Sunday, August 19, 2018
After a refreshing overnight stay at the Deerwood RV Park in Eugene, we again head north up I-5. We are officially in the Willamette Valley, crossing over the Willamette in Eugene (home of the U. of Oregon Ducks). The smoke from the multiple wildfires hasn’t left us but it’s not nearly as bad as that of Grants Pass. The four lane interstate leads us past Coburg where Marathon class A motorhomes are manufactured. We also pass Brownsville, a quaint town just off the main highway that has a very unusual pioneer cemetery, one that has both pioneers and Native Americans buried in the same location.
The “old” road predating Interstate 5 is oriented north/south US 99 basically following the west side of the Willamette river while I-5 follows to the east. US 99 takes one through all of the main population centers and farm towns via surface street. Traveling US 99 is lovely way to visit the towns of the Willamette Valley. It’s also the wrong way to go if one is in a hurry.
So I-5 takes us in proximity of many towns. We bypass Junction City, Corvalis (home of the Oregon State Beavers), drive through the outskirts of Albany, and exit the interstate in Salem. We head northeast on the Silverton Highway Oregon 213. After driving 15 miles through rolling farmland we arrive at the Silver Spur RV Park just outside of the town of Silverton. We check in at the office and set up in the brand new section of the park. The park’s nice clubhouse/laundry facility as well as great location less than a mile from downtown makes it a draw.
It’s also very close to the Oregon Garden. One must drive right through town in order to visit the beautiful nine fall Silver Falls State Park. So the location couldn’t be better. However, the park is a little crowded and a little dusty as the normally green lawns are dry. It seems this part of Oregon is experiencing a drought.
We visit the Oregon Garden for the umpteenth time. We very seldom visit this time of year so it’s a real treat to see most of the plants in bloom. By the way, zinnias are really showy this time of year!
While here we visit one of our favorites, the Mt. Angel Abbey. We really like to attend Lauds- the priests, monks and seminarians sing Gregorian Chants with 1/2 of them in pews on the left side of the Altar and the other half on the right. One side starts the chant and the other responds. It’s really wonderful to listen to. Unfortunately this time there are no Lauds, no chants as the church is closed for repair.
We even had time to visit a most beautiful Silver Falls State Park. Crowds? It’s the middle of summer, on a weekend so we expect the worst. The day use parking lot was pretty full. In the fall when we normally visit maybe a handful of cars are parked. I’d estimate parking capacity at 400 vehicles and it was more than half full. But not many people where we wanted or could go with our mutzos. Dogs aren’t allowed on the Falls Trail. Since foot traffic was fairly light I’d guess that half the visitors are down in the canyon. Silver Fall itself is over 200′ high. The trail goes behind the fall as it does another farther downstream. As one would expect the falls are still active but the volume of water is much lower than the spring runoff.
Bridge at foot of Silver Falls- and close up…..
Well, well. What have we here? Silverton is having itself an art festival this weekend. Jil is in desperate need of the purchase of a couple of gifts for folks we will be visiting on this trip. We arrive at the local park to run the dogs and lo and behold we are greeted with 100 white canopies! Looks like we found the art festival! We arrived while the vendors were still setting up for the day- in fact some were still eating breakfast. But money talks so a few of them opened up shop early just for Jil. We now have our gifts……………….
Drip………drip………drip………. our hard to open single handle kitchen faucet decided to start leaking a few days ago. I decide to buy repair parts while we are in proximity of Salem since we’ll be there for three days………..I take the valve apart and discover the rubber seats have a chunk missing out of them. I use vaseline and coat the seals and put the valve back together……………. drip…..drip…..drip…..drip! The leak is worse! Jil is unhappy as the drip…drip…drip is driving her bananas. I don’t know who manufactured the faucet so I call Tiffin. Hello? Who made my faucet? Moen? OK, thanks for the info. I call a nation wide plumbing supply company and ask if they sell Moen faucet repair kits…….Maybe…… what you mean “maybe”…… well, it depends…… “depends” on what? Well you have to bring the parts in so we can match them.
Okie Dokie, so the plan is to stop on the way to Silverton since the shop is on the way. We MISS The turnoff! The exit to the street we wanted was not labeled as expected. Not Mission but Detroit Lakes. When we realized we missed the turnoff we went straight to Silverton. The next day I decide to head 16 miles back to Ferguson Plumbing Supply. I stay on country roads as far as possible. The place is located on the outskirts of Salem proper……. but I wind up in the friggin’ country! Must go back but now I’m sorta disoriented. I travel north to a street that I know is on the north side of the street I’m looking for and double back. I finally find THE street but traffic is backed up 1/2 mile between stop lights. CRAP. I went home.
So to make a long story a tad longer, I try to find pictures of the parts I need on the internet. I AM SUCCESSFUL! Moen faucet?……naw……..DELTA! Ferguson closed on Saturday….. Home Depot OPEN………. Home depot only has some some of the parts I need but I think they will stop the leak. I try to figure out how to get to Home Depot on Google Maps……… I decide to take Jil’s Smarty Pants phone with me with the maps app loaded up. THIS time the app works great. I find Home Depot fibbed and all of the parts I need are in stock. I’m outa there in no time. Back home I have the faucet apart and new parts installed in less than a 1/2 hour. No leaks YEA!
Tomorrow we are heading over the Cascade Range to another one of our Oregon fav’s, Bend. See you there!