Hello and happy fall to you all! Certainly has felt like fall to us as we spent the week in Bend with chilly weather and a lot of furnace usage. In fact, the same mountain Heather ran her 50k on last weekend was covered in snow this week – it dumped down the day after her race! A week before the race and it would have been smoked out, and a week after it would have been snowed out! Crazy lucky timing!
We left off last week having just parked in the woods next to our friends Kym and Kevin. Wednesday was a pretty relaxed day in the “neighborhood”, partly because it was cold outside and Bertha was so warm and cozy. We spent a lot of that morning being productive in our pj’s before finally being coerced to come outside. Kym and Kevin loaded us and their two dogs up in their truck and we drove a couple miles from our camp to Tumalo Falls. It’s a short hike up to see the falls, with views from both the bottom and from the top. We walked about a mile up a gorgeous, lush trail, taking in the smells and sights and taking a few pics of the falls. It was soooo nice to be out in nature and it couldn’t have been prettier in the area. We headed back for another group dinner and movie night (this time Midnight in Paris, love that movie) in casa de Kym and Kevin (@33_and_free).
Thursday was some of the same, waking up blissfully in the woods before tackling a little productivity after breakfast. JB headed out for a nice little 10 mile run before we cleaned up and headed into town on the motorcycle (brrr) to meet Kym and Kevin. They had pulled out of our boondocking spot today in order to run some errands and prepare to leave for South Carolina the next morning. We met for happy hour at a nice sushi spot in town (5 Fusion Sushi…we hadn’t had sushi in ages!) and then headed to a cute little coffee shop/bar after dinner for a post dinner drink with a river view. Before the sun set, we said our goodbyes and headed back to our campsite on Eeyore, carefully dodging the deep crevices on the dirt road where Bertha was parked.
On Friday we spent the day almost entirely inside Bertha. With Kym and Kevin gone and another chilly day outside, we spent our day getting work done with the curtains open, remembering to look up and stare out into the beautiful woods outside from time to time. As we cuddled up to watch a movie that evening, we awaited the arrival of new friends into the wooded neighborhood. Around 9pm, Reet and Julie Singh (@wherethewildsinghsare) pulled up in their Class C motorhome with a tow trailer, just like us! We helped them pull into an easy spot right next to us, since it was too dark to really scope out the best spot at that point. We greeted each other with some brief chatting before we all retreated to our warm homes, agreeing to hang out tomorrow.
The next morning, another full time couple that we know pulled in to join the RV neighborhood. We met Brett (@rvfever) and Amy (@bonita_vida_) Tomlinson this past April, the last time we were in Bend. They’ve been full timing in their really nice Winnebago View (it’s 24 feet of awesomeness) for over a year now with their two dogs. Brett is really active in cycling, mountain biking, and running so we often have a lot of fun comparing activities with each other as we travel the country. Once they got settled in, the Tomlinsons and the Singhs went out for a mountain bike ride…we couldn’t join since we don’t have mountain bikes (sad face). Instead, JB headed out for what was supposed to be a 16 mile run but turned into over 18 miles as he got lost on the trails. In order to get back to Bertha, he had to traverse through a ravine and some shrubs, scratching his legs up in the process. Heather headed out for a leisurely, short 5 mile run through the trails, feeling really happy to get out in these beautiful woods. Upon everyone’s return to camp, we commenced an “around the world” happy hour. We started with a beer squeezed into Bertha, then moved into the Singhs’ RV (which is named Miles), and finished the evening at the Tomlinsons’ RV (Rigatoni, or Tony for short).
We decided not to miss out on any more mountain biking fun, so on Sunday morning we took the Tomlinsons’ car into town to rent a mountain bike for JB (Amy decided not to go today and let Heather borrow her super nice bike for the day). Just after noon, the five of us set out for what promised to be a challenging 27 mile loop around Mrazek Trail. It couldn’t have been a prettier day as we started the ride, and a few miles in, we started climbing. A lot. From about mile 6 to mile 16, we climbed close to 3,000 feet…and it was tough! Brett and the Singhs spend a lot of time mountain biking, but Heather found herself falling behind and being pretty exhausted by the time we hit the top. We were also told that the descent was going to be difficult and technical, so we (The Burhos) decided to split off from the group and head back the way we came, knowing it was a smoother, less technical trail. 6 hours and 30 miles since the start of our ride, as we approached camp, Brett drove up behind us on the road to offer us a ride the last mile. Heather gladly took it, as she was totally spent and in the middle of a mental breakdown. It was a breathtakingly beautiful ride, but Heather wasn’t mentally or physically prepared for the challenge, especially since she hasn’t been cycling lately! Back at camp, we loaded up Bertha and drove to town for a dump station water refill since we were bone dry! We threw on some dirty clothes to save time and met the group back at Deschutes Brewery for a post ride meal and beer – we were famished by then! After dinner we made a last stop at Bonta for some fresh gelato before we said our goodbyes – the Tomlinsons and Singhs heading back to the RV neighborhood in the woods and the Burhos urban boondocking in town. Man, were we ready for a good night’s sleep!
The following morning we slept in the latest we’ve slept in in a while, finally rolling out of bed at 10:00am. We were still feeling pretty spent from yesterday’s ride! We started the day with some coffee and some of JB’s world famous French toast before we were ready to tackle our day. JB got to work on training plans, while Heather did the weekly laundry and cleaning. The Singhs came to town and ended up parking near us for a joint laundry date, a first for us! Once the chores were done, the Singhs went to run some more errands while we stayed in the area, lunching on gyros at The Lot – a super hip collaboration of food trucks with a central seating area. A few hours later, we met the Singhs once again for one last happy hour at Sunriver Brewery. We know we’ve said it a lot lately, but it’s been so much fun to meet other full-timers and compare notes. Julie and Reet have only been full time for a few months but have already done so much and plugged right into the community, it was a lot of fun to get to know them.
We slept in the neighborhood across the street from the brewery and got up early this morning with plans to hit the road for Portland asap. Which we did successfully and seamlessly…until we got about 30 miles outside of Portland. As we pulled into Sandy, OR for lunch, the front brakes started shaking and making some pretty gnarly noises. We decided to pull into an auto repair shop asap, which is where we are now, awaiting all new brakes, rotors, and seals for a cool $850. Bertha’s last big driving day and she decided to make it fun for us! Ugh. We’re hoping the repairs go quickly and easily, as we have a flight out of Portland first thing tomorrow morning. Our plan is to park Bertha at a friend’s house then fly to Denver tomorrow morning for a wedding, returning on Friday. So fingers crossed that it all goes smoothly and we’re able to get Bertha back on the road stat! Life on the road is always an adventure!
Total RV Trip Miles: 22,238