are a few of the latest photos:

(image)
The outside has been stained and sealed ...
all ready for winter!

(image)
The inside has been insulated from head ...

(image)
to toe ...

(image)
And from the road ... very nice!

Now, for the next 2 years I'll be volunteering
on the island of Tarawa in the country of Kiribati ...
that's in the middle of the Pacific Ocean!
Check it out on Google Earth ...
my house is just to the west of the Parliament building!
I'll leave that up to you to find.
I hope to be blogging from there ... in about a month.



Working With Wood

2010-03-28T20:28:29.830-07:00

Here is a little project I started last summer (2009) before I left for Texas.
A birthday present for the granddaughter.

(image)
Back
(image)
Front

Maybe I'll get it finished this summer!
Just have to work out how to make and attach the lid!



Log Houses and Texas

2009-08-05T22:56:09.131-07:00

Boy! It sure has been a while since my last posting!
As you can see, I've been a bit busy!
Here's the front of the house I'm building.
(image)
And, here's the back!
Currently in the middle of staining ... you can see the darker color on the far right of the picture.
First had to scrub the whole outside of the house with a brush and bleach!
That was fun! Not!
Was easier than I thought it would be, though.
(image)
Now it's off on a new venture ...
Temporarily moving to Georgetown, Texas to take up a
teaching position at a new school.
So it looks like I'll have to delve into my archives to keep posting here.

If I start a blog for Georgetown I'll link it to here.
Cheers!





Tuesday ... Hit the Slopes!

2009-04-09T21:42:43.215-07:00

Always best to ski with good friends!
Jeanette and Alan certainly fit that bill!
(image) The day was soooo sunny!
(image)
Who wouldn't be happy heading up this slope!
(image) Mt Bachelor Northwes Express chair ...
found on the Outback side of the mountain!



Monday ... 70+F (20C)

2009-04-08T01:00:29.315-07:00

What would you do?
What else! Grab a couple good friends and
spend the afternoon riding!
(image) (image) (image) Destination: Mitchell, Oregon
(image) Actually, Mitchell is where I watched Neil Armstrong take
those first steps on the moon on July 20, 1969.
My god! That was 40 years ago while on a
university summer camp!



Winter

2009-04-03T07:55:42.414-07:00

(image) The Deschutes River at Bend in February ...



Winter is Back!

2009-01-27T11:35:52.385-08:00

Thought I'd share with you the ice on my window this morning ...
it was a balmy 9F when I got up ...

(image)



Memories!

2009-01-21T08:43:12.905-08:00

Talk about bringing back old memories!
Hoodoo Ski Area ... a quaint little place about
half way between Salem and Bend on the summit of Santiam Pass.
The place where I learned to ski with Tom,
one of my university room mates, way back in 1966!


That's 3 Fingered Jack in the background.
The pioneers were so colorful when
they named mountains!
Or maybe they were just a bit drunk from all the serenity!
(image) Of course it has changes a bit since then ... new lodge ...
(image) some new lifts ... no more rope tow!

As you can see from the blue skies,
the weather has been unseasonably nice!
So, last Saturday I met the family there for a
little romp in the snow.
An hour or so on the sledding hill was just the ticket!(image) Grandson, Steven, had fun!
He's getting so tall!
(image) Granddaughter, Emily, had a blast!
Think she'll be snowboarding soon!



Happy Holidays

2008-12-24T09:36:24.160-08:00

Just a quick Holiday Greetings to all ...
(image) May you be safe and have a prosperous 2009.



Still here!

2008-11-04T23:06:12.104-08:00

Progress is being made, but the snow has arrived! It is still early so it should melt and more sunny days are common ... hope "common" still prevails!
(image) I've hired a builder to try to help get the roof on before it snows!
Guess that didn't work!
This morning I woke up to about 6 inches of new snow!
(image) The builder did manage to get the rest of the sheeting on the roof.
As soon as the porch is on we can start putting on the roofing.

Besides snow, I only had one other set-back this week.
Seems somebody put the water pipe right where I thought a nice tree would go!

New president ... new hope!
Now looking forward to the future of the USA ...
especially on the world stage.
Go Obama!



I've been busy! Really busy!

2008-09-30T18:09:17.618-07:00

Sorry I've been so lax in keeping up with my blog ... but I HAVE been busy!
Really!
Here's what I've been up to ... this is my "old" front yard.
(image)

I am currently in the middle of building a log house and trying desperately to get the roof on before it snows!

It's going to be a tight race! I'll try to keep you posted.




July 4th

2008-12-08T22:30:39.124-08:00

Happy 4th of July!
Couldn't let a posting go by without trying to capture a few fireworks!(image)
There are always the local street scenes, with kids having
an exciting evening ... staying up late, playing with fire ...
and all in the middle of the street!
What more could a kid want?

(image) Of course, the adults are waiting for the big one!
Here's a shot of the annual fireworks atop
Pilot Butte, as seen from across town.
At least there were no fires on the side of the butte this year!




