Hell’s Canyon… OR/ID

Monday, August 6th, 2007

Funny name as I would rather call it here “Heaven Canyon”. But, that is just me… I am walking on air since we have been here… the walls have dropped off my surroundings, the spirit is light, the air breathable and there is a constant smile on my face! We are in the Desert… so it is the Oregon High Desert, but still, this is the Desert, feels like it, looks like it! No one will change my opinion on this.

I know that for most of you Google Earth is old, very old news. Well, I just got it! I have even learned how to save it and post it here… so now we will have zillions of maps. For the few that join me, this will also make it easier to find the campsite. For those that someday are planning to visit the same areas… well, you will never get lost again! Right?

The Columbia River is history as they say, here comes the Snake River! And again, as I have experienced it before, an incredible area to be in, and… no one is here!!! We have only ridden to the Dam on the Idaho side and a quick visit to Halfway which was empty, and I can already see that this has been a hidden treasure… will be here for two weeks… I hope. There is a limit to stay in one site: 14 days

Doing my homework definitely paid off… even better when we stopped at the ‘Interpretive Center” and by accident met “Pauli” from the BLM office, things then really looked up. She designed these campsites herself not too long ago, including the BLM map that covers her region! What an awesome woman which will go back to visit and learn the History of the Oregon Trail, with reenactments, a play… many… well, they did not have cameras then, did they? Is that good Karma or what? I have to be honest about this however… I would have gone the wrong way on the Snake River looking for those campsites… I was not aware that here the Snake River turns around and flows north… minor detail.

The fires. There has been many fires… we saw one coming in, the pictures will be hazy. Not as much here as toward the Hell’s Canyon Dam where I was told that already 70,000 acres have burned. The fire did come through here as it has left its mark, and yesterday was the first day they opened the road to the lookout which will ride soon, on our way to Joseph.

Nice gravel road taking us to the sites where I had to walk around with a compass trying to find a clearing of 140.3 degrees North… for the Dish! No phone reception… but we have fast speed Internet. Technology… which I cannot leave behind anymore. Carved into the rocks is this old tunnel originally carved for the trains, tall as you can see… we needed to go through it.

As I was turning around, Spirit started growling. I did not hear anything, only when looking again toward the tunnel did I see those two Aliens riding toward us… Welcoming committee? A bit spooky… Turned out to be a couple young lady campers from a couple miles away on their Honda Rukka (? Please correct me if the name is wrong). Perfect timing!

The road to the Dam is not only picturesque, but a marvel of engineering and of an incredible asphalt quality. Somehow I always notice… whether on two wheels or four, in our case on three, there is no doubt that you will enjoy the ride… the drive…

 

But no guard rails… which reminds me that it is due time again to check all the nuts and bolts on the rig… Andy, Dauntless… “thank again”. I have truly almost regained total confidence riding… we need to keep it this way! Lets not go there.

The further we went in, the hazier it was. I truly thought that the pictures would not turn out at all, but, I actually personally like them, it is giving the Canyon a sense of mystery… somehow a stage effect… Very few cars, a couple motorcycles, the Dam is the end of the road… I met a family from France, Iowa, Ohio… and yes, they all took pictures of Spirit.

I had written that I would take pictures of Spirit riding. So here are a couple doing about 50 mph. We really don’t go faster than that, two lane roads, much to see…

So just imagine him with these two motions every four to five seconds! Looks straight… passed now where his windshield was, he has to be ahead of me he thinks… and then a quick glance, all is cool, back to looking ahead. That’s my buddy!!!

Will post pictures from Halfway next time, nice little town… with what I hear a nice little Restaurant called Mimi which only serves dinner on Saturday nights. Thursday and Friday, breakfast and lunch only… closed the rest of the time. I would have loved THAT schedule when I was working. Might try talking them into letting me cook the Saturday night dinner sometime… have not met them yet.

Till next time… be well.

Ara and Spirit

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Ara Gureghian 853 Vanderbilt Beach Rd #245 Naples Fl 34108

Thank you…

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2 Responses to “Hell’s Canyon… OR/ID”

  1. TexasShadow Says:

    Oh, Ara. The photos…. places I’ve been and want to be, now and tomorrow…. and instead I’m here. It is a physical and psychic pain and longin.

    Like you, I too am immersed in my surroundings. That place that is ‘home’ to us all, yet we as a species more and more deny it to ourselves. I’ve spent decades trying to understand the ‘why’. And at a few points have been so frustrated that I’ve had to isolate myself from my own fellow beings, choosing to be immersed in that which gives me, and all of us, life.

    You, I and a few others join the small circle of humans that decry our current trends and try to salvage what is left, reminding other people who and what we really are and the interconnectedness: Walt Whitman, Thoreau, Edward Abbey, Rick Bass, Mark Twain, Teddy Roosevelt, E.O. Wilson…..

    I suspect that is why you write your private thoughts, why I do, why Abbey did, and all the others.

    To keep that spark alive, in us, in all of us.

  2. Bryon Says:

    They’re called “Ruckus”. They’re great little scooters that will take you anywhere. I once came across a blog of a guy that rode across the US on one. He couldn’t take the freeways, so it made for interesting treks through the back roads.

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