Bend, OR


We owe our readers some posts after taking a long break from blogging and then a longer break from computers all together. We have plenty to share of our last 1500 miles of riding through the Pacific Northwest. Thanks for hanging in there!

Here’s a quick summary of our travels to get us up to Bend. In October 2011, we left from Saratoga, NY and bicycled in a roundabout way (which is our general route style) to Myrtle Beach, SC. From here we rented a car, drove to Jacksonville, FL. We then spent all of December and January exploring the depths of Florida, central on down to Key West. We had a terrific reunion with family in the Keys and then we decided to rent yet another car and drive up to Asheville, NC and spend a few weeks with friends and gather ourselves for the next leg of travels. In mid February we caught a rideshare on Craigslist and arrived after 2 nights and 3 days of whirlwind cross country travel in Tucson, AZ. We remained in the Southwest for a couple months, volunteering at a National Park and biking from Southern Arizona almost to Denver, CO. In Denver we nearly melted from the temperatures in July. We made an executive decision to take a weeklong rental adventure from Denver to Bend, OR. The rental car helped us along on our journey in order to get us closer to our friend’s wedding in August near Seattle in addition to a housesitting job. We also used the rental car to avoid some blistering heat and drought that the west was experiencing this summer.

So here we begin again, the rental car (affectionately named Butterscotch), our bicycles and us are about to arrive in Bend on July 9th, 2012.

After our morning hike on the obsidian flow at Newbury Crater Volcanic Monument and a slow scenic drive up to Mt. Bachelor we arrived in Bend at Denise and Jimmer’s home. Denise was Debi’s roommate when she lived in Bend in 2003-4 and Jimmer is Denise’s husband. After catching up we made plans to float down the Deschutes river that afternoon. Returning the rental car was flawless. Bye bye Butterscotch bye bye –  back on the bikes now!

Floating on the Deschutes is a local pastime on a grand scale. The four of us  floated on a Monday afternoon with hundreds of other people. Hmm, we understand Bend’s high unemployment rate.  With Jimmer’s truck loaded up with two cheap floaties, an inflatable kayak and an inflatable raft we hit the river at a crowded park/launching site. Floating the river has become so popular that parking became an issue in the downtown area so the city started providing bus service for floaters. These buses pull trailers so floaters can easily load their tube or floatie on and head back up stream and do it again. The driver helps load and covers them up with a cargo net. Slick and simple. Gravity sport + Mass transit = a whole lot of fun.

Jimmer at the helm of our flotilla

Bryan being towed down the river

Floaters waiting for the bus and trailer to bring them back up river

Living in Bend is an outdoor adventurer’s dream. As Jimmer proved, you can ski in the morning and kayak the river on a July afternoon. Full respect to anyone who is taking runs this time of year. We  spent our five nights in Bend sleeping on a futon in the backyard – open air. We kept our days simple and relaxing. We worked in the shade on the back patio – Debi making cards for Denise (thank you cards for baby shower) and Bryan repairing and cleaning our bikes. We checked out the Bend Farmers Market and a few shops downtown. We took their dog Hazel for walks and had awesome dinners with Denise and Jimmer. Bryan fixed up Denise’s mountain bike and took an evening ride out on the Deschutes River trail for some single track bliss. Denise, Debi and Bryan went out for a walk to check out gardens at The Environmental Center, where Denise teaches gardening, re-use and sustainability. Downtown we enjoyed a summer music festival.

Downtown Bend

Gardens at Denise’s workplace

From Bend, OR we  ride our bicycles to Portland, OR which will take us 2 and half days to make the 185 mile trip. Thanks again Denise and Jimmer for hosting us! We had a great time.



7 Responses to “Bend, OR”

  1. 1 Tony Rygg

    Hey there, I thought you might have accidentally cycled over some precipitous edge and were not having any luck with a 911 call. I will be reading your update(s) this evening with much interest. –tr

    On Mon, Dec 17, 2012 at 12:49 PM,

  2. 2 lynne killey

    ahh. i was just thinking of you. pagosa springs has had 2′ of snow in town over the last weekend and we have shoveled and plowed!

    so nice to hear from you.

    On Mon, Dec 17, 2012 at 1:49 PM,

    • 3 thrubike

      Hi Lynne! Great to hear from you. We have had a couple of storms but not really much of a winter in Vermont. We are missing the the western mountain weather. Enjoy the rest of winter!

  3. 4 Gary & Charee

    Thanks B & D for the update. We were beginning to have withdrawal pains. Glad to see you are still enjoying your trip.

  4. 6 Alice briere kelemen

    Missed you two.Enjoying reading all about your travels.You do a great job.

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