Thursday June 14 – Day 7 of our Epic Pacific Northwest RoadTrip
We were up early… wanted to see the sunrise light on those Lassen mountain peaks.
Found the views equally as pristine in the am as they had been in pm. The trail we chose to hike (bumpass hell – 3 mile hike…no joke that’s the trails official name) was closed due to snow ( still about 4-5 feet still on the ground)As were most of the trails in the upper park… June 14th is still late winter…maybe early spring here. Drove on to see Mt Shasta via hwy 89 and it was amazing to see the glacial peaks reflecting the sunshine from over 75 miles away. It’s a biggen for sure at over 14k feet! Awesome to watch it get bigger and BIGGER… and BIGGER in the windshield as we drove over an hour straight at it.
Due to time…we jumped on the I-5 northbound for the 100 miles left to reach southern Oregon and a delightful lunch in Ashland, at the standing stone brewery ( patio soup, sweet – sweet potato fries & salads) sat out back on their deck… in the perfect sunshine – a cool 72F for the afternoon high…overlooks a super cute college town with an amazing historic and artsy downtown district of upscale shops and eateries and galleries.
Home to Southern Oregon University it has great green spaces and river walk – lots to do for sure. Jessica decided to transfer from Tennessee Tech to SOU pretty fast… 🙂 Just kidding Tyler !
We drove onto Crater Lake National park after about 2.5 hours of two lane mountain roads the temps had dropped 20 degrees but the sun was still high and bright when we arrived at 4pm. The visitors center on the lake rim was still partially covered in 15-20 feet of snow pack as we’re the sidewalks and parking areas ! Crazy deep snow still for mid-June ! Avg snowfall is over 570 inches a year and the blue color of the lake is the deepest and brightest I’ve ever seen!
The deepest freshwater lake in America(1800 +feet) this unique natural wonder is a “must see” for southern Oregon RoadTrips! Take the road west and east on the rim if they are open… ( the east rim was still closed when we were there due to snow) the elevated 7500-8100 feet views of the surrounding lakes and volcanic peaks of the southern Oregon Cascades are epic in their beauty and panoramic vistas.
I think we could actually see Mt Shasta in Northern CA from there. The camera was out and going most of the 3 hours we spent there. Great trails and drives for all ages and stages to enjoy! Would have loved to take a boat tour but they were not running yet due to snow.
Continued on North to Eugene OR and took Hwy 97 up to Hwy 58 – which wound its way down and across some beautiful valleys and peaks and raging river towns. Slow and winding the road is a perfect way to unwind and open the windows for some fresh air and plenty of pull offs for pictures of the cascades and their treasures of beauty and timeless views.
Eugene was a rest stop for the evening and our Shiloh Inn ( pacific northwest hotel chain) off of I-5 was a great and affordable place to crash and grab some dinner. At $69 per night their rates were excellent as was the clean rooms, free wi-fi and excellent attached local food / diner. Things were quiet and I was fine with that… long day, long drive.
I was amazed at how cold the peaks and passes remained… the lodge at Crater Lake NP was still drifted with 20 feet of snow, roads were still closed and at Lassen Volcanic NP, the two road side lakes were frozen solid in mid-June. Meanwhile… Nashville was melting under 108F heat… I think I like the cold better 🙂
We crashed in our comfy little room and Jessica and Tyler had their evening Skype session and as they giggled and laughed and generally caught up… well that’s… all I can remember, or will write down here… 🙂
Seattle part 2 tomorrow !