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Old 09-14-2010, 12:27 AM   #1
Macadam Drifter OP
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The Road to Hell-Hells Canyon That Is- Days 1-3 Completed

Day 1:



Just got back from a three day road trip to northeastern Oregon. The weather was near perfect and I was able to explore a few roads that I had not been on before.

The one disappointment was that the Hells Canyon Scenic Byway on Forest Service Road 39 was still closed due to flood damage about 39 miles south of the northern starting point of FR 39. But still it was an enjoyable journey.

I departed Ellensburg on Saturday and proceeded east on the Vantage Highway. This way I was able to avoid I90.

MY first stop was the Wildhorse Windfarm located 14 miles east of Ellensburg. I wanted to see if Mt Rainier and Mt Adams were viewable from the Visitor Center.





Those wind turbines sure are big!


View from Visitor Center-unfortunately it was a little to hazy to get a good view of Mt Adams.



My next two stops along the Vantage Highway were the Ginkgo Petrified Forest Park and the Columbia River at Vantage.

Gingko Park


Vantage Boat Launch on the Columbia River


After Vantage I crossed the Columbia River on the I90 Bridge and proceeded eastbound to Othello on Highway 26.



After Othello I turned south on Hwy 17 past the Scooteney Reservoir and again turned east after Connell on Hwy 260. Hwy 260 takes you through the Washtucna Coulee as it winds its way to the town of Kahlotus.

Kahlotus is a dying town none of the stores there are operating-but the town is fun to photograph-sort of a living ghost town----but………..

City Hall


Jail


Wall Art


From Hwy 260 I picked up Hwy 261 which takes you to the town of Starbuck. Before getting to Starbuck you cross the Snake River at Lyon Ferry. This is a very interesting area. First there is a big railroad bridge that crosses the Snake and there is a State Park, and a Marina/RV Park as well.



After Lyons Ferry is the town of Starbuck. Here are some pictures from downtown Starbuck. The town has fuel and cafe.





After Starbuck I worked my way north to Colfax were I wanted to spend the night but the town was having its fall Fair and all rooms were full.

I ended up going down to Clarkston were I got a room and spent the night.

The next day would be a great ride on Hwy 129/Hwy 3 down to Enterprise Oregon.

End Day 1.

MkD
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Old 09-14-2010, 03:41 AM   #2
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You'd think Starbucks would buy the town of Starbuck and turn it into latte central!! Thanks for the report and pics

Day 2
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Old 09-14-2010, 05:21 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gadget Boy
You'd think Starbucks would buy the town of Starbuck and turn it into latte central!! Thanks for the report and pics

Day 2
Day 2 will be coming soon. But first I need to transfer the photos.

MkD
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Old 09-14-2010, 05:32 PM   #4
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Old 09-15-2010, 01:57 AM   #5
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Day 2

Got up a bit late and had a light breakfast (I went over to a bakery and got myself some cinnamon streusel and coffee). Between carry gear back out to the bike I nibbled my breakfast.

Today will be a short ride Clarkston to Enterprise down SR 129 and SR 3. This is a very scenic and twisty road with several long straight stretches on the high plains. This is a fantastic road-near the Grand Ronde River Canyon the road gets so twisty you could swear its going to tie itself into a knot.

Swallow Park south of Clarkston on the Clearwater River


Southbound on SR 129 the Nez Perce Trail


Tumble Weeds


One of Many Old Barns Along this Route


Joseph Canyon Overlook




Entering Oregon




Lake Wallowa


Nice Old Barn in the Wallowa Valley


End of Day 2
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Old 09-15-2010, 01:44 PM   #6
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Lookin good. Was that HWY 3 you took south of Clarkston?
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Old 09-15-2010, 02:47 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kodanja
Lookin good. Was that HWY 3 you took south of Clarkston?

Yes Oregon SR3 -Washington SR129

MkD
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Old 09-17-2010, 06:25 PM   #8
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Day 3



Got up early and had breakfast in Enterprise at the Friendly Cafe. The only place open at 6am in town and the food was good and too much for me to eat. I especially enjoyed the homemade blackberry jam.

This was a nice early morning shot of the Wallowas enroute to the town of Joseph



Finally got to the sign confirming that FR 39 was still closed and was not passable to Halfway.



FR 39 can be a bit twisty



Signs of Fall



Getting closer to the end



Hells Canyon Overlook



The Imnaha River



Joseph Oregon





Lostine Oregon



Field Burning in the Walla Walla Valley



And so ends my three day road trip to NE Oregon and the Hells Canyon Scenic Byway.

MkD
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