Brothers, Oregon

2008-12-08T22:30:39.899-08:00

One Sunday, not long ago, the weather was so nice I just couldn't stay home and tackle those jobs I'd put off from other days when the weather was so nice I couldn't stay home!The sky was so clear I ventured into Bend and up Pilot Butte to have a look.I think this was the best Mt Hood had looked in a long time.Mt Hood is Oregon's highest peak at 11,237 feet, 3,426 m and is home of Timberline Lodge, Mt Hood Meadows Ski Resort, several other ski areas and numerous lakes and hiking trails.It is about 45 miles east of Portland and, being a volcano, last erupted about 180 years ago.Once I had absorbed as much of the view as I could handle, I decided to visit my friends Jeanette and Alan (seen skiing in previous postings).Since they are also motorcycle enthusiasts, and I was on my Harley, we decided to go for a little ride.Where we ended up after a couple hours of wandering around the country side, was a little town on Highway 20 about 45 miles east of Bend, called Brothers.Brothers Stage Stop is about the only business operating and afforded us a little lunch. You can see it is a great spot for multitasking! Saloon, Post Office, Cafe and ...Jail? Think that was just for show!Guess it could be handy having the jail next to the saloon!I thought the signs on the bathrooms were quite interesting."Customer Use Only"Like, who else is going to be here?That's Jeanette and Alan availing themselves of the shade. After lunch and a little look around, it was time to hit the road back to Bend.That's the Three Sisters straight ahead!Is it safe to come between sisters and brothers?It was a nice way to spend an afternoon.I'll show you the other bits of local interest in another posting ...You might have to remind me![...]



Early Morning On The High Desert

2008-12-08T22:30:40.349-08:00

A couple weeks ago I managed to drag myself out of bed
early enough to catch the sun rising on the mountains.(image) The light was somewhat disappointing.
Not as much color as I had hoped for. (image) The rising mist is from the Little Deschutes River.
It was beautiful ... but hard to capture.(image) When I managed to finally see some color on the vegetation,
the sky became washed out.
Looks like I'll have to get up early again ... there is a lot of smoke in the sky at the moment from the fires in California.
Maybe it will be worth getting up early for tomorrow's sunrise!



Some Skimmers Do Make It!

2008-12-08T22:30:40.978-08:00

Not all skimmers failed to make the distance!
(image) Although it wasn't all smooth sailing ... or skimming!
(image) Nice recovery!
(image)
(image) Is that a "Bugwiser" I see?
(image) Oh ya!(image) A good time was had by all!



Pond Skimming!

2008-12-08T22:30:41.701-08:00

A few weeks ago, Harley and I headed off to Mt Bachelor
to watch the events signifying the closing of the ski season.
It was a beautiful day ...
a week or two later we had freezing temperatures and more snow!
The new road is super! Harley loved the wind in his ... well, what ever
the wind blew through!
(image)
The main event is something called "Pond Skimming".
Participants snowboard or ski down a small slope and
try to make it across a pond of ice cold water!
(image)
(image)
(image)
(image)
Not many make it!



More Signs of Spring

2008-12-08T22:30:41.916-08:00

The deer have returned!(image)

As soon as the snow melts and the grass sprouts, different grazing animals appear.
Sadly, over the past 3 years, the number of returning deer seems to be reduced by half each year.
When I first moved here in 2006, there was a herd of about 14 deer that frequented my front yard.
Last year there were 7 and this year I have only seen 3.
The sad cost of "progress", I guess.
Too bad some land can't be set aside for what people love about this place ...
do we need to fill every available space with houses?
How about a wildlife corridor?
Anybody heard of "nature deficit disorder"? Try "Googling" it.

One good sign I did see, however, was a herd of elk nearby.(image) It was late in the evening so photographic opportunities were limited.
Motorcyclist have to be extremely careful in elk crossing areas.
"Elk are big" is a warning sign along one busy stretch of road ...
and they are!




You know spring is close when ...

2008-12-08T22:30:42.254-08:00

Red Tailed hawks, looking for food, are commonly seen
circling in the sky.

(image) (image) (image)

Also, check out the link to our local "eaglecam"
at the top of the list on the right!
It's pretty amazing ... and, another sign of spring!




You know spring is close when ...

2008-12-08T22:30:42.475-08:00

(image)

your yard is white in the morning ...

(image)

and green in the afternoon!




Dog Sled Trips

2008-12-08T22:30:42.804-08:00

Need something else to do in the winter?
How about a scenic ride in a dog sled?
(image)
And, why not make it even more exciting ... go with a musher who is legally blind!

Rachael Scdoris is a 20 year old local girl who competed in the Iditarod, a race between Anchorage and Nome, Alaska ... a mere 1,100 or so miles. It's easy to find info about it on the Internet.
Being legally blind is an additional challenge to this gruelling event.
Rachael and her dog team didn't finish the race but completed nearly 1000 miles before deciding her dogs were suffering too much and would not be able to make it the last 100 miles.
Nice to see the dogs are well looked after.
Well done, Rachael!

Rachael and her dad run dog sled trips at Mt Bachelor on the weekends.

You can't see much from within the tree-lined trails, but the experience has to be worth it
... if you don't mind looking up a dog's bum the whole way!

(image) The dogs they use are some of the nicest dogs I've seen.
I know several people who own "retired" Scdoris dogs and they all have the most gentle nature.
Might have to get one myself one day.