Saturday, June 27, 2009

Double Whammy

Helloooo! It's been a fairly uneventful week for the Mayos in Portland. Oh, except that we are now officially an old married couple. Sunday the 21st marked one year for us! I managed to get the day off of work, and we had a great day together. It was almost like being on our honeymoon again - a full day of eating, drinking, and shopping. :) Although, I guess that's how I spend most of my days anyway...

We did get a couple excursions in this week as well, albeit not terribly exciting ones. The most exciting part was when Hollywood showed up at our front door! Well, really just a TNT drama series... and really just on our street. But still cool! The show "Leverage" decided to shoot this season in Portland, so they've been all over the place. They took over our block yesterday to do some shooting at Henry's Tavern and on the street. I snapped a couple photos just for fun.

Setting up outside Henry's

Their mobile workshop was parked right in front of our building

Please, allow your excitement to die down before trying to read about our bike ride...

We tackled another kind of big one on Thursday, a total 41.2 mile ride. This was a route from a book called "Rubber to the Road" that has tons of Portland area rides. Once again here is our route taken from our GPS (full map and date here):

This ride is titled "Flat Flat Flat," due to the relatively flat terrain along the way, but there was actually a good deal of climbing involved. Not so much steep, short climbs, but more like loooong stretches of a gradual incline... that can really make the muscles burn! Over the course of the route we ended up doing a total of 1,000 feet climbing, not bad!

We made our way from Mt. Tabor out to the Columbia River, which is the dividing line between Oregon and Washington. Most of the ride was through neighborhoods and pretty heavy industrial zones, but once we made our way to the water it was much nicer.

"The Peninsula" houseboat community

We followed the river up to Kelly Point Park, located at the point where the Columbia and Willamette Rivers meet. We didn't have too much time to enjoy the park since I had to work in the afternoon, but I definitely wouldn't mind coming back here. It was very peaceful.

The beach at Kelly Point Park

Great place for a snack break

The park trails were great, especially after the uber-industrial ride out there

Traditionally, our rides are thwarted at some point by Paul getting a flat tire... but not today, thanks to Paul's new Michelin Krylion Carbon tires! Booya!

No flats here

We pumped our way home super fast so that I could get to work on time (I didn't), but I wanted to stop and get a quick shot of this view of the river, downtown, and all the bridges in between.

All in all a pretty nice ride, not so much for scenery but great for fitness.

On Tuesday, we did another little neighborhood hike with Buckley. 12 miles, not too shabby! Here is our route, with the full map here.

We started out heading to the rose garden, to see if things were more in bloom. We may have caught it a few days too late this time. There were tons of roses in bloom, but most of them were already wilting. It still makes for nice colorful scenery.

We continued on some trails to take us to the top of Council Crest (which we rode our bikes to a few weeks ago), the highest point in Portland at around 1,100 feet. It was a beautiful sunny day!

Sunny days make the greens look even greener

Perfect spot for a break

Mt. St. Helens through the trees

We also came across the Vietnam Veterans of Oregon Memorial, which I didn't even know was there. It's a beautiful expansive park with lots of trees and fountains, dedicated in 1987. A very peaceful spot.

Buckley mama

A cool kind of tree-tunnel

At the top of Council Crest, we hung out at the doggie off-leash area for a while, which is nice and huge.

The dog park with our friend Mt. Hood in the background

Mt. Hood

On the trail headed back, we came across lots of salmonberry shrubs growing wild. Paul was pretty sure they were safe to eat, but just to be sure, he consulted his handy dandy field guide that I gave him for our anniversary. It is a comprehensive guide to wildlife, plants, wildflowers, trees, etc. in the Pacific Northwest.

Turned out they were safe to eat off the vine, so I went first. The one I got was not fantastic. Not bad, but extremely tart and probably not quite ripe.

This one met its fate in my belly

Overall a very nice neighborhood hike. No scary caves or 360 degree mountain views, but not bad for something so close to home.

We joined Zipcar yesterday (I'll do another post about that) so we will be heading out to do some more dramatic hikes this week. Can't wait!


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