Our Last Post from Dallas

path at cape lookout in oregon

A Few Day Trips –

We took a couple of day trips during our stay in Dallas. One to the coast, back up to Cape Lookout. We had been there before and only got a short way down the trail to the ocean. This time we came more prepared for a longer walk. 

path at cape lookout in oregon

Most of the trail is high above the ocean and lined on both sides by dense forest. It is classic Oregon forest: huge trees, ferns, dense undergrowth and wet: everything covered in water, even the air was saturated. You can see that in some of the photos. 

two yellow slugs in a forest

These are trails you get mostly to yourself, at least on weekdays. Somehow, who knows how, but time seems to slow down and thoughts are easier to think, feelings to feel, etc. A purely sensual experience, and the perfect antidote to a hectic life (which we don’t have so much anymore).

ferns along a path at cape lookout

Cascade Head – Where is it?

We had many adventures during our stay in Lincoln City. One that we didn’t share concerned a place called Cascade Head. During our phase of trying to capture sunrises and sunsets, we tried multiple times to find Cascade Head – a high, bare plateau overlooking the ocean at the north end of the town. Each time we were thwarted by dead-end or closed forest roads. 

a foggy path surrounded by trees and ferns

Well, on this day after our visit to Cape Lookout, the forest road up to Cascade Head, closed all winter, was finally open and in we went! We traveled along this foggy dirt road up and around anticipating coming out to a grand vista overlooking the ocean. 

a foggy path surrounded by trees and ferns

It was gloriously murky, and we finally found a path and began walking, and walking, and walking. We met a couple, real hiker types, coming up the trail. Yes, you can get to that knoll overlooking the ocean. Sure, you just follow the path, all the way through these woods, across a meadow, then back up some mountains: not more than four miles each way. You might want to hurry though – looks like a storm coming in. 

a path in the woods surrounded by trees and ferns

Raincoats would be a good idea. We looked at each other, wondering who in the world they were talking to – Oh, us? No way we were ready for that. Besides, it was getting on in the afternoon, and we had hungry critters to feed before too long. So, we couldn’t get there again, what a joke! Would we ever?

a miniature golden doodle and a standard poodle

Two Random House Sits

During our four months in Dallas, we added two repeat solo house sits for homeowners. It’s hard to say no to those requests. We already had a great house sit. But if there’s any way we can help out, we like to say yes.

In other words, Jim spent five days in Portland with the friendly critters you see above. Since we’d already done several stays with them, the daily walks were a breeze: both the dogs and neighborhood very familiar by now.  

They are easy dogs to care for: one wanting more attention than he needed, the other needing more attention (for medical reasons) than she wanted. That was quite a balancing act, but also fun. They are fine companions in a comfortable home: thoroughly enjoyable.

a black and white cat on his back waiting for a belly rub

Also, I returned to Vancouver, Washington again with this feline. He is such a sweet and easy going fellow and never a bit of trouble at all. You may remember he was an extra shy cat, but he remembered me and came for attention quickly and frequently.

Plus, it was great to see Vancouver in summer since our previous stay had been in cold and rainy December.

Silver Falls State Park - grass and trees

Back to Our Dallas Stories

Our favorite outing during this house sit was to Silver Falls State Park. It is the largest state park in Oregon, and we didn’t see much of it on our one hike. However, what we did see was magnificent.

Silver Falls State Park - tree branches covered in moss

Just look at these trees! They are covered in bright green moss. Even though it was summer, the weather was quite cold and a bit rainy. All that rain makes the area verdant and lush. 

We chose a path towards the closest waterfall not knowing what it would be like or how far we had to go. The thirty-minute walk to the falls was spectacular on its own.

Silver Falls State Park - lush greenery

At one point, we heard water and knew we were getting close. If the weather were warmer, you would think you were in a rainforest in Hawaii.

Silver Falls State Park - large waterfall

Just look at that! Can you see the path behind the water? It’s a pleasant path behind the waterfall, then around the pool at the bottom. Finally, the trail goes over a quaint wooden bridge and back up the steep trail to the top of the falls.  

Silver Falls State Park - a tree-lined pool

Here’s the view downstream, no hints of the waterfall, just like a thousand other beautiful streams in Oregon. 

Silver Falls State Park - large waterfall

The photo below is from behind the waterfall. What a gorgeous spot! Hopefully, we’ll be able to return one day.

Silver Falls State Park - behind a large waterfall

Okay, here’s our first try with a video in the post. Hopefully, you will all be able to watch it!


Back to Our Day Job

We have to share a bit about our garden before ending the stories from Dallas. The garden did quite well indeed. Look at those zucchini plants! They liked that spot.

large zucchini plants

We almost managed to pick each one before it turned into a twenty-pound weight, but we missed a few! 

In the photo below you see that we had to fence it all in to keep the cats and dog out! What is it about garden beds that make them so attractive to pets? 

garden bed filled with plants

We had a daily supply of fresh zucchini, purple beans, kohlrabi, basil, swiss chard, and lettuce! Not too shabby, right?

garden bounty on a plate

Also, since we had to return the garden bed to it’s sleeping state before leaving, we began digging up the potato plants not knowing what we’d find. We got a delightful surprise!

about 30 homegrown potatoes on a counter

Yes, even potatoes. We were so glad to be in one place long enough to plant and harvest these. They were a real treat with some salt, olive oil and a little time in the oven. Yum!

basil leaves in a dehydrater

Here’s our basil harvest in the dehydrator. On the way to pesto? Hope so. What a treat having a garden!

close up of an exquisitely beautiful ragdoll cat

It’s Farewell Again

Well, our time in Dallas had come to an end. Four months with these two adorable, hilarious, loving cats. 

close up of an exquisitely beautiful ragdoll cat

Here’s our favorite pal! We love this girl and hope to spend more time with her sometime soon. We’re pretty sure the feeling is mutual. 

black Labrador sitting inside

Farewell to Dallas

As shared previously, I worked hard to keep a week open between this house and our next one in Sonoma as we had some places on our wish list to visit! Our plan was to camp for three days, visit a friend for three days, and then camp three days before our stay in Sonoma. 

Looking at the calendar, we realized we had covered all but two days in the calendar year with house sits! No wonder we felt ready for a bit of adventure. Besides, we need to use our camping gear once in a while! 

What’s Next – Our camping journey begins

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    • Cindy Birko on July 12, 2017 at 10:33 am
    • Reply

    Your garden was most impressive! You do way better than I do. The raised garden bed is now full of . . . . guess . . . . . berries! Strawberries this time!

    1. I was wondering how you had enough strawberries for jam making… that explains it!

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