In fine Kuhl Odyssey style, we packed the first few weeks of our third nomadic year with some great fun! Our summer job in Yellowstone kept us from our original plan for the summer of heading up the coast in the Pacific Northwest. But we finally made it and moved our way into Oregon. I had been anticipating getting to Bend for quite some time, there is just so many great things
there. The beer scene is pretty happening and there is mountain biking galore. Better still, there is abundant national forest boondocking right on the edge of town. The best part though…we got to reconnect with rving friends we have not seen in a long time. Our friends Shannon and Dave of 2WanderAway have been in Bend most of the summer and played host to various nomads. We are sort of the tail end, but they still managed to suffer thru some brewery visits and evening chats….oh the
suffering. Our friends, Hans and Lisa of Metemorphasis Road also are spending several weeks and Bend and we managed a few meetups including a great concert at McMenamins Brewery one evening. Our boondocking spot felt really nice and secluded, yet we were only a couple miles from town. While it was a bit dusty, it was a great spot. I was able to hop on the mountain bike and hit the trails right out the rv door! We also put may miles on the e-bikes all over town. Bend is a perfect biking town, with trails all over and residents and businesses that encourage biking.
Our biggest issue was that we only had four days. WAY to short a time. So many MTB trails and great places to check out, we did not even scratch the surface. I was pretty determined to complete the Bend Ale Trail even with our short stay. Somehow we managed to fit in ten breweries in the short stay and earned our silly pint glasses. It is certain that we will be back to actually give Bend the attention it deserves. Why such a short stay? Big fun plans that is why!
Dave and Shannon invited us a while back to join them and a bunch of friends at the Mount Angel Oktoberfest! Toni and I have never attended an Oktoberfest, so obviously the best way to check it out is at the 4th largest one in the country over four days!
When we arrived at the super secret camping location just a couple blocks from the fest area, we quickly (well not so quickly) scoped our our territory and established our compound. It was awesome meeting some great new friends as well. Also joining us were fellow nomads Jase and Lauri of Wanderwasi as well as John and Becky of Adventurenext. Just hanging with such a cool group of friends would have been well enough…..but the fest as well! It was easy to see why everyone loves coming year after year.
Crowded beer halls with crazy crowds enjoying German music and dresses in authentic garb. Just for a general scope of the size of this fest, there were no less than four giant beer halls, each with a lineup of musical entertainment from family friendly to crazy beer swinging drinking songs. It seems to be about four city blocks for the main portion of the festival, but it is spread throughout much of the small town as well. Tons of great food and vendors as well. Basically, it is a four day party of epic proportions. Our camp had a pretty big contingent of Oregon Ducks fans (no surprise) but John and Becky are die hard Nebraska fans. And guess who was playing on Saturday…..non other than the Ducks and Huskers! We had an outstanding potluck huddled under the rv
awnings as it poured rain all day Saturday! A huge spread of food and of course a beer or two were enjoyed by all. The perfect warmup for a rainy evening in the Beirgarten to see a favorite band a second time. It was sad it had to end, but by Monday morning the last of our little mini-convergence was off their separate ways. One of the things we find really cool about this lifestyle is the great friends we have made along the way. Whenever there is a chance to gather two or more it feels just like old times. Then as we all head off in different direction we look forward to the next time to meetup while exploring our country each with our own agendas.
And that leads me into a quick summary of year of travel from September to September. Our first year we had an average nightly stop of just four nights. That seemed like a blistering pace and we set out this year to change that. While we did much better, I was a bit surprised as the average stop time. This year we ended up at 6.5 nights average stop with a total of 52 stops for the year. Thinking back at some of the long stops (for us) we had this year, I was thinking it would have been higher. There was two months in Yellowstone and one month in San Diego. In addition we had some family moochdocking stays of close to three weeks as well. While the 6.5 average seems low, we both feel the pace felt much better this year. We can see how the occasional one month destination can be a good thing, but two months seems too long. There were a bunch of week long stays, then the quicker relocation type overnighters. Most likely we will put in some ten day to two weeks locations in the coming year. A week seems alright in far off bondocking locations, but when close to cool little towns and well beer, a couple weeks seems like a better way to really feel like being part of a community. With that said, we stayed at a very diverse list of locations, as we would expect. Here is how the stops looked:
9 – Boondocking locations for a total of 57 nights
8 – Moochdocking locations for a total of 82 nights (this is how we refer to spots family and friend graciously allow us to boondock at their homes)
1 – Working Location at Yellowstone National Park for 68 nights
1 – Working location at Barrett Jackson Car Auction for 13 nights
8 – Private RV Parks for a total of 42 nights
6 – State Parks for a total of 18 nights
4 – City Parks for a total of 16 nights
2 – Events (Nascar and Balloon Fiesta) for 21 nights
3 – National Forest Campgrounds for 9 nights
7 – Casino Boondocking for a total of 9 nights
2 – County Parks for a total of 9 nights
2 – Harvest Host locations for a total of 2 nights
1 – BLM Campground for 2 nights
1 – RV in storage for 10 nights
1 – Air Force Base for 7 nights
It was surprising to see so few state parks, as they are some of our favorite spots to stay. We did have a total of 182 nights of no hookups, so half of the time we are boondocking in one way or another. Very glad we have our solar setup and it has worked flawlessly for us. Here is a link to our video on our solar setup. There have been only a couple of times we needed the generator for battery status purposes when we had several days of rain in a row. Other than that, the generator is only needed if we want to run the AC while boondocking. That is a win in our book. It still is hard to believe it has actually been two whole years. So we embark on the new year excited to see what it may hold.
This entry was posted in Blog and tagged beer, bend, brewery, fulltime, gorving, kuhl, kuhlodyssey, livingthedream, mountangel, nomadlife, Oktoberfest2016, oregon, rvblog, rvlife, seneca by Kurt Kuhl and comments are open.