Orcas Island 25k – wait, what??

I must have been hypnotized..  Paul was talking about this race that’s so popular you enter a lottery to get in and then I was looking at the web site and there were only 4 spots left and then I reached for a credit card and signed up!  Really??

And THEN I read the FAQs..   My decision was clearly driven by scarcity – 4 spots, must act now! – and not common sense.  The good news is I’ll have 6 hrs to go just under 16 miles – and given the 4450 ft of elevation gain, I may need every minute of it!!


Silver Star Mountain

Headed out for Ed’s Trail on Silver Star Mountain in Washington Sunday morning.  The last 8-10 miles were 4-wheel drive, but otherwise fairly easy to get to.  We were promised amazing views of Mt St Helens and other peaks + load of wildflowers and this trail really delivered!  There was a steady uphill grade along the ridge lines with 2 spots that were more of a scramble/climb and then and easy wide downhill on a jeep path for the return.  Just under 5 miles round trip, almost all exposed sunlight.



Tryon Creek State Park

Tried out what we thought was a new park, only to realize by looking at MotionX that we’d hiked there before!  Once we looked around, the nature center and other features started to look familiar, but going in we had no idea!  It was beautiful and had lots of winding trails with ups and downs..  Good for hiking and good for Paul to do some trail running.  Even without the dramatic waterfalls, it will be a good place to take or send visitors with a range of abilities.  Plus the nature center is really nice!  http://oregonstateparks.org/index.cfm?do=parkPage.dsp_parkPage&parkId=103

Tryon Creek State Park

Afterwards, we picked up a few items at Market of Choice.  A really nice little market somewhere on the scale between Zupan’s and Trader Joe’s.  I’m sure we’ll check in periodically – especially if we happen to be in that area in a car. http://www.marketofchoice.com/about-market-of-choice/locations

We ended the day with some baking – I made a quiche and Paul made an amazing sour cherry pie from the fresh cherries off of the neighbor’s tree.  The house smelled amazing and the pie was delicious!  http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/cherry-pie-238923

Sunday hike @ Oswald West State Park

After much debate over a coffee at Starbucks in re which hike to tackle, we finally headed west towards Cannon Beach in a chilly drizzle with a plan to hike in Oswald West State Park – from the beach at Short Sand to the peak of Mt Neahkanhie.  We believe we’ve done the hike from this same beach to Cape Falcon before, possibly the first trip we made to Oregon in 2010.

The light rain abated fairly soon into the hike, but the steady climb did not!  What turned out to be only @ 4.5 miles to the summit, felt like 10.  The old growth forest was indeed beautiful and the views from the overlooks and peak were worth the effort!  We found a perch at the rather crowded peak and had our wraps and some cherries before heading back down.  The hike down went remarkably fast.  We stopped off at the beach to soak our fatigued feet in the chilly pacific, before heading back to the car for the drive home.


Home, showered and hungry – we head out for the Muddy Rudder, but only make it as far as Reverend’s BBQ.  Still not sure what the fascination is with this restaurant, but we do find it to be good for comfort food + the service is great and the atmosphere always lively!  Maybe that IS the draw – certainly worked for us.

Ended the night with a lovely bottle of Colene Clemens 2014 Rose and some mindless television while we massaged our feet and legs hoping to be in good shape to enjoy our day off – Memorial Day.





Sunday hike up to Riverview Cemetery

Looked at the forecast this morning and it seemed like it might start raining @ 11, so we decided to head out and get our steps in early.  Headed to Starbucks and then across the Sellwood bridge toward Willamette Park via Zupan’s, but decided to explore the area directly across from the west end of the bridge.  It turned out to be the entrance to the Riverview Cemetary.  Based on the number of runners and cyclists we saw, we decided there wasn’t any problem just following the road up and into the cemetery.  Made for a good length hike on a paved road thru the peaceful cemetary + lots of hills to get your heart going!  We followed the marked bike path and eventually came out on Taylor’s Ferry road.  We made our way down to Zupan’s and on home..

One project we’d considered for a while is now checked off the list!  We moved the clothes racks with counter top down from my office to the space next to the washer/dryer where is will serve as a laundry station.  It fits perfectly!  We also did some cleanup and Paul pulled a lot of nails out of the joists..  The basement has sooo much potential!

While there has been some rain, its been cut with bursts of sunshine as well – so typical Portland weather.  🙂  I’m enjoying the fire and a chai while I do some travel research..  got to get that b-day trip nailed down!!

Saturday around town..

Added to the garden..  We had missed starting sugar snap peas from seeds in Feb, but we found some starts at a nursery and decided to put them in anyway – better late than never!  We also got some strawberry plants for the planter boxes – they say they’ll yeild until October, so that should be fun!  http://www.birdsandbeespdx.com/  http://portlandnursery.com/

Went to Gramma’s Corner in Milwakie for breakfast based on pretty high Yelp review..  Hmmmm.  Not likely to do that again.  Wasn’t bad, just wasn’t anything special either – like an iHop.  Next time we’ll go with option B – “B” for Bob’s Red Mill!

Took a walk and did the loop trail around the rookery to get our steps in..  Saw where they’d added the final spans to the Sellwood bridge.  Won’t be long before they start taking down the old structure.  Stopped in the The Bottle Shop for a sip and a snack..  Enjoyed a bottle of Lady Hill Winery, Freedom Hill Vineyard Pinot Noir (2013).  Quite good and a good value @ $20!  http://ladyhill.net/

Our neighborhood is so awesome!!

Had a crockpot of chili going most of the day which came out really well:

Onion, bell peppers, garlic, 3 cans of beans – black, pinto, kidney, small can of chilis, soyrizo (browned), box of crushed tomatos, box of beef broth.  Seasoned with cayenne, chili powder, garlic powder, cumin, smoked paprika, black pepper.  Let that cook for @ 3 hrs.  Then added potatoes, tomato paste, mexican oregano, a little sugar and salt.  Similar to the recipe on Epicurious for 2-bean and vegetable chili..  Top with some cheddar and sour cream – delish!  http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/two-bean-chili-with-vegetables-1125

Fort Stevens and Astoria

Hiked around Fort Stevens on Sunday @ 12 miles!  Spent some time down on the beach, saw the underwhelming “shipwreck”, slogged thru some grassy trails that made me sorry I’d opted for a skirt, and logged quite some miles on a pace bike path. 

The history and the bunkers were really interesting and the lake was pretty.  Had hoped to grab a quick fish and chips from Bowpickers, but with a line down the block, passed for a bite at the Rogur Ale House instead before heading home.