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It’s the journey, not the destination…

view from the back
view from the back

Although, this time, it’s both.  Ruka the Wonder Dog and I are headed to Silver Falls State Park, Oregon for a get together of 50 Roadtreks and to see my friend Ginny.   I am only taking 4 days to get there from Kansas City so it’s a lot of hard driving.

The first day, we left at 8 a.m. after loading up the food, gas and a little water. I packed the food last because it’s been 100 degrees.  Even though Olga  (my RS Adventurous) is parked in the shade, I don’t like the idea of canned goods getting that hot.  Even my Cliff Bars will melt!  I put in just enough water to wash my hands  and use the commode because I’ll get better mileage, especially in the mountains.  Gas, well, I can’t go anywhere without it, unfortunately.

This spring we came out west to spend the month in Idaho. Ruka got very sick and almost died from some sort of intestinal affliction which was never exactly diagnosed. The doc gave me some little white pills to give her so the long ride would be a bit easier. I gave her one and she was like a drunken sailor!  I felt awful- she felt loopy.  She was wobbly and her eyes were thick with druggy stupor.  I had to lift her in and out of the van. Of course, by the time we parked for the night, she was ready to shake a leg and party.  Lesson learned.

We headed up to Nebraska and across I-80,  a super duper highway with a whole lot of construction seeing as how it’s still warm weather  and that appears to be when they do that sort of thing.  I don’t know why they can’t work at night, during a blizzard when the rest of us aren’t out… Kidding!  I do appreciate the hard work those folks do, especially in the heat.  Stopped just east of Cheyenne for the night after 10 hours.

Yesterday, we drove a short 9 hours.  Okay, it wasn’t so short and my bum felt it.  We got out to stretch, often, and for her majesty to anoint the route so we can find our way home.  I took some aspirin, but didn’t give Ruka anything and she was just fine. It was raining and there was incredibly dense fog, about 30 feet of visibility so we crept along for quite a while. Good thing we didn’t take 70 through Denver and up- lots of terrible flash flooding there.

We went past Sinclair, WY, which boasts the Nation’s Most Modern Refinery! The town, small enough that it only supports the refinery, however, seems stuck in the 40’s with no modernization.  How ever, I’d like to get a tour of the refinery sometime.  It struck me as ironic; there is a Phillips 66 gas station on the highway blocking the view of the refinery as you drive west- you’d think there would be a big green dinosaur instead!

We finally got off of I-80 onto lovely Hwy 30 in Idaho. Made it to Lava Hot Springs about 5, and into the KOA nestled in the mountains, situated between the road and the river. I backed into a spot, opened the back doors and viola!  No highway noise and a perfect view of a small waterfall, just feet away!  The river is spring fed and gorgeous with lots of pretty watercress and many small falls.  We took a tour of the area by foot and paw, and found several sites right on the water along with a huge fenced field where I let her royal furriness run with joy and abandon.  This is a place I would recommend! There is a nice store with the sandwich bags and ice cream I so desperately needed.  The hot springs are just down the road, plus a few good eateries in town.


We slept 9 hours with the sound of the falls and cool temps. Up before dawn for an hour’s walk, watching the sun come up over the mountains, reflecting on the river, with kingfishers chattering. Coffee under a pine, watching the falls, no one up but us.    This is the sort of morning that makes my heart expand.

It is, indeed, the journey.



11 Responses to “The Journey”

September 13, 2013at4:46 pm, Dana dykman said:

A wonderful journey, indeed.
I so want to travel again to Oregon sometime soon; I will enjoy following your journey.
Hey, I saw a picture of an amazing looking place in Oregon that I would like to visit when we return. You may want to google it to see if you would want to check it out if it is close: Emerald Gorge, Oneonta Gorge, Oregon.

September 13, 2013at4:29 pm, Pam Hicks said:

Years ago someone told me that if there is watercress &/or striped bass in a stream, the water is safe to drink 🙂

September 13, 2013at3:20 pm, Sherry Hooker said:

Very beautifully written, Laura. I have noticed that, while travelling, most Road Treker’s wax poetic. I wonder, is it the feeling of freedom or the scenery, or perhaps the excitement of discovery?

September 13, 2013at12:07 am, Judi Darin said:

So wish I could be at the gathering – Silver Falls SP is about an hour from my home. Alas, I have a bad cold or some nasty virus. Next year for sure!

September 12, 2013at11:48 pm, Maureen said:

I can smell that morning coffee…have fun at the gathering! So glad your pup is doing well.

September 12, 2013at10:53 pm, Dave said:

There’s nothing like a red road is there? What a great way to wake up, slow down and smell the roses. Have a great trip! Bigfoot Dave

September 12, 2013at10:30 pm, Campskunk said:

i LOVE idaho. it’s good for whatever ails you. and, it has the ideal population-to-scenery ratio. thanks for letting us look over your shoulder as you enjoy the ambiance.

September 12, 2013at9:42 pm, Jim Diepenbruck said:

Two long days on the road but rewarded with a great camp site. NICE! Enjoy the journey and the great western gathering.

September 12, 2013at9:22 pm, Laura H Postema said:

Love this. Enjoy the gathering. Can’t wait to hear and read all about it. Continued safe travels…or should I say, journeys.

September 12, 2013at9:13 pm, Cheryl said:

Great entry. Have fun at the gathering! Wish I could be there.

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