We kiss in front of an icon to our other true love--ice cream.
24 years of marriage and we’re still in love with each other…and with ice cream! Just like kids having a birthday party at their favorite place, we celebrated our anniversary last Saturday at Happy Days Malt Shop here in Gold Beach, Oregon.
David and Miss Piggy.
David ordered the Miss Piggy: 3 scoops of ice cream, 3 syrups, whipped cream and nuts in a huge bowl.
Rose and her hot fudge sundae.
My chocoholic nature took over when I ordered a big hot fudge sundae with a scoop of chocolate ice cream and a scoop of espresso madness (coffee with chocolate bits) ice cream, topped with whipped cream and nuts.
Many we enjoy many more years of ice cream together!!
Towering Douglas firs and Port-Orford cedars dwarf David on the Shrader Old Growth Trail. Photo credit: Rose Muenker
A magical forest of towering Douglas firs and Port-Orford cedars dwarf us as we walk along the one-mile Shrader Old-Growth trail in Siskyou National Forest.
Rhodendrons splash the setting with dazzling pink. Moss dangles from branches and cloaked tree trunks. Tall ferns wave in the breeze. The only evidence of wildlife is a solitary bird’s melodic song.
Pink rhododendrons blossom in Shrader Old Growth Forest. Photo credit: Rose Muenker
The trees, a brochure informs me, stand as high as a 25-story building (200 to 250 feet high). Most are more than 200 years old. They make me feel like a tiny youngster.
I feel like we’re walking in our own private forest. Even though the trail is just 10 miles up the Rogue River from the coastal town of Gold Beach, we’re the only people here.
We’re discovering that all sorts of stunning natural sights are within a short drive of our “summer home.”
Moss drapes from rhododendron tree along Shrader Old Growth Trail. Photo credit: Rose Muenker
Proud angler shows off his catch at the Libby Pond Kids' Fishing Tournament. Photo credit: David Muenker
This past weekend, David and I got the chance to try our hand at fishing license-free, thanks to the Oregon Division of Fish and Wildlife. Our workamper friends Cal and Phyllis were game for a fun outing so the four of us piled into their truck and headed to Libby Pond off the Rogue River. Kids had the pond all to themselves until noon for a fishing tournament. Five of them caught trout measuring 20 inches or more!
See why Cal is the perfect fishing instructor? Photo credit: Rose Muenker
When the air horn announced the end of the tournament, we adults got our turn. We pulled on our rubber boots and took an overgrown, mucky trail to the morning’s hot spot for hooking big ones.
Cal outfitted us with rods, reels and bait and gently gave me instruction on how to cast the line and reel it in. I won’t go into the tangled lines, lost lure, and my reel dropping on the ground while I was holding the pole. Suffice it to say that Cal is a saint!
The kids did far better than we did. The only fish I “caught” were the ones Cal hooked and I reeled in. But we had a great time and caught enough trout to prepare a delicious appetizer to share with friends later around a campfire.
As much as I enjoyed the afternoon, I’ve decided to invest in a shell fishing license instead of a fishing license. I haven’t tried harvesting mussels yet, but the procedure looks easy, the equipment is minimal (a bucket, gloves and a garden tool to pry the mussels off the rocks), and the license is inexpensive. I may even manage to get the daily quota!
I have a visual treat for you — David’s photos of our travels published in our On The Road column in bimonthly Out of Denver magazine! The beautiful, South Denver publication has run our column since September 2009 when we first set out on this journey. It’s an ongoing photo-illustrated chronicle of our full-time RV life.
While our blog gives you updates with web-quality photos, the photos shown in the links I’ll be sharing with you are knock-outs! Plus the files are PDFs so you’re able to enlarge the text and images.
I’ll start with the column about wintering in southern California. [Those of you who are sweltering right now will find it refreshing!] Getting to show off our “winter home” to the wonderful friends and family members who came to visit made those months extra special.
Donna & Bob, Cindi, Mimi, Bonnie & Gerard — Even though your names may not be mentioned, this column’s for you!
Winter in San Diego: Ships, Casinos and Dramatic Weather
I’ve archived earlier issues. They’re listed under Magazine Column in the page tabs at the top of the blog and under Articles in the right column. Enjoy!
David pauses on the trail to Secret Beach. Photo credit: Rose Muenker
The map of the Samuel H Boardman State Scenic Corridor shows Secret Beach as a point of interest, but on our excursions we’ve never seen a sign bearing its name. Today we made it our mission to find the place. We were right — there’s no sign. But we did see several vehicles parked off the road in a small dirt area, a sure sign that something worthwhile was nearby.
Once we squeezed in alongside the cars, we noticed a trailhead sign. A small metal plaque showed a segment of the coast with a red dot marking Secret Beach. Aha! This was the access trail!
The trail to Secret Beach leads through an emerald forest. Photo credit: Rose Muenker
A steep, wet dirt path led down into an emerald forest of ferns and towering evergreens. Along the way, a hidden waterfall serenaded us. And then the view opened up to a secluded cove with huge rocks offshore — some with arches. Miner’s Creek cascaded into the ocean.
This beach is not secret to those in the know. A bevey of teenagers were on the beach and romping in the surf. High tide had just peaked. Unlike me, the teens were conditioned to the chilly Pacific water and an air temperature in the 60s.
The uphill climb back to the road rewarded me with lovely flowers, like this wild iris, and intriguing types of moss.
A wild iris beautifies the trail to Secret Beach. Photo credit: Rose Muenker
Now that we’ve scouted out Secret Beach’s location, we plan to return another day at low tide and explore tidal pools around the rocks. This spot may even prove to be a good location to harvest mussels!