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

Sunday, August 10, 2014

We Bike

Saturday and Sunday August 9 & 10, 2014

For the second year, Gay and Mary Ann have opened their home to us for a barbecue on their patio to start a weekend in Mazama.This year there were twelve of us, and all the side dishes and dessert that everyone brought to augment the barbecue was abundant and delicious. We enjoyed eating and socializing through the evening, and made our plans for the weekend.

The fires over the past weeks limited our biking options a little, but did not deter us from enjoying a ride and a visit to the swimming hole on Saturday. Two riders braved the cold river and took a full swim! Brave I say.

Arrival at the river for chilling dip and lunch

After enjoying our riding day, we gathered at one of the rental houses for a potluck dinner -- once again abundant and delicious,

Look at that spread!

Driving out from the forested community on our way "home", we were fortunate to site a buck. My photo is not very good, but I wanted to include it as we usually see mamas and babies, but almost never the daddies.

The elusive daddy

Sunday brought choices. A few went to Patterson Lake for boating and "SUPing"; a couple went for a hike; one or two headed home or to visit friends on the way home; one went fishing; and five of us went for another bike ride. We rode the back road from Winthrop to Twisp, had the famous "cinnamon twisp" at the Cinnamon Twisp Bakery, and did a little "touring" in this small town.

The ball (sculpture) in Twisp


The last sentence is very interesting. Arrival of horses enabled moveable homes
A Pit House


Inside the Pit House


The "moveable home"

We found the Art Studio on the grounds, and though the artist/owner was closing up to go to the gym, she stayed open for us to have a visit.

Visiting with the artist (Vickie found a tee shirt back there)

We returned to Winthrop on the same route, and stopped for a photo of a couple interesting mailboxes.

Once again old farm machinery has a second life -- mailbox stant



Eyes and curly hair on this one!


The fires continue, and the smoke has built over the past two days to include Winthrop which had been smoke free. There is evidence of ash on our parked cars which makes it real, and scary.

Firefighter base camp -- one of several

We learned that fortunately, the firefighters with the night shift have air conditioned trucks (in the background of the photo) to sleep in rather than in the hot tents in the middle of the day when the temperature is at its highest.

Our final photo for our final day. Signs similar to this are everywhere.


More wandering and some water

Friday August 8, 2014

We had a nice time on Lake Patterson while I skippered us around on a sunfish. I could do that with my limited sailing experience because, well, we had little to no wind!

Susan is equipped and waiting for our boat
See -- little to no wind -- just the conditions I like ;'-)

Our friends Gay and Mary Ann moved to Mazama a few years ago and know all there is to do around here. Boat rentals on Lake Patterson include the sunfish that we rented for an hour, plus kayaks, pedal boats, motor boats and Stand Up Paddle (SUP) boards. This will be on our list for anytime we are over here. Qhite a fine find.

Our potential plan to go tubing down the Methow River did not happen as the weather turned a little cool and the cold river was not as tempting as it was in the higher heat the previous day. Susan got her fishing gear togehter and sorted for an hour or so of fishing on the river in front of our studio apartment.

Susan prepares for some fishing time

Then we took an afternoon walk on the other part of the trail that we had walked the other day.

Idyllic spot up the river on the calm end just before the manmade damn.

Thus ended our afternoon and time to change gears to get to Gay and Mary Ann's house to welcome and join our cycling friends for dinner and planning of the weekend.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Morning walking around Winthrop

Wednesday and Thursday, August 6 & 7, 2014

A walk around town yesterday morning gave us more in-town sites and sounds.

Morning tree shadow hides some of the mural, but still a nice scene


This has now become my favorite place in town for tea, crumpet or lunch
I like the name of the place


The boardwalk that lines the Main Street of town

This morning's walk brought us behind the main part of town and across the Chewach river.

Susan is most likely looking for fish or signs of fish


Hill views -- these are not on fire


I had to include this as a possible Geronimo likeness!

Two nice walks in and around town, and today we plan to take part in some water activities -- more on that in the next post.


The fires all around have devastated some families. Some have had their houses burn to the ground, some have had trees from the high winds crash onto and destroy their house. Much of the fire in several different places are now pretty much contained and under control, but the firefighters and their trucks remain at work. Winthrop and Mazama and nearby areas remain smoke free.




August 2014

This morning's walk brought us behind the main part of town and across the

This says it all

Tuesday, August 5, 2014


The remainder of Sunday, and Monday 8/3 and 8/4/2014

By mid morning on Sunday, we were on the road with no particular destination in mind, but a peice of worry on our brain. There are more fires and we are not sure how that will affect the remainder of our trip. For now, while here we will hide in denial.

We drove along, enjoying the scenery of an area I have rarely been to, and made a few small lake stops for Susan to cast in a line. Conconully is a town I have never been to, though had friends, years ago, that would come to often for a getaway. Susan came here with her family a few times but has only some recolection of it. With the high heat, we grabbed a cabin at the state park -- not cheap, but air conditioned.

KOA type cabins at the Conconully State Park

Many of the small towns we have been to over here (Oroville, Conconully, Omak) have great outdoor activity and scenery, but the towns themselves do not offer much. They are simply out west towns with basics like a feed store, a hotel or two, a small grocery store, and maybe a tumble down cafe. Omak is a little bigger than that, but you need to get to its outskirts, and then it is a bit hustle and bustle traffic. Also -- Omak is the home of the "Stampede" which is being held next weekend, so hotels are already filling up for the pre-festivities.

The "resorts" along the lake in Conconully, and all the other little lakes we investigated, are crowded with RVs encroaching upon each other, sandy or grass bare tent spots, if any, and little in the way of lake access. The title of Resort is a stretch. The best place in Conconully is the state park.

