For the last week or so, I've had the itch. That's because - for the last couple of weeks - a family vacation to the Mt. Shasta area in California has kept us occupied and off the trail. Not that I'm complaining - we were duly pampered with fabulous food and plush accommodations - but once we got back, it seemed like a good idea to get out a little bit. @mrs.turbodb wasn't quite so enthusiastic as I was, but when she learned that it was u-pick peach season near one of our favorite camp sites on the east side of the Cascades, she quickly changed her tune.
With just a single night in the woods planned, packing was simple. Heck, we didn't even bring the fridge, opting instead for lunch on the road, ramen for dinner, and freshly picked peaches for breakfast the next morning.
And so, not long after setting off - but with our bellies full of tasty burritos we'd eaten for lunch - we arrived at ▮▮▮▮▮▮ Creek, where I quickly set up the tent at one of our favorite sites.
Home away from home.
There was nothing on the docket except napping and relaxation for this trip, so with camp taken care of, we grabbed our new GCI rocking camp chairs (see Rig Review: What worked and what didn't - Summer 2021?) and headed down to the river.
It's been a dry year, and the water level shows it! Often, there's no room to walk on the right side of the creek.
A nice rocky beach and swimming hole with a view.
After a couple hours lazing around - reading, skipping rocks, and otherwise having a great time - we headed back up to camp and straight into the tent. It was 4:00pm, warm with a slight breeze, and just about perfect for an afternoon nap. Afternoon turned into evening, and three hours later we finally dragged ourselves back down the ladder for a quick dinner of Ramen.
As @mrs.turbodb set about chopping a few veggies and heating up the water, I followed a short trail to a water feature that we always like to check out, and played around with the exposure settings on the camera to get a nice smoothing effect on the whitewater.
Whisps of white.
As I returned to camp, I was informed that the Ramen - which we've had in the kitchen box for a good couple of years - had worn a hole through the bottom of its plastic wrapper and started to mold; dinner was now going to be chopped fresh veggies.
Which was fine, really - neither of us was all that hungry after our lunch anyway. Plus, it let me head down to the creek again by camp and do some more playing around with the camera at f/22, and also catch the little bit of light in the western sky.
Magic of movement.
Sunset over the Cascades.
The next morning, we were definitely not up early. We'd probably been awake and reading for an hour or so, but I think it was 9:00am when we finally decided that the sun pouring through the tent windows was just too much to ignore, and we climbed down the ladder to greet the day.
Top of the morning.
After a quick granola bar snack, we packed up the tent and pulled our Ramen-filled trash bag from the tree where I'd stowed it during the wee hours of the morning. You see, we'd stored it in the bed the night before, and the rustling of a nosy mouse been just loud enough to rouse me from my sleep. Just another benefit of the Trasharoo we use on most trips.
Threading our way out of camp.
What a view.
From there, it was all downhill to the highway, the road winding between the mountains and along the edge of the creek. Halfway back, the dirt gave way to pavement, but the views never let off. And then, I saw it. As has become a habit, I was quickly out of the truck with the camera in hand.
Hey look, another one of my fury friends!
With vehicles approaching from both directions, this guy wasn't going to stick around - he quickly loped over to the edge of the road and down toward the creek.
Not sure where the bear went, he was gone when I got to the edge. A cave, perhaps?
Back on the road, and headed towards peaches!
Soon, we were at the Stutzman Ranch - a family-run u-pick farm that we discovered years ago and return to every summer for cherries, peaches, and whatever else we can get our grubby little hands on. With big eyes and even bigger peaches (and nectarines) ripe for the picking, we made quick work of the boxes we'd taken into the orchard, and filled our stomachs at the same time!
Half the haul.
Millions of peaches, peaches for me. Millions of peaches, almost for free!
It'd been a short trip but a fun one. And one that we'd enjoy slurping down the results of for the next week to come.