Sunday, October 25, 2015


8 am Pacific Time. Pendleton OR

I’m in Oregon people! Due to reach Portland and my loving daughter and her family this afternoon!
Snake River crossing from Idaho to OREGON!
Yesterday I crossed the Snake River from Idaho to Oregon, like the nearly 50,000 pioneers who travelled the old Oregon Trail in the mid-1800s. I transitioned to Pacific Time and made a mental note per a road sign, that Etta and I had crossed the 45th Parallel, meaning we were situated half way between the Equator and the North Pole. 

The landscape changed as well, morphing from the beef cattle and corn agriculture of the flatland desert around Boise, to treeless hills, and gradually to fully forested tall pine peaks as we drove further into the state, hugging the Washington border along I-84. 
Flat desert out of Boise becomes hilly

A steep treeless mountain pass in Huntington Oregon near the Snake River
Another steep pass with blobs of naked mountains (except for sagebrush)
At last tall evergreens and Fall-yellow tamaracks on the Scenic Blue Mtn corridor of I-84 near La Grande OR

Deadman Pass was a slow climb for me and a steep descent, but the valley below in the basin of the Rockies opened up like the Promised Land. I can only imagine what those early emigrants felt at the sight, after so much struggle for a better life.
Good coffee at last!
This is Paula, first day barista at the Starbucks inside the Safeway supermarket in Baker City OR. I was so delighted to get a good cup of coffee! The brew on my journey was generally terrible…weak, tepid, tasteless or non- existent. (I admit to being a coffee snob!)

I’d also like to introduce you to Alexander the Great on the right, and his partner (I did not get his name) at their Chocolate Shop in downtown Pendleton. A bicyclist saw me staring in the shop window and said, ”Believe me, that place is the best”. All the chocolate treats on sale were made on site, organic and yummy. I tried a cold creamy chocolate drink, and bought a can of the ingredients with his homemade recipe.

What an amazing place-Pendleton Oregon with it's revitalized downtown!

It has statues to rodeo riders and pioneers, like George Fletcher above, African-American 2nd place Champion Bronco Rider of the World_1911.

a bronze statue commemorating Stella Darby, a madam of the “Cozy Rooms” in the first half of the last century:
Etta james and Madam Stella Darby
and a statue to Kathleen McClintock, the Roundup Rodeo pageant queen in 1929 for being the face of all the women who supported those cowboy events:

Well, it’s time to head out for the final 210 miles to Portland. This will be a bittersweet end to the journey. I’ve had fun, not drudgery along the way. 

Only bad part...I slammed my thumb in the car door trying to feed Etta quickly in a Utah parking lot squeezed next to a pickup trying to exit his space...not bad!

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