|First glimpse of Crooked River|
|Castle Rock looks like an imposing fortress.|
Back in the van, we drove past rock outcroppings with names like Castle Rock and Chimney Rock, crossed the Bowman Dam built in 1956 for irrigation and flood control, and headed for the Lava Cast Forest where we hoped to camp for the night.
6,000 years ago, the Newberry Volcano erupted, spewing lava through the forest that lay at its feet. The lava began to cool and harden before the trees had been completely burned, creating casts of stone where trees had stood. We walked the interpretive trail as the sun was setting. Never have I been in a place so quiet, so eerie.
Camping was no longer allowed there so we headed to LaPine State Forest where we found a place to spend the night. The next morning we headed for Paulina Lake, one of the two lakes formed in the Newberry Crater from 500,000 years of volcanic activity. Here we set up camp for an extended two day stay.
With a mug of steaming tea in one hand and a book in another, I settled into a camp chair while Bren went for a swim. He ducked under and came up sputtering. "Colder than I thought!" he exclaimed clambering out onto the rocks along the shore, and then, "Hey Mom! Come look!"
Imbedded in the long flat rocks were bones, fossils of some long dead animal. We walked along the shore looking for more. Little striped chipmunks scampered all around us, chittering and sending up puffs of dust on the hardscrabble path.
|Sunset on Paulina Lake|