CoachPotato's RV Site

Annual Oregon "Fishing" Trip

Photos of this trip were lost during site change.

June 8-13, 2008

Actually, it's an annual visit to my old high school buddy, Al, in Prineville (near Bend) Oregon. Usually we go fishing. We tried this year, but it wasn't to be.

At Ochoco Lake, Al prepares to launch the boat for our 15 minutes of fishing before we got blown off the lake. It was cold and windy. This was Tuesday the 10th of June.


The road near Mt. Bachelor.  This is JUNE! A couple of years ago I fished near La Pine, Oregon with Al, in July - and it snowed! We drove about 90 minutes to this area, turned around and drove about 30 more to the lake. It was a windy 42° with a wind chill of near freezing. This was Wednesday, the 11th. We didn't bother to launch the boat, we just turned around and went back home.


My troubles weren't all weather related. This was on Sunday, June 8, as I was heading to Oregon. The tread separated on the inside dual. I called my Progressive Insurance people for their "Roadside Assistance" help. Ha! I was about 20 miles south of Chico, California and they couldn't find anyone to change my flat. Four hours later I was on my way after finding someone myself. In Prineville, I bought four new tires as they were all seven years old and I just can't trust them any more. Next time I have a flat, I'll fix it myself. It's a lot of work wrestling those big old tires and wheels, but I've done 'em before and I can do it again! I am 0 for 2 with "Roadside Assistance" programs, and won't be buying another such phony program!


The trip wasn't all bad luck. Here I am settled in for the night at the Red Bluff, CA Wal-Mart store. It was hot, but rather nice by this shady tree. I had a good rest that night and reached Prineville the next day.


I paused under the gaze of Mt. Shasta enroute home on Friday, June 13th. This is US 97 near the Oregon state line. Hey! uhhh, Friday the 13th?! I took this trip on a Friday the 13th?! Ok, now I get it... maybe that explains all the lousy luck!

My Log 

June 8, 2008 Day 1: Home to Red Bluff, CA Via I-5, SR12, SR113, SR99: 206 Miles

The plan was to drive to Klamath Falls, Oregon the first day, but things didn't work out that way. I left early on Sunday morning and gassed up at the Safeway gas station in Stockton. I would get a 10 cent discount for being a Safeway customer - and still paid $4.34 per gallon. The maximum purchase allowed was $199, and I accepted it. I didn't get a full tank, but enough to get into Oregon where I prefer to buy gas.

I stopped in Live Oak, near Gridley, and met Gale and John for breakfast. After a nice time with them, I continued my drive. I stopped at the beautiful little cemetary just above Gridley and visited my aunt and uncle's gravesite. I hadn't been there in years, and it was a moving time for me.

I continued driving north until a calm shattering racket brought me to the side of the road. I pulled over at once and discovered that an inside dual tire had shredded. The tread had separated from the casing and created the terrible noise. It caved in one side of the storage bin just forward of the tire, taking out some wiring and breaking one small, metal strut. I called my so-called road side assistance people - and could get no help. After much frustration and delay, I finally found a nearby tow company who agreed to come remove the damaged tire and install my spare. Nearly four hours after the tire separated, I was again heading north. And I was nly $85 poorer - less than half what one outfit wanted to charge me.

The delay meant I'd only get to Red Bluff the first day, but that was better than trying to drive 'til nearly dark to get to Klamath Falls. After I wrapped and taped the wiring that had been damaged, all was fine there at the Wal-Mart parking lot in Red Bluff. It was hot, nearly 100 degrees, but my trip was only delayed and no serious damage had been done. 


June 9 Day 2: Red Bluff, Ca to Prineville OR via I-5, US95 and local roads: 333 Miles

I left Red Bluff early to arrive at Al's home by mid-afternoon. I called and asked him to price some new tires for the coach at the local Les Schwab Tire store - where Les Schwab got his start many years ago. The tire that had failed was an original on the coach and was seven years old. I had four original tires and could no longer trust them. I would get all of them replaced with new ones.

I arrived at Al's in the mid afternoon. He had cleared an area for me to park the coach. I was soon settled into my home next to his home. After dinner together around their living room watching TV, I headed back to the coach for a good night's sleep. The next day  we planned to go fishing.


June 10 Day 3: At Al's.

I was surprised by the cold night that fell on Central Oregon. I had to have the bedroom heater set to a tolerable temperature of about 60 degrees so that I could sleep in comfort with my winter sheets and three blankets! It must have been in the 30's during the night. When I got up around 0500 it was only 51 degrees in the living room of the coach. And this is June?! In Oregon, that's how it can be.

We left early to get to the nearby lake. When we arrived the wind was blowing lightly, and by the time we got launched and motored across the lake to the area Al wanted to fish, the wind had grown much stronger and the lake was very lumpy and cold. It was much like the delta near home - in December! After about 20 minutes of fishing, we decided that we'd had enough fun. We reeled in and headed for the dock. We were the only boat rig in the parking lot when we arrived - and when we left. The other fishermen knew something we didn't and all stayed home.


June 11 Day 4: At Al's

We headed for Lava Lake, near Mt. Bachelor, early in the morning. We discovered that the jinx was still with us. After about a two hour drive, including one turn-around due to a very snowy highway, we arrived at Lave Lake. I walked out onto the dock, saw the rolling, wind driven waves, felt the cold, fridged wind that must have been in the 30s, and told Al to go ahead and fish if he wanted to. I'd sit in the van 'til he was done. Al agreed that it was too cold and windy to fish, and we drove an hour and a half back home. So much for the fishing on this fishing trip!

When we got back to Al's place, I took the coach to the local Les Schwab store and had four new tires installed on the coach. I can now trust my tires.


June 12 Day 5: Head for home via US97: 176 Miles

Al and I went to breakfast at a local restaurant, and enroute I filled up for $4.17 per gallon, not a bad price nowadays. After a fine, pig-out breakfast, we went to the local RV lot where I dumped my tanks and loaded fresh water for just $4. Whatever the trip home may bring, I had empty holding tanks and lots of fresh water. I dropped Al off at his home, then hit the road.

I stopped in La Pine to visit my niece and nephew and their children, and had lunch with them at the local truck stop. I then drove over to their home to see it for the first time. After a couple of hours, I continued south on US97. I pulled in to the Wal-Mart at Klamath Falls for the night. It was mild weather and not too cool at night for a change. I had dinner aboard the coach, and spent a very restful night.


Friday the 13th Day 6: Onward to home via US97, I-5, SR99: 353 Miles.

I was on the road at 0515 and figured to arrive home early in the afternoon. I made one stop for breakfast aboard the coach, and otherwise just kept up a good pace. I parked in front of the house at exactly 1300. It was a good trip home without any incident. After the tire problem and the lousy weather for fishing, it was good to have a relatively boring drive!



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