Thursday, September 13, 2012

DAY 23- Redrum, Timberline, & Mt. Hood...

Redrum!  Redrum!  I survived the night at the Timberline Lodge which was featured in the 1980’s hit movie the Shinning that starred Jack Nicholson where he played the axe carrying Johnny that went very crazy.  Actually it was only the outside that they used in that movie but it seems like its reputation has stuck with the Lodge.  But supposedly, they have one of the axes that Jack ran around with in the movie in that outside scene.  For safety’s sake, they keep it behind the front desk (I found out later on); which is literally just a stone’s throw from my room that’s down the hall from the front desk.
Photo- Look out Johnny--- Here's Jeanne!
Supposely the prop that was used in The Shining.
But probably the scariest thing that happened during the night was a 3:30AM call of nature which forced me to climb down from the upper bunk bed in a pitch black room.  I’m trying to feel my way down the end of the wooden bunk bed frame as I’m trying not to pee.  Now THAT’s scary!  I ended up coming back from the shared restroom (I got the cheap rooms at the lodge with bunk beds and shared bathrooms) and opted to sleep in one of the lower bunks.  Hey, I’ve got four twin size bunk beds in my room.  I figure I can jump bed the next four nights and not sleep in the same place if I wanted.  But I’m really thinking I’m going to stay in the lower ones for safety’s sake after this.  There were plenty of the shared restrooms within a short distance of my room.

I got up early and went up to the second floor lobby area.  They had coffee and tea set up for guests to partake of.  It looked pretty but very windy outside and people that went outside were very bundled up.  I thought I would wait inside for the restaurant that serves breakfast starting at 7:30 am. 
I had a wonderful breakfast buffet at the Cascade Dining Room here at the Timberline Lodge.  I had waffles with blueberries, strawberries, and raspberries with a bit of whip cream.  Awe!  It was like heaven in waffle territory--- what can I say I LOVE my waffles!
Photo- The wonderful volunteer for the National Parks
that gave the tour of Timberline Lodge.
Next, I hung out until they did the 11AM US Forest Tour about the Timberline Lodge.  The volunteer forest ranger gave us background and some wonderful insider back stories to the building and life of the lodge to present day.  It was fascinating and made the lodge seem even more of a miracle that it was built in the 15 month time frame that it was built in.  They also very much encourage you to touch and enjoy the Lodge.  It is a living historical site.  They talked about Richard Kohnstamm who rescued the Lodge in the mid-1950’s from major disrepair and loving restored it.  He took over the management of the hotel/restaurants portion and made it a national historical site.  His son now manages the hotel/restaurant part today.
Photo- Sign on the Pacific Crest Trail.
Photos- The wonderful scenery along the Pacific Crest Trail.

Next, I went out on the Pacific Crest Trail which is an actual trail in the US that hikers can take from Mexico border to the Canadian border.  In fact, earlier on when I was waiting for the tour to start, two hikers came in with full backpacks that were looking to set down their packs and see if they could find a ride into town to get some supplies for their hike.  I hiked the Pacific crest trail but for only about 2 miles.  It was neat knowing that other hikers had done the whole thing and my steps had followed some of theirs even if but just a short bit.
Photo- Part of the main street area of Government Camp.
Then, I decided to go down to Government Camp.  It’s a small town that’s closest to Timberline Lodge.  It was originally formed when the WPA workers built Timberline Lodge; that was where they stayed as they were working.  At the time the Government Camp at 4000ft. was more accessible than the 6000ft. where the Lodge is.  Currently, Government Camp is where quite a few of the 100+ Timberline workers live.  It’s about 8 miles away. 

I opted to go down to Government Camp to check it out and maybe catch some lunch.  It’s a cute very small ski type of town.  There was one main street with a few restaurants, a couple of hotels, a few ski equipment rental places, a gas station, and one general grocery/liquor store.  Off to the side of that there were a bit of vacation rentals/resorts, and a little bit of apartments.  I found a little store that happened to be open; it’s off season right now with Timberline’s skiing being closed for a two week period right now.  So it was a bit of slim pickings of where you could eat.  It was a choice of a deli or the tavern; and I choose the deli.
Photo- A view of Trillium Lake where there's a wonderful reflection of Mt Hood.

After that I opted to see about possibly burning off the “Grilled Goofy” sandwich that I had; which was basically a Reuben sandwich without the sauerkraut.  I drove over the short distance over to the Trillium Lake where I took some wonderful pictures where Mt Hood reflects into the lake.  I then hiked the 2 miles a hiking path with boardwalk areas over swampy areas that went around the lake.  There were people fishing and paddle boating out on the lake.  There’s also a very good sized camping area at the state park that surround the lake.
Photos- Various interiors of the Timberline Lodge.

I drove back to the Lodge where I proceeded to go around on a self-guided tour of the art that is here in the public areas of the Timberline Lodge.  A majority of the 1930’s original art pieces are part of the WPA when the Lodge was built; quite a few have been lovingly restored.  There are oils paintings, carved wood reliefs, inlaid wood art and watercolors.  Some of the art is from the 1950’s when the Lodge was restored.  It all fits in well with the rustic atmosphere of the Lodge and then combined with all of the wrought iron details it makes for a wonderful tour.
Photo- Ram's Head Bar on the 3rd floor of Timberline's Octagon.
Next, I had dinner up at the Ram’s Head Bar and ended up visiting with a couple from Bend, OR.  I was trying to get the insider info. on what not to miss in the area.  Shawnee and Bruce were very helpful and I guess that Bruce is an avid wind sailor.  When I mentioned that I was a bit disappointed I didn’t see any wind surfing in Hood River.  He asked if the water was calm.  Yes, I said it was like glass.  That’s why he said it needs to be real chopping and really windy for the wind surfers.  The windy-ier the better!  Well, that explains it and here I thought they were all out to dinner!

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