My driving start time from Mom's house was 6:30 a.m. to make it to the park by 8:00 a.m. The morning was sunny and clear with light traffic on I-5. Once off the interstate and state highway 22, the landscape changed. I traded Texas palm trees, live oak, cactus and mesquite trees for Christmas tree farms, grass-seed farms, foothills, Douglas fir trees, and a state park with 11 waterfalls.
Darren and Susan, Mike and Cathy (also from Texas) met me at Silver Falls State Park. We joined the line waiting to sign in at 8:00 a.m.
|Volksmarch start point for the Silver Falls walk/hike|
Mike, Cathy, Darren, Susan and I started the walk together. After the first waterfall, Mike and Cathy told us we didn't need to wait for them, so the three of us took off at our medium-to-fast pace.
|South Falls 177'|
Our next waterfall was down 185 stairs, but still on the main path, so we didn't have to go back up them. We'd be climbing out of the canyon farther down the trail. Lower South Falls did not have near the volume of water going over it as it did last year.
|Lower South Falls 93' in 2015|
|The Trail of Ten Falls goes behind North Falls|
|Stairs out of the canyon|
From the checkpoint, we had the option to add 1k to our 12k walk by hiking the easy, flat trail to Upper North Falls. We did it and had a very easy stroll out and back to Upper North Falls.
|Upper North Falls|
|We conned someone into taking our photo -|
me, Susan M. and Darren M.
There was a hot dog lunch for $5 at the finish. We opted to eat there and had a hot dog, chips, Famous Amos Cookies, grapes and lemonade. That tastes so good when you're really hungry!
Susan and Darren waited for Mike and Cathy to return from the hike (as they were riding with them back to Salem). I went to Salem to pick up my convention packet, then to Lake Oswego to pick up a copy of my car insurance card. (I left mine in my car in Texas.)
I returned to Mom's house about 3 p.m. That night for dinner she made turkey meatballs with gravy, mashed yams, and asparagus. I am not going hungry on this vacation. Good thing I'll be walking so much.
Tomorrow will be a Volksmarch in Vancouver, Washington. We will be meeting there at 9 a.m. Looking forward to it. The weather will be cooler tomorrow.
Travel Bug out.