John & Anne Wiley

2011/08/15

Smiley Adventure :) :)

Filed under: Happiness,Random,Smiley Adventure — John @ 19:47

We’re off on another Adventure with Tripp, this time for a camp-out with delightful Julie along a grass strip in the Idaho mountains by the name of Smiley Creek. Such a happy name seems perfect to tag this trip even though that’s only one among many fun places and people we’ll see and visit. I’ll put our planned route map at the bottom of this post, but in essence it’s a trip up the glorious west coast to Seattle with many stops along the way and that detour over Crater Lake and the “Sisters” range near Bend, out to the Sawtooth Mountains. We’re excited, and very Smiley! 🙂  🙂

Smiley Plan

Smiley Plan

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2011/08/16

First Leg

Today we left later than hoped, because Tripp needed some TLC. We’d had her nose strut rebuilt a couple of weeks ago, so of course today it was flat when we arrived at the airport to get an early afternoon start on our first leg of the trip up the coast. So by the time we’d had it fixed, we raced sunset and arrived just as the colors were fading and the lights started to twinkle. Oceano looked so wrinkly in the evening light, as shadows began to advance across the dunes.

3038 High Over Oceano

3038 High Over Oceano

We were flying higher and faster than usual to arrive before dark, and get a better look at Big Sur on the way. Morro Bay was lovely with a scatter of soft clouds mingling with the “sister” rocks toward SLO in the distance.

3053 Morro & Sisters

3053 Morro & Sisters

We got a good look at Hearst Castle, though the sun was too low to light up the brilliant aqua blue Grecian pool.

3084 Heast Castle Evening

3084 Heast Castle Evening

One of our fav stops when driving Big Sur is the Julia Pfeiffer Burns park, where you can walk under the highway for a great view of surf surging through sea caves and the long waterfall onto the deserted beach.

3138 Julia Pfeiffer Burns

3138 Julia Pfeiffer Burns

As we passed Nepenthe low clouds were gathering closer to shore and the light was fading, so we climbed direct to San Jose and got this shot of Monterey being overtaken by the fluffy blanket.

3153 Monterey Blanket

3153 Monterey Blanket

Nearby the coast from Pajaro Dunes to Santa Cruz was still clear just as the sun slid into the muck offshore.

3156 Santa Cruz Sunset

3156 Santa Cruz Sunset

We arrived in San Jose just at the right time to have good visibility, but late enough for the flavor of night flight that we so enjoy.

3159 San Jose Twilight

3159 San Jose Twilight

I hope the weather permits more coastal flying tomorrow as we continue North!

2011/08/17

Amazing Day

Filed under: Flying,Happiness,Has Photos,Nature,Random,Smiley Adventure — John @ 06:20

Quick post tonite because we’ve been up late talking with our friend in Ashland. Just had to post even tho there’s no wifi here (using my Droid cellphone instead), because today was so breathtaking. Here are a few snaps of the unbelievable routing we got past San Francisco, and of the Mt. Shasta summit we flew close to because winds were light. Needless to say, we have many more great pix from today to share with you later. 🙂

3301 San Francisco!

3301 San Francisco!

Now that we’re home from the Smiley Adventure, I’m updating some posts to make corrections and as you can see in this one: post better versions of the pix!

3323 Coit Up Close

3323 Coit Up Close

3610 Shasta Summit

3610 Shasta Summit

Off Grid

Filed under: Flying,Random,Smiley Adventure — John @ 18:33

We’re at the Ashland airport, which thankfully has wifi. I wanted to let you know we’ll be off the grid for a few days. First two nights in Smiley Creek, ID where there’s not even cell service, then Lake Chelan, WA where we might also have difficulty getting online. So you might not get to see any of the amazing pix we’ve collected until Saturday. We’re sure excited to share when we have time! 🙂

2011/08/18

Sawtooth Sunrise

We woke early to watch the sunrise lighting the Sawtooth Mountains, and now I’m standing outside the lodge using their wifi and waiting for their 8am opening for some coffee to offset the 32F air out here. Meanwhile, here’s what I put together last night after discovering they have wireless.

We scored a cool teepee at the lodge across the little highway from the grass air strip. Their wifi means if we have any time off from hiking, flying, driving and all things camping… I’ll be able to sort and share some pix. This is such a great place for my first “soft field” landing!

0612 First Grass

0612 First Grass

Our dear Julie snapped this as we landed, and it was so wonderful to spot her standing there waiting for our arrival!

We flew near Crater Lake on the way here from Ashland,

3761 Crater Lake

3761 Crater Lake

passed the Three Sisters peaks approaching Bend,

3807 Three Sisters

3807 Three Sisters

saw miles of vicious rapids even closer to Bend,

3823 Kayak Challenge

3823 Kayak Challenge

(lots of kayaks, but we didn’t see any actually in the white water), and flew past Stanley along the Sawtooth Mountains that were clearly well-named.

3889 Sawtooth Sliver

3889 Sawtooth Sliver

The range is of course many miles long and this pic is just a small slice near Stanley, but it gives you an idea of how jagged the peaks are. The many alpine lakes are stunning, but smoke from fires near Boise added to the natural haze backlit by the lowering sun so I’ll just have to fly them again to try for some better pix. 🙂

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