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Saturday, August 31, 2013

LIFE AND THE THINGS THAT MATTER MOST

As I get older, it becomes much more clear to me what really matters in life.  I mean what REALLY matters.  It's not the things, the whats, or the must haves.  What really matters, are the memories that are made and who they are made with that make you feel like you are really living.

Recently, I was lucky enough to do what really matters and build some special memories.  My college roommate and good friend was able to escape the hustle and craziness of the city of Phoenix, Arizona and join me in the beautiful serene central Oregon.  With less than a week to work with, it was very difficult to narrow down what activities to pursue.  It's the one true set back about living here.  It's sometimes very difficult to decide what to do since there is SO much to do.  A very good problem to have if you ask me.  

On top of the priority list:  fishing.  Second:  riding the trail bikes.  We were able to do both and quite a bit more. 



The first night called for cold local beer and fire pit food.


Thanks to our generous neighbor, 
we were able to hit one of the high lakes in search of kokanee.


A beautiful morning on the lake.



Just as the sun started showing up for the day, 
the first fish started biting.


Landing one of the many fish of the morning


Too dark to keep, but this kokanee was very pretty.


Breakfast buffet for the fish.


The 'secret sauce'.  
It would be interesting to know how they actually collect this stuff.




Our fishing ride


Our most excellent captain, kokanee finder, and his first mate.


We were able to catch our limit in just a couple of hours.

 
Nice catch!

That evening after kokanee fishing, 
we hit the Crooked River just east of Bend.



The Crooked River is a tributary of the Deschutes River.  It is 125 miles long and winds its way through miles of massive volcanic canyons.




After a short lesson, this one caught on easily.


Nice fish!

After a long day of fishing, 
we hit one of our favorite brew pubs in town, 
Worthy Brewing Company.


Making every dish from scratch,  
Worthy makes fantastic pizza in their wood-fired stone hearth oven.

The next morning, we loaded up the pontoon boats and headed east for some bass fishing on one of my favorite rivers, 
the John Day River.

After dropping off the bike shuttle down river, 
we headed up river to our put in spot.



Average river flows this time of year are normally around 180 cfs (cubic feet per second).  
With lack of rainfall recently, today they were below 50.




Like the Crooked River, the John Day River meanders through volcanic canyons.  It is 284 miles long and is undammed along its entire length.  
The John Day is the second longest free-flowing river in the contiguous United States. 











The John Day River is a well known small mouth bass fishery.  
It is not uncommon during the peak season to catch 100 bass in a day.


Because of the very low water levels, 
we spent quite a bit of time dragging the boats through 
rocks and inches of water.

One of the boulder patches we muscled the boats through.



The evening sky was magnificent.



A thunderstorm loomed nearby and left gorgeous skies.


Saturday we took a day to clean up the gear and take in another brew pub in town
the Crux Fermentation Project.

 
Crux has beautiful copper tanks onsite for their brewing.


While at Crux, 'Cycle Pub' stopped in.  
This unique vehicle is well known in town.  
The riders drink beer while enjoying sites around Bend.


The small version

Sunday morning we hit the mountain bike trails 
near Mount Bachelor.









Kate loves to run the six mile trail.

Tumalo Creek


After the mountain bike ride, 
we loaded up the dirt bikes and headed up to the Tumalo Falls area where we took the back roads to 
Three Creeks Lake near Sisters.


Three Creeks Lake has a small store and boat rentals.

 


Tam McArthur Rim surrounds the lake









I will never forget these trips.  The best part was being able to share these experiences in a place that I love with great people. 



"A friend is one that knows you as you are, understands where you have been, accepts what you have become, and still, gently allows you to grow."  --William Shakespeare