The Shiny, Happy Birthday Boy
Odell Lake, Oregon
Elevation: 5,800 Feet
Linda put together a family camping trip for her dad's Fifty-Something birthday at Odell Lake in the middle of the Cascades. Tanis had been sick off and on the weeks prior to and we weren't sure if we would be able to go. While he wasn't necessarily in great shape when we got there, he quickly warmed up to the lake and family within a day or two. He was just a bit tired.
We got to the campsite on Friday afternoon and quickly got our tent and sundries set up and ready to go. We let Sammy off his leash and sat back to enjoy the continuous evening wind blowing off the lake, keeping the temperatures to a very tolerable level and the bugs away from us. The sunset that night was about as pretty as you could get.
The ladies had brought their own little dogs; Charlene with her mini-dachsand and my mother-in-law Jeanie with her rat terrier. Above, in the sky, we could see a group of ospreys circling the tree tops, making passes about every hour around our end of the lake. We noticed they spent a significant amount of time circling our camp, chirping and squealing to each other as if to say "look at those delicious nutria those apes are holding and playing with!" Everytime they flew our direction, we yelled at the dogs and rounded them up before the greedy little birds could dig their talons into those itty-bitty dogs and fly them off to their nest. No one wanted to actually have that happen, but it might have been cool to see.
A bunch of us got up early Saturday morning for various reasons. The boys were going to go fishing out in Ron's boat and I was going to take a little jaunt on Linda's bike around Waldo Lake. I did get to see first light, which isn't something I see often. The boys did fantastic out on the lake, catching over thirty fish and even throwing some back. Gene caught one, let it go and watched one of the ospreys fly down and yank it out of the water not five feet from his face.
The camp was exactly as camp should be; great food, lots of junk food, smores and roasted marshmellows on sticks, sausages, steak, fresh-caught lake fish, potato salad, chips, soda-pop, early mornings, late nights and a constant, hot fire. Ron took us for a boat ride across the lake to the Resort to get some ice cream. Tanis got to steer the boat and I threatened Melodie the entire trip that I was going to throw her out of the speeding boat. The best part is, Melodie never knows if I mean it or not. Even better part is I never know either. The two girls and I jumped out of the boat a ways from shore and swam back, very refreshing in the later afternoon heat.
We had an improptu birthday party late Saturday night for Gene, celebrating his 58th birthday with cake, some cards and a cake which had enough candles that almost set the forest on fire. The lake was absolutely perfect with the temperature never getting hot and virtually no bugs. Something unheard of around other lakes in the area. The Odell Lake trips are getting to be an annual event for the family to get togther.