Magone 2010

September 2010

Sometimes a bunch of words can't say it right.  Our annual trip to Magone Lake in Eastern Oregon has become such a regular thing that we find ourselves taking very few pictures.  Let's just say that the cast iron skillet is a big one.

The boat dock was under construction which kept the boaters from getting onto the lake.  Those of us with pontoon boats found lots of large hungry Rainbows.


California 2010 Day 10

The morning dawned clear and perfect. We loaded up the loaner Jeep with our gear and headed into Yosemite National Park, staying on the upper road to Tuolumne Meadows. We were in the mood to do some hiking! The scenery is breathtaking as you climb above 8000 feet.

We reached the Tuolumne Meadows Campground and drove back in to the trailhead for Elizabeth Lake. The hike would not be too long. Just a bit over 2 miles and an altitude change of 900ft. The lake is at 9,500ft with higher peaks around it. The first part was the steepest and we soon found ourselves looking for a place to take a break, catch our breath, and eat lunch.

It was SO green. Absolutely beautiful. It sprinkled on us off and on the first hour, the temps were very pleasant. A buck, used to people, kept his distance but allowed us to enjoy his company.

The crystal clear creek was filled with trout that could see you coming. We got a few hits on our flies, but only if we snuck up on the wary trout.

There were a few people on the trail and at the lake, but, for the most part, we felt like the mountains were ours.

Naturally, the hike downhill was a breeze, making us feel like we were in incredible shape! We hopped in the car and spotted a clash of bucks out in Tuolumne Meadows. Becky thought I was joking when I said I wanted to turn around and go get a better shot...you decide.

Next stop was the west end of Tenaya Lake. Talk about picturesque. Wow.

At Olmstead Point, we got out and enjoyed the view of the backside of Half Dome. A Pika was out running around making quite a racket and posing for a multitude of viewers.

This pic tickled me. Although it meant well, I just wondered why the bears don't slow down...

The end of our day found us buying Pizza for our hosts and relaxing back at the cabin. A young doe and her baby hoped to join us. After a good night's rest, we loaded up the plane and headed home. The density altitude at 10am was 4600ft (physical elevation of Pine Mountain E45 2900ft) but the little Cessna ("that could") lifted off easily and took us to lunch with friends in Redding. From Redding, we found another tail wind and rode it home, although not without a good share of mild turbulence along the way that kept it exciting.

What a great trip. Nothing like making memories.



California 2010 Day 8 & 9

Day eight was a little more relaxed. Becky spent much of the day with my sister browsing the shops in Exeter while my Brother-in-law and I babysat the TV. Soon, before we started getting sore, he and I went out and hooked up about 800 feet of firehose to a pump to pull water out of a canal and get it to their humungous yard of grass. Later, the rest of their family came by for a BBQ and swim.

Day nine started a little earlier. We loaded up the car and took off for the airport. We made it almost to the road before I realized I forgot a box of plums I'd picked for our host and hostess at our next stop. Back to the house for the fruit. Finally, on our way, we'd gone about 3 miles and almost made it to the freeway when Becky realized she'd left her phone in the bathroom. Back to the house for the communicator. Our third attempt at getting to the airport was successful and soon we were on our way north for Pine Mountain.

The airport (http://www.airnav.com/airport/E45) is at 2900 ft and the heat created a density altitude of 5,600ft. The landing was unremarkable - we get to use the plane again.

Our hostess and her canine escort from the Cub Inn (http://www.thecubinn.com/) picked us up in her Jeep and took us to our lodging. Since we were a bit early, we brought our bags in and borrowed their car to go looking for a fishing license for our trip tomorrow into Yosemite. We're debating Saddlebag Lake at 10,000ft or May Lake at 9,000ft. Tomorrow's post will show that we did neither!

We got back to the Inn and immediately ended up back in the car and going to the lake for some swimming. Pine Mountain Lake is private. You have to know the right person to get in. The water was wonderful!

Back at the house we were greeted by the local Buck, known as "Robert". A beautiful animal.

Then there's the other animal. We were greeted by a Bull Terrier named Zoe. Becky learned in the car from the airport that this wonderful animal prefers humans to keep their distance! The nip on the side of her nose healed quickly. That evening at the house, she nearly wore the dog out. Our host had to carry it to bed - walking was not gonna happen. Let's just say that they quickly became buddies!

Oh! Then there's Elvis the Jack Rabbit! Becky's never seen one up close, so when I saw him feeding on some carrot pieces that the deer had left behind, I quietly slipped inside, yelled for Becky and grabbed my camera. Well, it was not to be. All I got was a blurry pic of a Elvis running into the brush, never to be seen again that weekend. Drat. Becky missed one again.