The Day Before The Storm
It was a beautiful sunny day as we cycled out of Bend, up towards Mt Bachelor, The Sisters and Broken Top. We went for a short stroll out towards Green Lake and found some beautiful little waterfalls and rapids. We found a lovely spot to camp in amongst the trees, by a little stream, and made sure to pitch the tent on high, dry ground, and strung up the tarp to give us extra shelter for whatever this storm is going to bring…
Day One of The Storm
The rain started last night at 11pm as forecast, but we were wrapped up snug and warm in our sleeping bags and didn’t worry about it until we woke up this morning to a flooded porch and a collapsed shelter. The rain was still pounding down, so we stayed in the tent for breakfast, dozing for a while before it was time for coffee. We thought we should probably do something about the flooding, so dug a drainage ditch with a spoon. The rain eased off a bit giving us a chance to work on the drainage ditch outside the tent and find a bigger stick to hold up the tarp in the gusts of wind. We mostly stayed inside the tent for the rest of the day, reading our books, eating, sleeping.
Day Two of the Storm
It sounded like the rain had eased off again in the night, but it turned out that was because it had started snowing. The tent was sagging under the weight of the snow, so we cleared it off before breakfast followed by coffee in our sleeping bags. The snow had pretty much turned into rain again by this point, but we thought we should probably get moving and find some lower ground to camp, as this road is not maintained in winter, and our bikes are not particularly well suited to cycling in the snow. We reluctantly packed away the soggy tent and started cycling up over the pass and down the other side, on the look out for anything that might give us shelter. We found an amazing old forest guard’s hut, complete with wood burning stove, wooden desk and chair, and even a bed, but unfortunately it was locked, so after a cup of tea in the porch we carried on to find somewhere to camp. We stumbled upon Little Lava Lake campground, officially closed for the season but apparently okay to stay in for free, there were quite a few groups here for the weekend, and we were offered a glass of wine by a friendly couple who let us warm up in front of their fire, so we called it a day and found the driest patch of ground to pitch up.
Day Three of The Storm
It stopped raining for about half an hour today. Almost everybody who was here for the weekend has packed up and gone home except the guys in the big red tent and gazebo who have been out fishing on the lake. They said this is one of the worst storms they have seen here in a long time. They split some wood for us that we had found and we just had time to make a fire before it started raining again. Jules found it hard to resist warming up by the fire despite getting soaking wet in the process. We managed to make two loaves of bread on the coals before the rain put them out completely.
Day Four of The Storm
It was bloody freezing cold last night. The inner of the tent was suspiciously dry when we went to bed, and we suspect that our sleeping bags have probably absorbed most of the moisture. It has also started snowing again. It’s a winter wonderland out there, but not ideal for cycling… At 11am we were still in our sleeping bags so decided to make pancakes before doing anything else today. It sounds like the sky is falling in, but it’s probably just snow collapsing from the branches of the trees above our tent. The snow has gradually turned into sleet and back into rain, but no sign of it easing off today, I guess we’ll be staying here another night.
The End of The Storm
We woke up to an unfamiliar brightness lighting up the tent, but couldn’t quite put a finger on what it might be. As we emerged from our den, bleary eyed and a little confused to discover that we had shadows again, we began to realise that we might have made it through the storm. Then it started raining. But not for long. So we decided to pack up and get on our bikes. The first few pedals were a bit wobbly, but we soon remembered how to cycle, dodging the snowy patches and puddles. It rained on and off for most of the day, but we managed to time our stops with windows of dry weather, the sun even came out from behind the clouds to warm our bones and start to dry our clothes. Sunshine has never felt so good. We found a beautiful, windy lakeside picnic area and took full advantage of the dry spell to dry out our tent and sleeping bags before continuing on to camp.
Will it ever end?
It rained all night last night, but the sun came out again this morning. It’s been on and off for most of the day, but we think that we’re probably through the worst of it…
This might explain the atrocious weather we’ve been getting lately: