On our second day in Oregon, Kev and I met up with a dear friend of mine, Niki. I have known this girl forever! I knew the second we were going to Oregon that we had to meet up somehow.
She lives near Bend, so she knew just where we should go. She took us out to Smith Rock State Park, and I thought we were in heaven! Smith Rock has gorgeous, sweeping views, high cliffs, deep canyons with a gorgeous blue river running through, hiking, trails, and tons of adventurous rock climbers and slack liners. Have you heard of slack lining? Goodness gracious, do I have some crazy photos to show you! Keep scrolling to see. :)
Here we are! Niki grew up in Auburn too! You may remember me sharing photos from her wedding, photos when we randomly met up at the beach and realized we had rented condos two doors down from each other, and these family photos I took for Christmas cards several years ago.
And of course Kevin was there too! :)
We started out up high, where Kevin is standing in the above photo, above the river.
We hiked down the canyon until we were level with the river and crossed the bridge over to some the trails leading up the rock.
And then we hiked allllll. the way. back. up.
We took the “Misery Ridge” trail, and while it claims to be only 1.1 miles, it is almost straight up! This little sea-level girl is not so used to the elevation, and after 20 steps, I thought I was going to die! I was huffin’ and puffin’! :) Which was super embarrassing, because Niki is like, crazy in shape, and as soon as we got to the top, she found a cliff and started doing pull-ups. Not even kidding. That girl is my hero.
P.S. Niki, may I have your amazingly-toned arms please? Thank you.
By the way, I’m thinking it might not have been so embarrassing if I hadn’t snarfed down that Doughnut French Toast for breakfast.
This is me hanging on to Kevin for dear life! :)
But the views were absolutely stunning.
You could see for miles in every direction; the whole city.
I made the mistake wearing hot purple nylon shorts that were very um, shall we say, poofy, so I declined to be in any photos for the day. Actually, okay, fine, I was in photos, but after I saw myself in said photos, I vehemently declined to ever let them see the light of day. So here’s just Kevin. You can imagine me in ridiculously poofy hot purple nylon shorts standing next to him. Thank you.
There had been some wildfires in the area, so the sky was hazy and full of ash.
I have never seen anything quite like it.
Yes, this is part of the Misery Ridge Trail. Looks fun, doesn’t it! :)
At the top of the summit is Monkey Face Rock.
Can you see the Monkey face?? :) He’s looking right.
Monkey Face is a free-standing, 400-foot high spire that is the focal point of Smith Rock. It also features a “slackline” between Smith Rock and the mouth of Monkey Face. As I soon learned, a slackline is basically a tightrope. Niki told me about them, but I didn’t quite believe her.
Until I saw this.
Um, yes. That is a PERSON walking on a TIGHTROPE at FOUR HUNDRED FEET IN THE AIR.
It was pretty freaking crazy.
He starts from a seated position on the line, then stands up.
Holding our breath!
He made it safely back! Thank you Cory for your super-awesomeness and amazing us with your slack lining skills!
After hiking all morning, we needed to reward ourselves, obviously. :) We had lunch at Jackson’s Corner, a yummy cafe in Bend with handmade pizzas, pastas, and sandwiches. For dessert, they offered cookies from the famous Sparrow Bakery in Bend, and also a local baker who does wedding cakes and makes mini versions for Jackson’s Corner.
The cookies were amazing! This was a peanut butter chocolate chip cookie.
This chocolate cupcake topped with chocolate ganache, chocolate mousse, and chocolate chips was perfect!
I cannot stop thinking about this chocolate crinkle cookie. It was so rich, and decadent, and fudgy! It was almost like a perfect little brownie.
Thanks so much for looking! Have a great weekend! xoxo
*Thank you so much to Travel Oregon for sending us on this trip!