Shakespeare, ex-volcano and showers

Carrying on our tour in Oregon we stopped in to catch a play at a Shakespeare festival, saw North America's deepest and cleanest lake and found a bargainous campsite. A tourist leaflet took us to Ashland, a town we may not have headed to, but was well worth a visit for their Shakespeare Festival. The Elizabethan theatre is open air and it was here, we watched the Tempest – one of David's favourites and one I hadn't seen before. It was a great performance, made even better by the setting sun behind the stage. The gift shop was of interest as well since they sold some English novelties such as PG Tips, Tunnocks Caramel Wafers and Crunchie bars! It was a lovely end to a day that too much time had been spent in various car places while Macy's brakes were sorted out, and the drive shaft replaced for a second time! The wrong one had been put on the first time so at least this was done free of charge…

From here, we headed to the North Folk of the Rogue which had some very interesting geological sights. Its a relatively young area, with much volcanic influence. We saw lava tubes that had collapsed, and others which were plugged. At one point, the majority of the river is hidden as it makes its way through a network of these lava tubes, and all that can be seen are blow holes giving a hint of the turbulence of the water. We took a look at one of the gorges which was thankfully blocked with a tree, preventing us looking at it from a paddling perspective any more – it wasn't nice looking. David had a look at a gorge that is paddled but again decided he didn't fancy paddling it and so it was we ran a lovely section of fun grade 3 with a 6.5 mile trail to hike for the shuttle.

Oregon's only National Park is Crater Lake, a beautiful blue lake formed by the collapse of volcanic Mount Mazama over 7,000 years ago, making it the 7th deepest in the world] and [because it's fed only by rain and snow it's one of the clearest. There was surprisingly a lot of snow still there considering its nearly the end of June, but apparently the area has an average 45 feet of snow per year! The East Rim Drive was still closed because they hadn't cleared all the snow yet, and the walk we did up Garfield's Point certainly got more challenging because of the white stuff. It was a stunning place and though we saw no ginger cats, we saw a few chipmunks again.

A book at the gift shop meant we found a campsite costing $5.50 a night which had hot showers (a true luxury while on the road) and gave us chance to refill water. It was a great find, where we tried our best to burn one of the huge logs Macy had been carrying around for us, and ate yummy pizzas prepared by our own fair hands.

The next river on our list is the North Folk of the Umpqua, before we head west back to the Pacific Coast. In the meantime, David has been putting more thought into an English Macy – he's decided a caravan inside a minivan is what we need. Maybe some more thought is needed yet!

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