Friday, January 22, 2010

Bend, Oregon a Road Trip

 I had occasion recently to take a road trip to Bend, Oregon. If you've been there, you already know how scenic the region is. I had been through here before, but it was more than 25 years ago, so memories weren't  so vivid any more. I started by driving from the Bay Area to Carson City to hook up with my brother who would share the rest of the trip with me. Now, I love the Bay Area and you absolutely can not beat the mild Mediterranean climate, but I grew up in the high desert of Northern Nevada and those wide open spaces still have a special appeal to me. So many people look at these landscapes and fail to see the amazing character , colors and textures. I'd be interested to know what you think.

The next four pics were taken on Hwy 395, Northbound from Reno...

It's not just the landscapes that have character around here. The old barns and farm houses always make me think about the sturdy folks who lived and worked in this challenging environment without the modern conveniences and tools we enjoy today.

Thompson Peak in the distance, the Litchfield water tower and the wide open view as we descend toward Ravendale. It was around here where we saw a massive Golden Eagle sitting on a telephone pole, but I wasn't quick enough to get his picture.

The "Most Likely Cafe" in scenic Likely, CA. My brother Pat & I had lunch & homemade pie here with our dad 33 & 1/2 years ago while on a fishing trip. You know we had to stop for lunch today. The town consists of about 5 or 6 houses, a few mobile homes, the cafe and a small general store. If you ever pass this way, The Most Likely Cafe is worth the stop.

The roaring metropolis of Alturas, CA.

More beautiful desert scenes between Alturas & Tulelake, CA. It was along this stretch that we saw a Bald Eagle on an island in a pond about a 1/4 mile off the highway.

We were digging this long-range view of Mt. Shasta, approximately 60 miles in the distance. At over 14,000 feet, it looked like a ghost mountain looming way out there.

Merrill, OR

More scenic farm/ranchland just North of Klamath Falls, OR and the view of Mt. McLoughlin across the frozen waters of Upper Klamath Lake. The iced over lake and snow on the banks are leftovers from the severe cold snap in the middle of December. While we were busy whining about low temps in the mid-twenties, this region was just wishing for high temps above zero.

A very large hawk flying over the highway as seen through the sunroof and a view of Mt. Thielson, another of the many extinct volcanoes in this region.

My one and only picture from downtown Bend. This is the Deschutes river winding through the heart of town. I love the nice parks all along the river around here. The locals told us how this area really hops in the summer time and I can see why. The downtown are was very clean and very lively. We were pleased to see only one empty shop in the whole downtown area of a dozen or so blocks.

Just a couple shots from the return trip; one of the two Bald Eagles we saw roosting in a grove of trees in bustling Likely, CA and a stormy sunset over Susanville. I really must get a camera with more zoom capability, these eagles were only about 100 yards off the road and this was as much zoom as my little camera could muster. I see things like this so seldom, I really need to be able to reach out and capture them.

I hope you enjoyed riding through the high desert with the Moore Brothers. Be sure to subscribe so you can join us as we trip around, having fun and taking pics as we go.


  1. hey matt! awesome looking road trip & your pics are great! you mention "sunroof"... does this mean you didn't take the old blue bomber out on this one? joel & i have a couple of wks vacation coming up this summer & we are trying to decide where we will ride to this time... oh, man, i can't wait to get that bike back on the road! till then i will have my upcoming commuting to work on the bicycle start up to look forward to - at the end of feb. i think.
    you did an amazing job on this blog - keep up the good work & thx for sharing!! hugs! denyse

  2. Thanks Denyse. This was the inaugural road-trip for Pat's new car (okay, sorta new), most of the pics were taken through the sunroof. Weather was just a bit to funky to think about riding. Mostly 40-50 degree temps and threat of real weather on the way home, which turned out to be for real. I know you love your mild Victoria weather, but I hope BC gets at least enough snow for the Olympics. Hi to Joel & stay happy.

  3. you shoulda taken a pic of his new wheels! :)
    yeah, the mountain here on the island is enjoying tons of snow, while the olympic sites over on the mainland have had to go to plan b, some of it involving flying in bales of hay to shape the slopes!!
    joel is rocking out on rock band right now & he says hi back!

  4. Beautiful images and atmosphere, Matt!
    btw... whatcha using for your signature on pics?

  5. Thanks Alice. Compliments from a pro like you are not taken lightly. I've been using photoscape for collages and copyright lately. Free & relatively easy to use.

    Thanks Again,

  6. Great road-trip pics, Matt! You know I LOVE scenes like that (being a V.City fan, myself) I appreciate the landscape very much. I had the opportunity to go to Bend for the first time a few years ago...I was amazed at it's 'drier' beauty (vs. the typical lush part of Oregon) - love that Bald Eagle, too! I've never been fortunate enough to see one outside of the Natural History Museum (where the poor little guy was covered in dust)...