Oh Portlandia, I hope you feel better soon

Sunday March 18, 2012

I’m so glad I made the drive back down to Portlandia and went to Mount Hood Meadows today. It felt like I was going backwards instead of moving ahead in my trip, but it was well worth it. It was snowing all morning and coming down fairly hard on my half hour drive to the mountain. It was a Sunday so there was some traffic and they were using overflow parking lots. The first decision I had to make was to ride a bus from the parking lot, or take a nice long uphill hike from the parking lot to the base area. I decided since hike-to terrain was the new thing I do now, I’d take the hike. It was a nice long uphill walk through the woods. Just enough to get my blood flowing and my muscles loosed up. The really cool thing was that as far as it was away from the base area I was able to ride my board back down the hill, into the parking lot, and almost right up to my car door.

As I already said, I’m glad I made the trek back down to Mount Hood. That place holds a memory for me that I’ve long forgotten, so it was nice to refresh it with a new, exciting memory. The weather was great winter weather. It was nice and cold so there was no threat of the precipitation turning to rain. It was either snowing or completely sunny. It kept alternating back and forth like Mother Nature flipping a light switch. It got quite windy at the very top toward the end of the day. It might have been scarier windy than the day at A-Basin with JO. The difference is I was still able to have a blast. That day at A-Basin somehow had the potential for misery any given minute. Something I haven’t seen yet this winter were free cookies at the mountain. I was in the lodge and a guy that worked there was walking around with a giant bin of fresh made cookies handing them out! It was the nice surprise score of the day. I thought it was my lucky day, but apparently not. The guy I shared my free cookie session with said that is the way it is every day. Oh yea.

Turns out that the Portlandia Posse blew me off, so I rode alone all day. I spoke to the South Korean Mafia early in the morning and he said he wasn’t feeling too well. It might be pains from all the balloons he is rat-holing for his upcoming exodus/immigration to South Korea. All the best, I hope they have a blast!

After I rode almost all the way back to my car, I changed, packed up, lit a cigar, and plugged Spokane, Washington into my GPS. Mount Hood is a weird place. As soon as you get to the base of the mountain there is no sign that winter was ever there. I guess that is why they have a ski area that is open year round. Once out of the mountain range the transition from rainforest-like mountains into vast prairies was remarkable. Before I got too far into the drive I made a phone call to my buddy in Spokane to make sure I could still get a free breakfast out of him. I wasn’t going to go 8 hours out of my way if I couldn’t get a free breakfast. Turns out I can, and we are, tomorrow morning. I’m looking forward to it. After breakfast I’ll be hitting the road for an all day drive to Whistler in British Columbia. I made arrangements for a place to stay for 4 nights on the mountain. They currently have some great last minute, end of the season deals. It is probably at least a 9-hour drive from here to BC. I hope to make it all in one day, I should be able to, even with the cruise control set.

Apparently I spent a lot of todays drive on the Lewis and Clark trail again. I can’t see what the big deal was about this expedition of theirs. There are nice big, wide, paved, blacktop roads everywhere they went. Big deal. Name a road after me already. The drive today was another scenic and picturesque one. Being so close to the left coast I saw a beautiful sunset tonight that rivals the sunrises we have on the right coast.

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