Sunday, January 26, 2014

Lower Deschutes Trail Biking Disaster

Went out for what I thought would be a relaxing bike ride along the Deschutes River today and came back exhausted 3 hours after dark with two flat tires.  The ride was beautiful and the cold weather was perfect for riding along the river.  I saw a bunch of historical items along the way and an old homestead but I did not expect the path to be littered with sharp thorns... Click the title to read all about this epic bike ride for me....

Friday, January 24, 2014

Sandy Ridge Biking with the Holm brothers

Today Emily and I joined Chris and his brother Eric for a ride at Sandy Ridge.  We hadn’t been there in a couple years and had heard about all the trail work so were looking forward to checking it out.  It certainly felt a little strange heading up towards Mt. Hood in January with our bikes instead of our skis but this has been the worst ski season in decades with Ski Bowl not evening opening yet.  The weather was beautiful and we biked a really big loop along the ridge and down to start.  We even tried to help a lost dog whose owner had totally ditched him at the top of the descent.  He followed us for a bit but then refused to go any further, worriedly looking for his owner… sad, but the dog kept to the trails and followed people so we knew he’d find his way at some point.  At the bottom Em was a little tired so headed back down to the truck while I continued on with the brothers for another couple rounds.  It definitely felt great to be back on my bike again. 

After the ride Eric took off for home and his wife and twins while Chris joined us at Calamity Janes for large burgers and even larger beers to catch up with us.  He had a great trip to Colorado with Paris and their relationship was going well.  Emily and I told him a bunch about our trip and told him to keep an eye on Facebook for photos.  It sucks living 1.5 hours from Holm but we are glad we get to see him about once a month when he drives north to join us for adventures.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Blazers vs. Nuggets

Tonight Emily and I joined Ben, Tiah, Darren, Jonathan, Jennifer, Donald and a couple others for a Blazers Game.  I left work at 5pm and walked over the steel bridge to meet them all at Red Robin for some food before heading to the game and had them order for me while I was on the walk over.  Emily of course had to fight traffic and find parking so she joined us a few hours later at the start of the game.  We were in the nose bleed section but the game turned out to be really close with us taking a 5 point lead with only about 5 seconds left to play.  It was great to catch up with Ben and Tiah and to find out they are expecting another child - the last according to Ben.  We heard they are going to be moving into a new house soon so we look forward to their housewarming party.  

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Our Honeymoon - Day 25 - Flight Home

With great sadness this was our last morning in Costa Rica before our flight home to Portland through Dalles.  Both of us were pretty bummed leaving such an amazing place in the world.  We had our adventure and put our bodies to the test in Patagonia and in Costa Rica we had seen more wildlife in a week than we'd seen in the last 10 years.  Thankfully our travel was very smooth back to the states and we arrived with all of our luggage and all of our memories.  This was truly a trip we will never forget and the best honeymoon either of us could have imagined.  I love my wife so much!  Click the title to read on and see a few more pics of our amazing resort in Manuel Antonio.  

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Our Honeymoon - Day 24 - Manuel Antonio National Park & Transfer to San Jose

After such a wonderful day relaxing and seeing all the wildlife at our resort I was almost tempted to not get up early and go see Manuel Antonio National Park but I reminded myself I may only be here once so I urged myself out of bed without waking Emily and headed off at 6am.  It was worth the effort as I saw lots of wildlife in the park and some beautiful beaches.  I even arrived back at the resort with enough time to relax one more time at the beach with Emily before we had to pack up and head to San Jose for our return flight the next day.  Click the title to read on...

Friday, January 10, 2014

Our Honeymoon - Day 23 - Enjoying our resort and a couples massage

Today was simply a day to relax for both of us.  Neither of us left the resort although I did spend some time walking up and down the steep hill of the resort looking for wildlife.  We enjoyed an hour long couples massage and had a wonderful dinner after yet another great sunset.  One of the highlights of the trip for me was when my patience paid off and I was able to capture some photos and video of a sloth actually moving about and eating in a tree directly directly above our heads at one of the resort pools. Click the title to read on....

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Our Honeymoon - Day 22- Walk to Maunel Antonio and enjoying our resort

Today was a relaxing day for Emily who was feeling a bit tired after all our adventures.  She remained at the beach resort while I took a short walk into Manuel Antonio to check out the town because I was feeling restless at the beach.  On my walk I spotted the cutest sloth sleeping on coconuts in the trees and also spotted numerous other animals.  When I returned, sweaty, to the resort I joined my wife on the beach for another amazing sunset and some delicious cold run & cokes on the beach.  Click the title to read on...

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Our Honeymoon - Day 21 - Monteverde to Manuel Antonio

Today we were transported from Santa Elena to Manuel Antonio where we would relax at a ritzy resort for the remainder of our Costa Rican experience.  Along the way we spotted howler monkeys, a pair of toucans and stopped to see tons of crocodiles along a river bank below the Panamerican Highway. When we got to our resort we settled in and then headed towards the private beach to relax and enjoy a beautiful sunset over the Pacific.  Click the title to read on...

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Our Honeymoon - Day 20 - Monteverde Cloud Forest and Frog Pond

Today after a wonderful guided tour of the Monteverde Cloud Forest Preserve where we spotted our first sloth, Emily and I went on our own hike up to the Continental Divide and back.  We didn't see many more animals and it rained the whole time but I think it was part of the experience since we were in a cloud forest after all.  We stopped for a quick tour of the "Frog Pond" on the way back to our lodge to check out the various species in the region but it wasn't as cool because they were in enclosures instead of us seeing them in their natural habitat.  Once again we got a visit by our cute Coati friend as we relaxed for the afternoon at our our wonderful private lodge.  Click the title to read on...

Monday, January 6, 2014

Our Honeymoon - Day 19 - Jeep Boat Jeep to Monteverde

Today we were transported via "Jeep-Boat-Jeep" from La Fortuna up into the mountains of Monteverde to Santa Elena where we would stay for the next couple nights while exploring the cloud forests there.  It was an interesting transport across Lake Arenal and bumpy steep ride up into the mountains but the views along the way were fantastic and we even got to see a parrot and pet duck along the way.  The Rainbow Valley Lodge where we stayed was amazing and we made a coati friend before our very interesting night tour of a nearby preserve.  Click the title to read on....

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Our Honeymoon - Day 18 - Cano Negro Boat Tour

We had a boat tour today of the Cano Negro Wildlife Refuge which runs along the border of Nicaragua.  We weren't sure what to expect but it turned out to be the wildlife highlight of our Costa Rica trip.  We saw more wildlife in a half mile stretch of the Rio Frio than anywhere else in the country. I think I took over 500 photos on just this one tour.  We even got to see the extremely rare albino Howler Monkey!  Click the title to read on....

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Our Honeymoon - Day 17 - Sky Adventures Guided Nature Walk, Suspended Bridges, Tram & Zip Line

Today we had our first guided wildlife tour in Costa Rica in the jungle around the massive Arenal Volcano.  Our fantastic guide pointed out our first monkeys and taught us about the local vegetation. We walked across our first hanging bridges and experienced our last bit of adventure on our trip by zip lining at Sky Adventure.  From the zip lines we had great views of Lake Arenal and of the forest below us.  We were even back to our hostel in time to relax in hammocks and grab some drinks.  Click the title to read on...

Friday, January 3, 2014

Our Honeymoon - Day 16 - Rafting the Pacaure River

Today we woke early for our rafting trip down the Pacuare River on the Caribbean side of the country. It was an amazing trip filled with great rapids, waterfalls and our first Costa Rican jungle experience. We didn't see too many animals because we were too busy steering through rapids.  We had a great group in our raft so our guide took us down the gnarliest rapids.  After a great day on the river the rafting company then provided transportation for us to La Fortuna.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Our Honeymoon - Day 15 - Punta Arenas to San Jose and the Adventure Inn Honeymoon Suite

Today was a travel day for us from Punta Arenas to San Jose through Santiago and Panama City.  It was fairly uneventful and we managed to get through customs much easier this time around.  When we got to San Jose it was a quick ride to our hotel where we were hooked up with a honeymoon suite, complete with "congratulations" written on the wall for us!  Click the title to read on....

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Our Honeymoon - Day 14 - Punta Arenas and Penguins

Today we had a relaxing day around exploring the area around the old fishing town of Punta Arenas in Chile, including an amazing visit to a nearby penguin colony.  Although the town was completely boarded up for the holiday we managed to have a great seafood meal before relaxing on our last night at the bottom of the world.  Click the title to read on....