Thursday, July 17, 2014

Disconnecting...Just For A Minute.

Mike and I love our internet. It ranks way up there on our "must" list, right behind electricity (only because that's necessary for the internet), and right before air conditioning (who needs it when you can Google "how to stay cool?"). 

But without being disconnected, you can't fully appreciate being connected. And this is totally one of the biggest reasons we love camping. Camping reminds us to be grateful for everything we have in life - our health, running water, electricity, our pets, our world, and of course, the internet.

So on a random weekday, after we'd spent hours silently staring at our respective lap tops, we decided to take off and explore one of the Cascades lakes - a series of lakes and reservoirs off the Cascades Lakes Scenic Byway. I immediately started planning the food, because if you're car camping (versus backpacking), there are no excuses for eating crappy food. I mean, you need something to make you feel better about having to deal with a pit toilet. 

Fresh figs and honey goat cheese, wrapped in prosciutto. We're fancy camping!

Cheating at dessert, thanks to Trader Joe's

We decided to go to Crane Prairie Reservoir, which is waaaay on the other side of Mt Bachelor (but had promises of few mosquitoes and an amazing view). We passed about a million other campgrounds on the way there. The really great part, was that even though this was one of the furthest campgrounds from our house, it still only took us an hour to get there. All these super close, beautiful places to explore, are totally the reason we picked Bend, Oregon as our new home.

Crane Prairie Reservoir with the Three Sisters Mountains in the background.

There are tons of sites (140) at this campground, and we probably counted only 15 campers other than ourselves, so we had our pick. We ended up choosing a site that backed up to the forest, hoping we'd see some wildlife.

Our campsite (left), flanked by an enormous downed tree. I loved how the
tree was growing in the rock and still has boulders entwined in the roots!

The forest was really beautiful and since sunset is so late up here (around 9pm), we had lots of time to hike around. We looked for mushrooms, but the ones we found were sort of dried out, as it hasn't rained up here in a few weeks. But I'm not complaining! I love being on the dry side of Oregon.

Exploring rock formations near our campsite

What can I say, I love tree stumps.

Searching for a good spot to fish

We only spent one night and headed back to our pets early the next morning, but not before Mike caught these beautiful pictures of the sunrise:

love the mist off the lake!

We returned home from this beautifully cool alpine lake to a heat wave back in Bend. A house without air conditioning, that can be deadly for bunnies. So we bought SJP an air conditioning unit, and in the meantime, made her an ice cube tray, which she greatly appreciated!

SJP in her ice bath. She loved it and licked the ice cubes.

SJP's freshly cleaned pen with the air conditioning unit. She is one lucky bunny!

We needn't have worried about the heat, because later that week, it freaking hailed. One second it was 85 degrees out, and the next thing I know, Mike's calling me from outside, "I think it's hailing!" 

And now we're off to Chicago, where they're having a cool summer. Climate change, anyone?