Nancy Cycles!

Nancy Cycles!
"You got to be careful if you don't know where you are going, because you might not get there." ... Yogi Berra

Monday, July 9, 2012

Update of "breakdown"

First let me correct our location. We are in Gresham -- not Gershwin -- Oregon (I don't know what I typed that had auto correct guessing at Gershwin, but I do not think there is a Gershwin, OR). That's what I get for not proof reading.

Just got the news that the van will be ready at about 1:00 today. Not sure exactly, but seems that all the dusty roads took a toll on the fuel line and clogged up something. They are cleaning out, and resetting some computer stuff, etc. etc., so $500 will now be added to our trip expense! Could have been worse as they always say, but my thought is -- could have been better!

I guess it wasn't such a bad thing to be towed here (AAA Plus) to a very nice room at the Guesthouse Motel. One (if pricey) way to extend our vacation by a day. When Susan gets back from her run we will pack up our few items and bike to the Ford dealer and head home. So unless some other unforeseen thing happens, that closes out my posts for this adventure.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

There was also a car show

In addition to the music for this weekend, there was a car show that brought in 135 cars. We hear that the number is down from 165 from last year, but 135 sure filled up a couple of streets in this small town.

A few dressed on their hippy era attire. On his pocket is printed "love, peace, joy". Oh for the hippy days.

This one is for Diane,

and this one is for Billie.


This may be the oldest one there.

We had been staying in the Fossil Motel but had to move out on Friday because guests were due in for our room. We loved that room! Nice and big, a kitchen and big fridge, comfortable beds. Ann, the new owner gave us a great little spot for our sleeping tent and our screen tent, so we set up our own little compound for the remainder of our stay.

When on our adventure vacations, I think I have mentioned that we do errands by bike, and basically use our bike for most all local transportation. That would include hauling our lawn recliners to the court house lawn to hear some music...



Ann was becoming convinced that we would become residents of Fossil as we kept extending our stay (originally booking a room for one night, and staying five), but the time did come for our departure.

If ever you are in Fossil, or when you decide to go for the very fun Bluegrass Festival, look up The Fossil Motel, and sleep in a Fossil bed. It will not be hard to find in this small town, and you will love the owners.





Now back to the car breakdown. The car salesman brought us and our bikes to the motel in a pick up truck, Susan went to the store for some food and drink items, we are showered and feeling a little better than when we first got here. We will bike back to the Ford dealer tomorrow - with hopes that it is an easy and inexpensive fix. We can dream can't we ;'-) Will post reality tomorrow.

Frontier Women at the Bluegrass Festival

We learned that Wheeler County has a population of 1500 -- the whole county! It is not urban, suburban nor rural. It is classified as frontier. Who even knew there was such a classification? We are then, frontier women!

Every fourth of July weekend (since twelve yearS ago) Fossil hosts a Bluegrass festival. We attended most of the performances and had a great time.


Vickie, this one is for you -- "Misty Mamas". Misty River retired last June and this group has Carol (banjo) as the only original player. They were pretty good, but not as good as Misty River.




There were workshops going on for anyone who had an instrument and wanted to play.

There was a dinner break from performances and local Vendors had booths with different food choices.

This festival is a huge economic boost for the relatively poor town of Fossil, and some of the booths, meals, runs, and fun are provided by 4H, school, or other local organizations. Susan and I, being the frontier women we are, ran (Susan) and walked (me) the 5K race on Saturday morning and she was first in our age group (she ran) and I came in second (I walked). I don't know how many were in our age group (not many), but the age was 56 and over which put us in the same age group, otherwise I could have been first in my age group! We had fun, then went to the all you can eat breakfast!!! So much for the morning calorie burn.


Another Small town fourth of July

This was possibly the shortest and the quietest Fourth of July parade I have ever seen.


The "ukeladies" played and sang "Tiny Bubbles".


That was it.

I did yet another ride around town (I told Susan that I was doing so many rides on the same streets that people would begin to think I was casing the place), and had more things to see...



The Fairgrounds provided camping for Bluegrass campers. The town filled up for the festivities.


We have been keeping so busy that I am two days behind in posting. I think I will now have a little time to catch up.

We left Fossil by mid morning and worked our way to Hood River, OR on our way to home. About five miles after leaving Hood River on Interstate 84, our van gave up moving! Susan steered us to the (rather narrow) shoulder and we tried to assess any obvious problem -- oil check was ok, water level was ok, we had just filled up with gas, no wires appeared loose. Nothing obvious that we could see.

Called triple A and have been towed to the Ford Dealership in Gershwin, OR which is an outskirt of Portland. We are in a motel and will see what the service department comes up with!

Now that we are settled in, I will work on updating so this will certainly be out of order.

Friday, July 6, 2012

U turns

This was basically a driving exploration day to follow up on some suggestions we had been given. Once on the gravel/dirt/dusty road, we guesstimated it would be at least 30 long and miserable miles to the isolated fishing place that our fly fisher friend had told Susan about. We made our first U turn, but got a couple of photos in the hazy sky.


We were surprised to see so many turbines out in the fields.

We drove on for our next attempt for a visit to the hamlet of Lonerock that the motel owner had told us about to see, well the rock behind the church! The looooooong and winding road was not to Susan's liking for driving, but we continued on until the pavement turned to that gravel/dirt/dust thing again. Did we really need to see a rock behind a church? We made our second U turn.


We drove back toward "our town" of Fossil with a little excursion to visit the fossil bed close to town. Part way up the hill, with eighteen more miles to go, we read the brochure that told us it was not open to the public and we could view the beds from afar. We had done that at the other Fossil beds. We made our third U turn.

Susan dropped me off at the top of a hill (after driving down the more scary hairpin turns) and I enjoyed a delightful coast into town with a few more views on the way.


Back in town we did some chores by bike - a drive by view of the Court House where festivities will take place for the Bluegrass Festival (Vickie, eat your heart out)...
... and a stop at the everything store for supplies... Hard to figure out why people drive their car around town for errands as it is such a tiny area that walking or biking gets you there too soon!


It was fairly difficult to get many miles on my bike in this small town so I did a few leisurely laps in and around all the nooks and crannies and dead ends.

We have learned that Wheeler county (where we are) has three incorporated towns, and has more horses than people.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Fossil Beds Part 2

So .. After breakfast we drove to John Day and surrounding environs. The route we drove on this day is named Journey Through Time", and lives up to that name as we pass into and around 40-50 (depending on what you read) million year old canyons. Paleontologists dig around in these hills and ancient canyons to uncover fossils of millions of years old animals and vegetation.




After wandering around on some of the short paved trails (carefully aware that there are rattle snakes in them thar hills) and stopping at the very extensive and informative Paleontology Visitor Center, we drove on to Prairie City to cycle a short route we had found in a visitor magazine. Short would be good because it was a long drive there and then a long drive back.

We drove smack dab into the town's Fourth of July Parade...





We gathered up some lunch supplies, offloaded our bikes from the van, geared up and took off for the Prairie Valley Loop ride. Susan has purchased new saddle and needed to make adjustments as we went along...


She got it just right and we enjoyed yet another peaceful country ride with nary a car to be had in bright blue sky.


I tried to get the many mud swallows that were flying in and out of these holes, but they scattered once I stopped for the photo.

A few miles were unpaved but hard packed as we completed the loop.

We returned to what was a bustling, busy, noisy, crowded town to find a quiet, almost abandoned hamlet. Our long drive back to Fossil gave different perspective views of the Journey Through Time route and we pulled into the Stage Stop Inn as the sun set golden over the John Day River.