January 11th, 2013

New Tilley Hat

20121221 Trip to Oregon and Back: Minnesota and North Dakota

Public Facebook Gallery (which will be added to): 201220-23 Road Trip to Oregon Part I: MN, ND, MT, ID

Brief background: Carole's grendkids by her son are now in the care of her daughter in Oregon. Getting them to their aunt was a long process, largely with Carole's help, and this is the optimal situation for them.

For Winter Break, the kids are at home but the daughter and boyfriend are still working. Carole offers to fly out to babysit and visit. The basic problem is that Bend, Oregon is not an easy place to get to by air. Geting to Portland is easy, but getting her up into the mountains is expensive and would be physically taxing.

So I offer to drive. We've been meaning to take a long trip for a while. Indeed, we were planning an overnight excursion to The House on the Rock when she hurt her leg. We were forced to cancel that. Further, my 2012 Camry has never been tested. Time to take a road trip!

My deal was: We had to do tourist stuff as well as babysit. Carole agreed.

I made sure our AAA memberships were up to date and made a TripTik for the route west. Changed the oil and rotated the tires. Bought an iPad w/cellular connection to take/edit/post photos on the road as well as serve as a connection to emergency services. Made checklists of chargers and electronics. Bought enough trail mix, bottled water and other stuff to last us if we got caught in a snow drift for three days...

Say... when did I become the organized one? Oh dear.

Car with Trip Mileage 0
Car with Trip Mileage 0, Mpls 12/20/12
Journey begins under the cutCollapse )
In the Bismarck hotel, we registered for a hotel at the next jump: Bozeman, Montana with a stop for a dinosaur museum. Then a long night's sleep.

Continued in 20121222 Trip to Oregon and Back: Montana.