Today was actually the second day off, but the third day of the trip. Up for breakfast at the Bend Black Bear Diner. Black Bear is a regional diner chain with locations throughout the West. I first discovered the restaurants in Bend when I worked here in 2006. Food is OK, prices are reasonable, and portions are American-sized. You will not leave hungry from the Bear.
Next was a trip up to Pilot Butte. The Butte is an extinct cinder cone in the middle of Bend that’s been turned into a park. Rising 500 feet above Bend, there’s a road to the top popular with hikers and cyclists. It’s one of my favorite spots to visit in Bend.
The view looking West:
Broken Top and Three Sisters on the left, Mt. Hood on the middle right. I noticed the trees have started to grow up some.
For the return trip I elected to take US 97 north to Madras, then US 26 west to Portland. This was the route I’ve taken many times, but it had been long enough that I’d forgotten some of the scenery along the way. I had a chance to look at the geology with new eyes given what I ‘d learned the day before.
Out of the high desert and into the Cascade foothills, then face to face with Mt. Hood:
This is the east side near the junction of US 26 and OR 35. Just up the road off OR 35 is the Barlow Road, the overland portion of the Oregon Trail that allowed wagons to cross the Cascades. Prior to construction in 1846 wagons had to float down the Columbia river. I think it’s cool to have a living (drivable) piece of history here.
And that’s about the limit of what I want to do with two days off. Lots of drive time but a really enjoyable respite. I’m still smiling.
Portland Studio Building
Saw this building in downtown Portland at SW Taylor & 9th. Classical composers names are above the second-floor windows with busts below.