It always amazes me how much people rely on our little Hells Canyon lodging for information about the road between Joseph Oregon and Halfway Oregon. Everytime I look at the Google Analytics for the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast blog, I can see how often blog posts about this subject are searched for and read. Forget the "Joseph Oregon hotels" or the "Wallowa Lake hotel" search--seems like everyone wants to know if the road is open!!!
So, here's what's going on in 2012 for Forest Road 39 (aka Wallowa Mountain Loop Road, aka FR39, aka Hells Canyon Scenic Byway, aka the road from Joseph to Halfway). As of this week, the road is unofficially open--this information from the USDA Forest Service Visitor Center here in Joseph Oregon.
You might have to get out and move a few rocks, perhaps drive around a downed tree from last winter's snow--you drive it "at your own risk" since the Forest Service hasn't been able to maintain the road yet.
But it's a sign of spring! Lots of rain moving through the area and the temperatures are warm enough for snow to melt, so be careful out there. Not much cell service along Forest Road 39 (and definitely no gas stations) so plan accordingly! Let people know where you go if you decide to drive this route
And we'll see ya here on the Joseph Oregon end of the road!
Well, I'm not quite sure how you'd get your money back from these buffalo as the viewing is free--but aren't they the best buffalo you've ever seen? Joseph Oregon resident Mark Lacey recently posted this gorgeous photo to his Facebook account and I couldn't help but share. When you visit Wallowa County in Eastern Oregon in the spring you might just see buffalo up on "the North Highway" (aka Oregon Highway 3 north of Enterprise, Oregon).
It's quite a sight to see these buffalo that are part of the Stangel Buffalo Ranch. And it is possible to sometimes get close enough to hear them snort at each other. And yes, those really are the Wallowa Mountains in the background.
Stay here at our Eastern Oregon bed and breakfast and we'll send you out on a buffalo excursion. Or maybe for some birdwatching, or wildlife viewing, or who knows what! We're well equipped with binoculars, detailed maps, hiking guides, etc., and advice to help you get the most out of your vacation.
It's been two years since Joachim Becker last visited our Hells Canyon lodging. Last time, the president of New York-based Zoho Music made us a gift of Zoho Music's upcoming release, Tribute to J.J. Cale. And just like last time, Joachim's stay was too short! We'd love for him to have the opportunity to drive the Hells Canyon Scenic Byway or take a run up to Hat Point for the incredible view.
But he did leave us with another parting gift. Zoho Music's 100th CD release is Hendrik Meurkens and Gabriel Espinosa with Anat Cohen & Antonio Sanchez entitled "Celebrando". Release in April 2012, this CD is fresh.
From the liner notes: The CD gathers the leaders and seven splendid colleagues to investigate 10 succulent Brazilian jazz originals – with a “Yucatecan and “European twist,” say Gabriel and Hendrik – and one classic bolero, all designed to enchant.
Cross your fingers! I think this one's headed for a Grammy Award. At least it's award-winning here in our Eastern Oregon bed and breakfast kitchen. The feel of this Portuguese/Spanish styling has me dancing through the dishes!
"Celebrando" is available throughout the US. Pick up a copy and enjoy the sounds. You'll be ready for that trip to Brazil in no time!
Mount Howard rises up at the southern end of Wallowa Lake in Northeastern Oregon. From Memorial Day through the end of September each year, the Wallowa Lake Tramway whisks you and your mountain bike up to the top (over 8,000 feet) for the beginning of your ride.
Here's a recently posted YouTube video of a mountain biker with a chest cam taking you on his trip down the back side of Mount Howard. The video was taken in September 2010 and posted by Gonkolater in April 2012:
Planning your Joseph Oregon vacation for the summer? If you have a decent off-road bicycle, this is something worth considering (downhill most of the way, great scenery, not too hot, etc.).
At the Bronze Antler Bed and Breakfast we have storage for your mountain bikes or your road bikes. And we're happy to help you figure out the route for returning to Joseph Oregon from your Mount Howard adventure.
All this kerfluffle about doiles. We've been lambasted with unsolicited emails from the "Crochet for a New Day" Super PAC suggesting we should join the ranks of bed and breakfast inns supporting the motto of "A doily on every nightstand."
And we've seen our share of the opposing "Liberate our Furniture" Super PAC emails urging bed and breakfasts to "eliminate doilies from every bureau in the country."
Well, we've taken our stand. Here at the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast we've had too many compliments from male guests thanking us over and over for not having a doily in sight. "I've been to so many bed and breakfasts with my wife where I'm afraid to sit on anything, there's nowhere to set anything down, and the doilies! She did me right by bringing me here!" As far as we're concerned, doilies are out, romantic getaway is in!
