Mini Vacation Photo Essay

Earlier this month Tim and I took an extended backpacking trip in southeastern Oregon. We chose a three day loop in the Strawberry Mountains. The timing was perfect because I had just quit my job and all of the anger, anxiety, and frustration that had been brewing inside of me escaped (hopefully for good!). It was a wonderful vacation, especially since we were visiting an area that was new to us. Here are some photos from the trip:

We passed through the Biglow Canyon Wind Farm and the Klondike Wind Farm on the way to our destination. Driving past all the turbines was incredibly mesmerizing. They just kept appearing as we approached the top of a hill. When we looked behind us, all we could see were turbines dotting the landscape. And, it was super windy (which makes all those turbines happy!).

As we continued on, we entered into the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, which is essentially a 14,000-acre park in eastern Oregon renowned for its well preserved, remarkably complete record of fossil plants and animals. The scenery was stunning:

Next, we finally (after a good six hours+ of driving) started our hike! Above is a shot of all the gorgeous wildflowers we saw in the first few miles of the trail.

And then we climbed, and climbed, and climbed, and climbed until we reached almost 7,000 feet. It was a pooper of a climb, but the temperature was hovering in the mid 60′s, so it was perfect!

Then I snuck around in the bushes taking pictures of Tim cooking our dinner. We had gorgeous views across the valley:

And a lovely sunset too:

Lots more climbing on day two led to more views:

We actually encountered quite a bit of snow and Tim had to kick steps into it so we could safely traverse the trail. We were happy to make it to the top of a saddle and rest:

Tim is crafty with the camera so we are out of focus here, which is probably best for everybody.

We reached our campsite,

and made dinner.

On day three we crossed lots of creeks,

Goofed around,

and enjoyed nearly 48 hours of total solitude. We didn’t see a single soul the entire hike until the last two miles of the loop. It was wonderful!

On the drive back to Portland, we stopped and admired the Painted Hills:

The weekend was the best way to celebrate escape from a dismal job and kick off new beginnings for the future. You can check out more photos from our trip here (for example, you might want to see the chocolate cake we made while camping!).

I hope everybody enjoys the upcoming weekend!

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8 thoughts on “Mini Vacation Photo Essay

  1. Oh I LOVE the John Day formation!! We went there for a geology field trip for a weekend in college (we were looking at fossil soils). I’ve been in some of those exact spots where you took pictures from! So pretty! :D

  2. Absolutely beautiful scenery! And the food looks good too :)

    Best of luck with the future job endeavors. I know it can be scary but if you feel that its the right thing to do, then it probably is!

  3. That is the bluest sky I’ve ever seen! And I’m so love in with wind turbines. I’d never seen them until I took a high school trip to the West Coast, and I remember being mesmorized. I wish we had those around here, but I hear we don’t get enough wind. Boo!

    BTW, I’m always so impressed with the amazing food you whip up while camping.

  4. So beautiful…do you sell any of your prints? If so, I’d definitely be interested in purchasing some. My mother loves mountain views and shots like these would be perfect in her new home…it’d make a great present!

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