Near death x 2

July 2, 2017

I thought I had better put a picture up of a church as the big fella was looking after me yesterday.

What a day – starts off well with a good early start. I pack up and head up the highway and cross the border into Oregon. Straight away is Ontario and I go into the town centre and find this trendy little breakfast/coffee shop;

I also ran into this dude;

I then headed off the Interstate with my destination being Burns. Taking this route again kept me off the main roads and took me thru some country towns. The landscape was first quite flat and a lot of irrigation.

As I come into one small town I decided to call in on the local sheriff (saw the sign). A massive camper (RV) had been right up my backside for the last 5 klms. I took note that it was an older style one and I have learnt to really be careful around them – old camper means most likely older driver.

I put on my left indicator and went to turn – the &*&^% sped up to overtake me on the left which meant that I had to brake heavily to stop from being run over. Not a near miss but close enough.

I stop at the sheriff’s office and have a coffee with him. On my way and its great riding as the air is cool enough and its good fun. The landscape keeps changing and I see some interesting things along the way.

Even a nice place that just needs a coat of paint;

I get to Burns and its still early in the day. I notice about 8 or 9 state trooper cars outside a building and pull over. Just as I stopped they were all coming out and getting into their cars. I was a movie scene as they had pursuit vehicles, trucks and unmarked vans. These guys are also dressed in the distinctive stripped pants and the straight brimmed hats.

Two guys who were partners stopped to talk to me. They told me the office was just a staging / working point for when they are in town and their bigger office is a couple of hrs up the road at Bennnnn. They tell me that they have come down for “the goddam rainbow hippie festival” that is on over the weekend and they expect anywhere up to 100,000 hippies to attend. I didn’t know that there were that many 70yr. old’s still active. The real concern though was that they were having it in the hills and if a fire started they wouldn’t be able to get them out.

I was glad at that stage not to be a hippie – these guys looked and acted like marines and had the firepower in the cars to match. I laugh when I see the shotguns mounted in the front between the seats when ours were withdrawn from service a few years ago.

I stop and was about to fill up Fred when a guy comes along and takes the pump off me to do the fueling himself. I was about to ask what he was doing when I saw this bizarre sign;

Off I went and kept going up the road to Bend. Kept taking a few photos;

Along the way I was going up one of the very steep inclines when I came across a large cattle truck that had the hood up and was clearly broken down. The driver was the real deal re cowboy – he had on a hat that Hoss Cartwright would be proud off, western boots, monster belt buckle and the swagger to match.

Anyway, he had blown a hose and was waiting for a guy to come out with the part – he couldn’t believe that a guy from Australia on holiday would stop. I told him that’s what we do in Australia as there is a good chance that we know the guy who is broken down. Ha.

I was starting to get a bit tired so I pulled into this post office store. I had a coffee – the husband and wife team were a laugh and in for a talk. He had a great mullet and covered in tats. She was a big girl and really jolly. Felt right at home. These guys were absolutely in the middle of nowhere. They were mighty impressed when I told them that my Auntie Faye (now in her 80’s) ran the last manual telephone exchange/post office in Australia – true story.

I then come across this gorge and take a few pictures;

The day is starting to get pretty hot the further west I go – I expected this and wanted to get across the desert whilst it wasn’t too bad as I had been told that it can really cook out there. I get to Bend and call in on the State Troopers to pick a patch up. The trooper I spoke to told me to keep going another 18 miles up the road as there is a very good RV park at Redwood that is reasonable in price compared to the one locally that is over the top.

Now he tells me to take special care as the highway is busy and to look out for idiots. I set off and no sooner have I gone about 10klms up the road and very large and full garbage bag has flown out of the back of a trailer that was about 3 cars ahead of me. The guy had passed me and was towing the trailer with a large pick up truck.

Well the car in front of me swerved and missed it and it was bouncing down the road directly at me – luckily, I was only doing about 80kph and veered around it. I think it must have been full of clothes. Talk about crapping myself – again it was not a near miss but it was closer than the RV incident as it was about chest height when it went past me.

I get to the RV park and thankfully I get a patch of grass in the shade. The park is at maximum capacity as there is a dog show over the weekend. That’s right – dog show. The park’s capacity is 106 sites so I guess there would be about 150 dogs here. What a day! I am going to take a few photo’s later to show you guys how big some of these RV’s are – they are bigger than some houses.

To finish off I will leave you with 1 more picture – there are tents and caravans all around the place selling fireworks for the 4th July – what could go wrong?


  1. Comment by Vanessa

    Vanessa Reply July 2, 2017 at 8:59 am

    So are you going to the hippie festival?

    • Comment by Noel

      Noel Reply July 2, 2017 at 12:04 pm

      If only I had more time….

  2. Comment by Ian Bailey

    Ian Bailey Reply July 2, 2017 at 10:02 am

    Keep ’em coming Noel. I’m enjoying this.

    • Comment by Noel

      Noel Reply July 2, 2017 at 12:05 pm

      Ha – thanks mate

  3. Comment by Phil

    Phil Reply July 2, 2017 at 12:42 pm

    Keep safe Noel. Love the trip.

    • Comment by Noel

      Noel Reply July 2, 2017 at 1:49 pm

      Thank mate

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