Monday, March 31, 2014

Oregon: Pre-adventure research

In one week we're going to Oregon!

Flying into Portland then off to Bend. After two days there we continue on to Ashland where we'll be staying for another four days before looping back to Portland.
Sun in Bend

So lets talk about the weather. As I write this its March 31 and 22 degrees. We're expecting 3-5 inches of snow tonight. In Bend the temperature is 45 and its 56 in Ashland. And that's all I'm going to say about that.

Bend. One doesn't associate Oregon with desert but apparently a good deal of the state, the entire part that lies east of the north south Cascade Mountain Curtain gets very little rain and is high desert. Bend is home to the Deschutes River, the Deschutes River Brewing Company, and some great hiking trails. I only hope two days is enough time.

Ashland. Ashland is home to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival and one of the favorite refueling stops for thru-hikers on the Pacific Crest Trail. Aside from the usual visitor guides and Arcadia Press picture books, those were the types of books I was expecting to find when researching Ashland. However, when looking for books, I soon discovered many more interesting things about Ashland,

1. It is home to Blackstone Audio, the largest independent audiobooks publisher in the United States, and a company who's audiobooks are heavily purchased by my library.  There's a great interview with the founder George Black on the founding, why they moved to Ashland, and why they support the Jackson County Library:

2 It is also home to author Scott Blum, and the setting for his three book new-age life-transformation series.

3. It was named as Outside Magazines top 10 towns in 2012:

4. It has a "pumpkin carrying hippy" who rides a bicycle for a mayor: