Vacation Travelogue–Bend, Oregon

So, I’ve been on vacation. I don’t do that enough. It’s hard to fully disconnect when you’re self-employed, but I managed to be “offline” for a full five days straight and it was glorious!

Though I know looking at other people’s vacation photos can be thrilling tedious, I thought I’d share just a few so you can experience a little bit of the fun!

We were in Bend, Oregon, which is near and dear to both of our hearts. We absolutely love Bend – it is truly our ideal town. If you are ever looking to plan a vacation that involves skiing, biking, paddling, hiking, running, or just about anything else outdoors – go to Bend! We love it so much that we bought a little vacation getaway there so we can go more often. It’s that good.

Long time readers will remember that we’ve done the Bend vacation house thing before. Rest assured, this time it is going to stick because we’re not trying to relocate away from where our jobs are. We’re going to be true vacation house people.

Here, let me pull out the slide projector and show a bit of why we love Bend and what we were up to on vacation.

We took in lots of gorgeous scenery.

These first photos were taken on a hike called Green Lakes in the Cascade Lakes area. We didn’t make it to the actual green lakes because it was a little far for our aging pup, but, enjoyed ourselves nonetheless. I took  all the photos with my phone and didn’t edit them, if you can believe it or not. (The phone is a Nokia Lumia 1020 Windows Phone).

This is Mt. Bachelor. The skiing in winter is great, and I sure hope I get to ski this winter!

Mt. Bachelor, Bend, Oregon | Test Kitchen Tuesday

This dog loves to hike. There was still snow on the ground, but enough of the trail had melted to be just fine.

Green Lakes Hike | Test Kitchen Tuesday

She also loves to spectate bike races in the grass. This was at the Hullabaloo Criterium bike race in a neighborhood called Northwest Crossing. Maybe she didn’t spectate so much as get belly rubs. But, that’s splitting hairs…

Hullabaloo Bike Race | Test Kitchen Tuesday

We pulled the mountain bikes out of injured reserve.

I sort of joke nowadays and tell people I used to truck on a bike and now just kind of minivan. I used to haul the mail and now I simply deliver the mail. I used to fly and now I coast. You get the picture. I say all that in jest – there will be a day when I truck again, no doubt. A broken kneecap is just a hurdle along the way. You don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone, so appreciate your joints!

Regardless, I spent plenty of time re-acquainting myself with the good ol’ mountain bike and its granny gears. 2Chili was patient enough to bear with me as the some of the strength and a lot of the confidence came back, and by the end of the trip, I was feeling pretty darn good!

This was in Shevlin Park:

Shevlin Park Biking | Test Kitchen Tuesday

And this was in the Phil’s Complex trails, far and away the best mountain biking trail system we’ve ever ridden. The trails are smooth and built by mountain bikers for mountain bikers. It’s been a great place to get the bike legs back. We have mountain bike trails in Seattle, for sure, but they are totally different and full of lots of roots and rocks, so I haven’t been confident enough to try them post knee break. Now, I feel like I can tackle them with a bit of renewed confidence.

Phil's Trail | Test Kitchen Tuesday

We took in more gorgeous scenery.

Love to paddle, SUP, swim, or otherwise play in water? We do! And, so does just about everyone else here.

This was taken at Sparks Lake, which is also in the Cascade Lakes area. We did a short hike with the pooch and then enjoyed some of the clear, cold water. The volcanoes you see are Mt. Bachelor on the left and Broken Top on the right.

Sparks Lake - Bend, OR | Test Kitchen Tuesday

I made a lot of recipes.

This last one doesn’t have to do with Bend so much as that I had a kitchen for the first time in almost two years. So, I have queued up quite a few new recipes to come ‘atcha over the next couple of weeks. Some even involve an oven. Woah.

In funny news, in addition to not having a kitchen for two years due to an ongoing remodel, I haven’t used a microwave in the same amount of time. We were in our new vacation place for over a week before I realized 1) we have a microwave and 2) I can use it! It took a bit of figuring to remember how those crazy contraptions work, but, like riding a bike, it all came back.

And with that, I wish you a good rest of your week, and thanks for sitting through my vacation slide show!

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