was another stellar weather day, so I thought I've drive out to
Crater Lake to see how much it had changed since I was last there
in all the snow. I got an earlier start than usual, knew I had plenty
of time, so I started off on the back roads to get to the main road
to Crater Lake. I had noticed before that there are lots of orchards
on this road and wanted to get pictures of the pear trees in their
current naked state and then go back when they're covered in buds
Creek bridge was built "about 1881."
before I even got to the main road, I saw a "detour" I
couldn't resist. I saw a sign pointing down a road to the right
saying there was a historic covered bridge down there. Although
it was only 5 miles through a little town I'd never heard of called
Lake Creek, it was a twisty narrow road. Don't ask me why, but I
just LOVE covered bridges.
near the bridge, I noticed a really nice ranch house with a for
sale sign in front. I thought - "wow, if I had to give up RVing,
THIS would be a place I could be happy settling into." It was
such a nice pastoral scene with a precious horse & little donkey
across the road, that I took a couple of pictures of it.
was leaving the area, a woman starting driving up the driveway and
I waved to her. She stopped and after I introduced myself, she gave
her name as Morah. She said she usually introduces herself as "Mo"
but after being confronted with such a beautiful name as Malia,
she decided to go with her "real" name. That was just
the beginning of our giggling together, and we ended up visiting
for quite a while. She and her family have been tenants of the house
for about 13 years. I remarked she must be unhappy about having
to leave such a gorgeous place when it sells, but she just smiled
and shrugged, saying something like "change is a good thing,
even if we don't think so at the time." We then got into this
whole conversation about such esoteric thoughts, laughing and sharing
examples of such blessings in our lives that we weren't so sure
weren't curses at the time. She
was such a neat lady and our little talk and her sweet smile reminded
me how we are taken care of by the universe even when we think things
really aren't going our way.
pointed me to a nice little park I wouldn't have seen if not for
her directions and after that, I headed back to the main road still
thinking I might have time to make it to Crater Lake. But then I
stopped at the market in Lake Creek for a snack and got to talking
to Mike, who was running the store there. I introduced myself to
him as a fulltime RVer exploring the area.
said I should go across the street to the historical society and
meet its director, Kathy, as he knew we'd enjoy each other. He was
right - she was a sweet lady with the perfect job because you could
tell she loved it. Her family has been here since the 1800's and
she took me all through the little historical society exhibits telling
me about the area, and loaded me down with brochures and info she
thought I'd like. I think she could tell from my accent that I'd
be interested in the recreation of a civil war skirmish, the "Battle
of Lake Creek," so she invited me to that costumed reenactment
which takes place in June. I didn't even know Oregon had any part
in that war!
next to the market was the town's fire station and they had an old-timey
fire engine out front. I decided to take a picture of it to send
one of my cyber-buddies, a retired fire captain. When the volunteer
firefighters got curious about what I was doing and came outside,
I told them about my mission and my friend. I then asked the female
if she would take a picture of me with the 2 cute male firefighters
to make my friends at home jealous. They all laughed, then told
me about some other places to get great pictures from. See pic of
Mt. McLoughlin below.
McLoughlin as seen from the fire station in Lake Creek
McLoughlin as seen from road to Lake of the Woods Resort. It was
a beautiful warm sunny day, but snow was still clinging to the water's
also asked if I had gone to the "Cowboy Church." I
said I had seen the sign to it off the main road, but didn't
know if it was really open to the public. He said it's not always
open, but there was a meeting going on there now, but they were
on a break and I should go up and tell them Mike sent me. So
I drove up the path to the church, drooling at the views of
Mt. McLoughlin all the way.
I arrived, there were people sitting outside, so I told them I
was the ultimate tourist and Mike told me I shouldn't miss the
ultimate attraction of the area, the Cowboy Church. They laughed
as I asked if I could take some pictures and they said, "sure
- shoot away."
people were so informal, nice and friendly (as cowboys should
be) and asked me to join them for their weekly service that begins
each Saturday at 5:00 with a free BBQ dinner. They stressed how
casual it all is and how the music is good 'ole "cowboy gospel"
and they just have a blast as they thank the creator who made
such beauty as that surrounding them. The timing wasn't right
for today, but I plan to join them in that thanksgiving before
leaving this area!
by the time I got through with all of these little unexpected delightful
detours, I made it only as far as Klamath Falls, which is only about
82 miles from where I started at 9:30 in the morning. I realized I'd
never make it back before sunset if I went on to Crater Lake, so decided
to just head back home slowly, taking the back roads through some
National Forest roads. As warm as the weather had been, the road was
clear, but the snow was still not finished with the upper forested
part of Oregon, anyway, and I really enjoyed the contrast once again.
I stopped several times just to listen to the blissful silence of
the snow covered forest floor.
are the kind of days that make not meeting your original "destination"
worthwhile and when you truly learn that "The Journey IS