Wednesday, December 17, 2014

~Part 6~Alameda Vacay Ride~

Russell spent childhood days here in the Tavern.  Now the local Museum.
I will post a bit more of this place later. 
So I arrive at Russell and Pams' place, get inside their new home, which is decorated as they have always dreamed doing for the past few decades, and I get the tour.  They pulled out everything from storage, old photographs of family and friends and pieces of their lives' history are on display.  Their front living area looks out onto country property and the Rogue River. As soon as I am shown around I am swooped away for the first day's tour.

After spending a short tour at Russell's old digs (I will post more later on that), we went over to the Butte Creek Mill.   The Butte Creek Mill is located in Eagle Point, Oregon and dates back to 1851. It still has original gears, pulleys, belts, and all the workings of a flour mill, and it is one of two remaining water powered mills in Oregon.   Very historic.  Not too many places these days that use 100 + year old equipment.  Flour and other home goods are sold here still and with the modern techno gear we call the computer, goods can be bought through their website.  Who would of thunk back then that this would happen?

Butte Creek Mill in Eagle Point, Oregon
The wood beams are amazing. 
A fun corner inside. 
Still used for local meetings and gatherings.
This room is below where the river runs through.  
For you gear heads.  All wood.  
The river is running below us and it can be seen under those planks pictured above. 
Water powered grinder for grain. 
I guess the laundry machine had to go someplace...
Black Smith tools.

You can see repairs to the stone mortar over the years.
This alone is history. 

Sometimes ya just need a bath. 

The freezer sits across the street from the Mill.  Yup, this is the old ice house brought to you by horses and carriages back when.

This house is on the side of  Highway 62 Eagle Point or so. Known as the Wood House is was constructed in 1870.  It is historically maintained and I love the porch.  I can't imagine being so alone back when though.  If memory serves me well, Russell had said it was moved from it's original spot across the street to where it sits now.

The Wood House

As we went around we got hungry and went in for some Mexican food.  So did everyone else.  On our way out to find another place to eat we admired some of the hot rods in the parking lot. 

After dinner we took in some wildlife that always seemed to appear on the roadsides every evening. 

Later, at home off the deck, we see it is dinner time for the dogs...

The next day we went to the fish hatchery...

Cutting the fins on Steel Head to mark them.

Here's a little video on what they do:

Then we visited some river frontage and bridges...

A campsite. 

Very pretty here. 

A good selfie at the campsite. 

One of our hikes. 
Another hiking place

A beautiful hiking trail leads to the river. 

Darrell came to visit.  He flew on my finger straight towards me. 
One of the bridges on the hiking trail leads to the Living Stump and the river.

This spot was really beautiful.  The river is extreme in places and the river disappears
goes underground through the tubes.  

This is looking straight down the hillside.
You can spot the river re-emerging around up from the
lava tubes.  Very forceful waters.  

Water coming from one of the tubes. 

The trees growing out from the rocks. 

I am going to leave you here.  I thought I would get more up, however, the loading of pics and film can slow the Blogger system down on certain browsers.  I think I will have just two more posts.  This ride was incredible and going through my photos have been enough for me to already plan another ride in through Mother Nature.  Hope you are enjoying it.  

Til Then,
Happy Rogue River Trailzzz, 

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

~Part 5~ Alameda Vacay~

Seeing Russell and Pam retired and living a farm-like, fishing-life was great and the very day I arrived, we went all over the place to visit places they had planned to show me.  But before I write that post, I am going to give you a little background on those two Luvs and a little of my life knowing them.

Russell & Pam:

We go way back into the 70's.  When I first moved to Southern California from the Bay Area, Pam and Wild Val (Darrell's wife) were my besties, and still are to this day.  Irreplaceable. We met through our significant others at that time back when, and we considered ourselves family.  Depended on each other for many things and spent almost every holiday and weekend together.  We talked to each other on the phone almost daily.  We had our laughs, cries, babies, paid each others' bills at times, and held each other with the death of loved ones.  It would have never crossed our minds not being a part of each other's lives in some way or another. That's not to say we didn't have our squabbles or wonder what the hell we were all doing,  but we seemed to never stray too far from each others' arms.

Not that the other guys couldn't,  but Russell was the one person that could actually have a decent conversation and hold one through.  Even if we had different opinions, our exchanges were civil to each other with dual respect.  We never got angry at each other in our talks.  Some times when I went to visit Pam, I ended up in the living room with Russell having it out in conversation.  Politics always seemed to be a good component to get us inflamed in what was to be a never ending evening, and him being a Viet Nam Vet, had a lot of knowledge of first hand political living.   He was also the only guy that worked a steady job for decades and had a goal to get out of town when he reached retirement age and followed through on it.  He was one of those quiet guys, with a voice if that makes sense.  Someone who made you think.

Photos of Viet Nam Buddies in Viet Nam during the War

Airborne Certificate

A tough tour in Nam brought a silence to him about his time there until later in life when he did finally retire. He never really spoke about his time in the field of war.  However, one day, on the date he helped me pick out my first motorcycle in 2005,  he did.  We were sitting having lunch when he divulged his story.  I don't really remember what brought on the conversation, but there it was. Just like the stories you hear on the History Channel, I heard it at lunch.   Decades later, there I was, sitting across from the table with my friend.  An American Hero.  I always knew he was a Vet, but it never hit me how much of a Hero he was until that conversation for some reason.  The burden he bears....

The garage was a major meeting place back then.  A release for him after the War and very old school... (the real "old school", not today's).   Any one of our garages would do depending on who had what, but that place of bike worship maintenance was mainly Russell's or Darrell's home.  Their garages were set up for the bikes and other tinkering they did in those days.  

Russell working on his bike.

Russell bike tinkering. 

The bike. 
So while they were out in the garage, the girls were inside getting their talk on and having fun listening to music, etc.  Pammy has this laugh that when she starts, it is non-stoppable and infectious.  So needless to say, with all her "zen likeness",  that was put aside for some crazy.

Pam also has a special knack of making a bad situation better.  Always takes a good look at the whole circle and brings that into thought then throws some love on it to make it better.   Sometimes we look at her and wonder how she does it.  "It's just Pam".  

Pam and Wild Val were the Nature girls in the clan and really good with animals and growing things. I tried at that time... didn't do so well back then, I was busy working the 8-5 gig.   But when Pam, Val and I got together and out, we used to go on hikes in the Canyon and ended up at Cooks Corners or The Pally (now called the Silverado Cafe). (Cooks Corner is the biker bar established in the '20s and, it was in the 70's that we all rode there together--and still popular with bikers today).

Russell, the ex, & Pam
trying to show us the new place before
they moved. The only one missing is
Darrell R.I.P.
Wild Val & I are
cracking up at them.
Who would have thought...
With so many memories and life's changes... we all stayed friends through it all.  We all grew up,  some of us got divorced, remarried and some passed away, we all got old, but Russell and Pam got through it all to living retirement together in a beautiful land far far away....
 Shady Cove, Oregon

Pam and Russ today on their river front property set for fishing and just relaxing. 
So there is just a tidbit of our lives as friends.  Russell's memories go way back into Shady Cove, and Pam's are establishing.  In my next post I will show you his childhood play spots and our visits to this beautiful area.  

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