Staying in Joseph, Oregon
In the summer of 2016, on the heals of moving house and living in a new city, we left for our summer vacation. It was hard to leave our new home, there was so much to do! But we had planned the trip long before we knew we were moving and we had show tickets to see Zac Brown Band in Pendleton and reservations for a house in Joseph. I had never been to the town of Pendleton, but of course I was familiar with the towns biggest brand “Pendleton” We loved our time in this western town also famous for the Rodeo that’s held every September. We checked out The Prodigal Son Brewery and loved the decor, beer, and food. We hiked one day outside the city and the scenery was pure summertime of yellow rolling fields of grass and big blue skies. Our last night in town there was a big old full Strawberry moon and I went out behind out hotel where there was a vacant field, laid a blanket down and watched it rise. The next morning we were on the move to Joseph. I had not been there since I was kid, when my mom and dad used to take us camping at Wallowa Lake. We stopped for lunch and a beer at Terminal Gravity in Enterprise, a brewery we had had beer from but had never been to their brewery. It did not disappoint. We had a little time before checking in to our VRBO so we walked on the Zumwalt Prairie in Wallowa County. We weren’t aware this magical place existed until we had been searching for a hike near Pendleton and read about it. It was AMAZING. We ended up going back out there another day to continue exploring. I haven’t seen much Prairie land in my lifetime and I was enamored. The big old Hawks that just sat on fence posts roadside stopped me every time. It was pure magic. Joseph was a sweet little town and our VRBO was in an old house that was super cute. It had a record player with records, a ping pong table, an upper deck where I went out one night and saw bats swooping all through the sky. We took the tram to the top of Mt. Howard and had a beautiful hike. One day we drove way out, like way out, and found an overlook of Hells Canyon that was just completely deserted. We hadn’t seen a car or person for miles. There were butterflies flying all around and several came and landed on our outstretched finder tips. Coming home we drove the blue mountain scenic byway and man. Wow. We saw an elk caught in a fence and felt helpless to assist. We decided to drive in to town where we could get cell service and notify Fish and Wildlife. As we were preparing to get back on the road, the animal was able to free itself and join it’s partner who had been highly distressed. One final stop was at Cottonwood Creek at the John Day River, because it’s also a very special place.