No time to burn

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After a couple of months travelling with no set deadlines it was a bit of a shock to suddenly have to be at a certain place at a certain time. 

Fortunately that place and that time was Burning Man 2014, so it wasn’t like we were rushing to the dentist’s office or anything unpleasant. The downside was that when we realised that we only had a couple of weeks left to get to Nevada, we were still in Canada. With more than a couple of week’s worth of sights to see. Also, we had been delaying buying important things like tyres and a fridge until we got further south. 

As a result our visit to Vancouver was short, but our visits to Washington and Oregon were even shorter. 

Our visit to Washington allowed us to briefly see the Seattle skyline when we dropped by to meet the folk from Drive Nacho Drive

Seattle Skyline

Our enduring memory of Seattle was however the terrifying road system, this helped to keep the visit brief.

One of the most important members of our expedition team finally joined the crew just out of Seattle. 

Meet Fridge.

Fridge

Thanks ARB!

As the team member who keeps beer cold and dairy products edible, it could easily be said that he is the most important member of team Flightless Kiwis.

Drinker of the beer
This guy just drinks the beer instead of keeping it cold.
Eater of the cheese
And no cheese is safe around this one.

For more practical and informative reading on the process of installing the fridge and the second battery that powers it, I’d suggest reading Ben’s post

We were disappointed not to see enough of British Columbia or Washington, so intended to return at a later date, when there wasn’t a weird-arse festival in the Nevada desert to get to. 

See also  Trapped in bear country

So we had a quick look at Mt Ranier and swore we’d be back for a proper look around later.

Mt Ranier

Spoiler: It didn’t pan out. One day we’ll be back. But now we are in Mexico catching up on blog posts from our whirlwind tour of what little of the lower 48 we managed to visit before our visas and money ran out.

From Washington, we headed south to Oregon. And beer. 

While in Oregon we dropped in to visit Jim, Rhonda, Porter and Aspen from The Next Big Adventure and The Black Dog Chronicles

The Next Big Adventure

When we say ‘dropped in’ we mean imposed on them for several days and tried to steal both Porter and Aspen.

Dog thievery

Unsuccessfully. Ultimately both dogs are quite loyal. 

They were very welcoming hosts and we had a fantastic time staying at their lovely house with indoor plumbing and an actual bed. Also we shared several of the local brews available in the Portland area. Home to several breweries and the magical John’s Market, a bottle store with thousands of bottled beers available. 

But none from New Zealand. Take note Portland, you need to get your hands on some Garage Project, Yeastie Boys, Twisted Hop etc. You have a lot of your own beer, but we can tell you that you are missing out.

Despite the lack of good Kiwi brews, Portland was delicious. There is probably a limit to how many days we could have slept in Jim and Rhonda’s spare room without them phoning the police to have us forcibly removed, but we do wonder if we could have set up camp in the carpark of John’s Market.

See also  Mexico

We really didn’t get to enjoy the area as much as it deserved, because much of our time there was spent on important tasks such as sourcing new tyres, bikes, a roof rack and a bike rack. 

It was with great sadness in our hearts that we left the home of Jim and Rhonda (especially because we were obliged to leave with neither Porter nor Aspen).

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