Deer are abundant in Conconully and never fear the people. They roam the park grounds in families of several.

Once encamped in the cabin we realized that we both were a bit drained and happy for an early stop for the day. Earlier we each had thoughts of wanting to drive directly home. We cannot do that as we have hotel reservations in Winthrop that cannot be canceled, and we are meeting our biking friends there for a weekend of fun. This stop gave us a second wind, affording us a more positive outlook on the remainder of our vacation.

On the ranger's recommendation, we walked up to the Sit 'n Bull tavern for dinner. Afterward we roamed around the small local park, taking time to read all the posters with photos from 1903-07 taken by a man from Japan in those years. Apparently he being a photographer, came here for that express reason. The Park is a memorial to him. Interesting to let my mind wander and wonder about how or why someone from Japan would come to this (at the time) remote town to take photos for recorded history.

A drive out the dirt road to see the National Forest campground, and the place where Susan and her family camped when she was a young girl, completed our visit to Conconully, and we had now seen it all.

Next morning we continued our route to Omak and abutting town of Okanogan where we spent the night. Basically relaxing in our hotel room, reading, watching a movie and enjoying (once again) the air conditioning. An uneventful day of driving, exploring and being inactive!!


Sunday, August 3, 2014

Family Summer Camp 2014 comes to a close

Sunday morning 8/3/2014

And what a close it was!

It's a Boy! And he will no doubt be the topic of many family reunions to come.

Tiny but healthy

Marya, her sister, and her mom and dad spent all day in the hospital in Tonasket. The 3 pound 12 ounce baby boy was born there sometime in the early evening, and mom and baby did fine with no complications. Dad and baby have been flown to the hospital in Spokane and mama will get there sometime today with family members transporting her and taking good care.

A few of the family took off for home yesterday morning and early afternoon; Susan and I moved to the big house for one more night. It seems that we had all more or less hit the wall, and after breakfast ala Don and Jenny, lazed around most of the day. Also, the weather took a bit of a change -- clouds, some wind and bit of rain with lightning striking the wires across the lake.

Laurent took Diane for a boat ride to assure that she would at least make it into Canada (she had forgotten to bring her passport). Susan and Diane strarted out for a potential rescue mission, but as they got closer they saw that the sea gull that was flapping around helplessly had a broken wing and could not be helped.

Diane and Susan off on a rescue mission

To avoid being a complete slug I did take one more ride to my coffee shop, had a tea, wrote a few lines and said farewell.

Thanks and farewell good friend

We will pack up today and head west for our next "vacation" in Winthrop and Mazama. The bad news is that there are more fires, so we don't truly know what that will bring to our plans.

p.s. The new tire is great. We did, after much much searching, find a tiny hole with a very small piece of glass that had been causing all the flats. With my stroke of genious to switch front and back tires, the last tire change was much easier.


Saturday, August 2, 2014

Baby Early

Saturday, August 2, 2014

The plan was to have German Pancakes ala Greg -- from a longtime family recipe -- and continue the brunch hour(s) from 9:00 to noon, with a family group photo (wearing reunion tee shirts) at around 11:00ish. This gave those of us who needed to pack up for a move or trip home, time to do so.

We got a phone call -- change of plans. Marya had been taken to the hospital in the next town of Tonasket with contractions. This is the cousin who is due to give birth in mid to late September. There was lots of scurrying to get her there, parents to pack what they needed to spend time there with her, arrange possible airlifting to Spokane (their home site) hospital, and everyone being quite concerned for Marya and baby.

I will update when I have more info, but in the mean time will sign off as I seem to have "hit the wall" after this fun filled and active "summer camp" away from home.

Family Fun and Games

Thursday and Friday July 31 & August 1, 2014

There was fishing.

Laruent and Susan prepare fishing rods

There was badminton.


Adam, Jaydon and Don at the net

Picking teams with odd and even playing cards


There was the worst spelling bee.

A toss up of who is the worst speller in the family -- Greg, Jaydon (a ringer), Linda, or Jenny (who ended up winning)


There was try to make your opponet laugh.

I have no idea how Sarah kept from laughing at Adam's antics of dance!


There was "the most creative" entry into the water. We were all so enthralled with the entries, that no one picked up a camera. Clear winner was (pregnant) Sarah trying to do a somersault into the lake from the dock. Giving that up she lay over on one side and did a shoulder entry. The antics of getting herself ready and in position for entry was the most entertaining.

We tried for the scheduled outdoor movie and rootbeer floats, but the DVD had problems and after many tries we had to abort the movie part. Rootbeer floats were good.


The next day I stayed in (the air conditioned) house with Lucy while she napped and everyone else played a family softball game. They all came in dripping sweat and red faced after what sounded like a fun game.

I took my short bike ride, but passed up the coffee shop this time. I had a goal in mind. When Susan and I arrived in town a couple of days early, we took a drive along a back road. We saw an overly full tree of apricots. At the farmers market, we actually met the woman who owns that orchard. She told us to feel free to pick as many as we would like. I was off to pick some for the house.


Apricots abound. But it ended up they were not so great to the taste.


Apples are abounding too
They take their game birds seriously around here
I can hardly pass up an old farm building. An old homestead?


One more family game before the close of the reunion -- Trivial Pursuit, with one of the catagories being "Family Trivia". Earlier, everyone had emailed a little known fact about themselves to Marya for this part of the game. Some of those facts were fairly enlightening (who once worked in a whore house?), most were at least funny (who, by definition of a podiatrist, has the flattest feet known?). Marya had researched trivia questions and organized this event and it was extremely well done. Thank you Mrya.

This ended our last night together with everyone. Some would leave in the morning, a few would be staying for one more night.