Monday, August 27, 2012

US Hwy 30: Northeastern Oregon

The wildfire smoke was really bad in Baker City yesterday, so I spent the entire day with my head down into a project that some of you will appreciate very soon. (The only hint I'll give you now is that one of your favorite sled dog websites is about to get a major -- and I mean major -- upgrade!)

Driving northwest out of Baker City, US Hwy 30 is separate from the interstate for about 20 miles and offered a pleasant, flat -- though still very smoky -- drive. One highlight was crossing the 45th parallel -- halfway between the equator and the north pole -- which is the latitude at which I typically start enjoying the scenery. Once rejoining the interstate, the road is the usual high speed affair.

I stopped about 30 miles later in La Grande, to visit the folks at Northwood Mfg who made my Arctic Fox camper. I mostly wanted to show them my camper sled and -- based on the many, many inquiries I get about it on a daily basis -- strongly encourage them to add it to their product line. They were very receptive to me and we spent almost an hour together.

Besides making a close inspection of my camper sled, they were quite interested in my satisfactory experience living in my camper throughout the winter in Alaska, with temperatures going as low as -60 degrees. They asked to video me offering a brief testimonial -- which you probably won't be surprised I did in one "take" -- and they gave me a couple of nice caps as souvenirs.

From there, it was a long, steep hill climb, though the presence of green trees suggested better things ahead than I've seen for quite a while. It's funny about the little things you appreciate!

Once over the pass, the road makes a very long descent onto another wide open expanse of land. As always, I tried to imagine what the Oregon Trail pioneers must have thought when they first encountered this view after so many, many miles of grueling travel.

I've stopped in Pendleton and plan to be here for a couple of days… Stay tuned!

Click here to see exactly where I am posting this from on Google Maps.

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