Sun River, Oregon

Sandy and Mike took 12 of their kids and grand-kids to the resort at Sun River, Oregon, to celebrate Sandy's 80th birthday.
Sunriver is similar in concept to Sea Ranch, on the Mendocino coast -- it's about 4000 homes, plus common facilities like swimming pools, tennis courts, restaurants, etc. About a quarter of the homes are full-time residents, but most of the homes are rented out most of the time. (All year, too; Mount Bachelor ski area is close by.) We rented two large houses right along the Deschutes River for the week, as we have a lot of water enthusiasts in the group. The stretch of river behind the houses runs quite slowly, and is perfect for kayaks, paddle boards, etc.

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But not very far away, the river goes through some wild canyon-like areas, not suited for boaters, rafters, etc. Most of the serious white-water rafting operations are further downstream from Sunriver, and about half the family gave that a try.

Here's some pictures of our week at Sunriver.

At the end of the week, the family headed back to the Bay Area, while Mike and Sandy moved a little farther north to the home of some friends who live in Bend. (These are former East Bay folks who moved to Oregon several years ago.) They were joined by a couple who live in Washington state, but are also formerly from the East Bay. It was a good reunion, including some hikes into the National Forest lands all around Bend, and a visit to a nearby artsy-cutesy town (called Sisters).

Leaving Bend, Mike and Sandy headed over to the coast, and the resort town of Cannon Beach, with its famous Haystack Rock out in the bay. They made a side trip out into the nearby forest to a famous restaurant, called Camp 18, which is built from the dining hall of an old logging camp. (Of interest to builders, the ridge beam of the dining room is the longest and largest solid wood in the United States - that's about 25 tons up there over the diners heads!

Now Mike and Sandy just slowly slid down the coast, heading for home. One obligatory stop was at the famous Tillamook Creamery, but a first for Mike and Sandy was at the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area. These dunes, up to 500 feet high, are the largest expanse of coastal sand dunes anywhere in North America. The first night on the road was fun,too, in that we haven't seen a telephone like the one in our motel room in YEARS!

Mike and Sandy continued their drive south along the coast, stopping for lunch with Sandy's nephew, last seen about 13 years ago. An interesting museum in town features exhibits made entirely by stuff washed up on the beach - the near one is entirely of glass, while the one in the back is all plastics. Then it was on down the rocky Oregon coast, through the big Redwood trees around Eureka, and on home.
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