We're proud to be members of the No-Doily Party, but we know that there's room in America for the Pro-Doilies too. We encourage you to vote for your party of choice: Doily or No-Doily at the Better Way To Stay website (did I mention that there's a drawing for a complimentary stay at an inn who shares your convictions?)
Get out there and vote your choice - Doily or No-Doily. And we'll see you No-Doily supporters for your romantic getaway Oregon style and doily-free!
It's not often that we get a special request for breakfast. Our typical rotation of "sweet" breakfast one day and "savory" breakfast the next satisfies the majority of our guests. But every now and then a repeat guest asks for something special on the menu. Since it was his birthday and there were no other guests scheduled into our bed and breakfast that morning we were happy to honor the request (of course, his wife was more than happy with the breakfast we'd planned).
And what was it the birthday boy wanted for his special meal? Steak and eggs? Waffles and whipped cream? How about steel cut oats with all the fixings? YES!!!
A comment from the Mirror Lake Suite guest journal after their departure:
Wonderful bed! Wonderful breakfast! Isn't that what it's all about? And. . .in Heather's absence, Bill did ALL the breakfast -- including the steel cut oats. . .and 'twas GR8!
I'm sorry I don't have a photo of that special oat breakfast (I was away from our Joseph Oregon lodging that week), but rest assured that Bob's Red Mill award-winning Steel Cut Oats played a prominent role in satisfying the birthdays boy's special request.
And if you're thinking about asking for steel cut oats during your stay, we always keep a supply of Bob's Red Mill in the larder. You just never know when a guest is going to have oats on his mind!
The last African Drumming session of the 2011-2012 winter season takes place at Lear's Irish Pub (I know it sounds a little corny--African Drums & Irish Pub) on Friday, April 13, 2012. Starts at 7 pm. A good time to get out and dance and shake off the last of the winter blues!
We take African drumming seriously out here in Eastern Oregon. This group meets regularly and then performs on occasion at Lears. A not to be missed event!
If you plan to drop in for the drumming you'll need somewhere to stay afterwards. Of course we recommend our Eastern Oregon lodging just a 10 minute drive away from Enterprise in Joseph, OR. All three rooms and our over-the-top suite are still available for Friday night. And no two-night minimum during April. That means all you Eastern Oregon people living in nearby communities like LaGrande or Pendleton have the opportunity for a quick weekend getaway. See ya soon!
Before you know it the Joseph Oregon Car Show aka "Oregon Mountain Cruise" will be here for 2012. It's always the second weekend in June here in Joseph Oregon.
Here are the top reasons to book your room now at the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast:
This year's Joseph Oregon car show theme is "Roaring Twenties"--how approriate since our bed and breakfast was originally constructed in the 1920s (not as a Joseph Oregon hotel but as a private residence). We're excited to see how the participants are going to dress. Maybe a photo or two in front of the B&B is in order.
We're looking forward to a full house for the Oregon Mountain Cruise. Don't miss the opportunity--book through our website or call us before someone else gets the reservation!
The Wallowa Mountains are picture perfect for backcountry skiing. One of the local outfitters running trips is Wallowa Alpine Huts. I just couldn't resist this video from their "WAH TV" channel on YouTube. Fantastic conditions, great skiers--you'll notice no one is skiing in anyone else's tracks. And where are the crowds? None.
Early Spring is still time for great skiing. If you need one more dose of a snowy Eastern Oregon vacation, check out Wallowa Alpine Huts, or check our other blog posts for information on skiing (use the search box at the right).
Lodging options? You're not going to find any Joseph Oregon hotels or Wallowa Lake hotels, but the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast is ready to host you at the beginning or end of your backcountry ski trip.
Bill & I spent St Patrick's Day this year at the Northeast Oregon Bridal Show in LaGrande, Oregon. What a fun event--it's our second year participating.
Everyone was there. Vendors with bridal party attire, wedding rings, DJs, wedding cakes, fine chocolates, even turtle doves! Our booth showcased our romantic getaway Oregon style with two computer screens displaying images of our Joseph Oregon lodging. Bill wore one of his Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast dress shirts. I decided to dress up for the event in some sillky PJs, fuzzy slippers, and a stylish Bronze Antler B&B spa robe. Needless to say I was the envy of the vendors!
We talked with quite a few brides, their friends and relatives. And some other vendors too. We love the opportunity to showcase our property. And bed and breakfast lodging makes great sense for wedding planning. We've hosted quite a few couples on their wedding night or on their honeymoon, as well as relatives and wedding guests..
If you're planning a NE Oregon wedding we'd love to talk with you about how our bed and breakfast might work into your plans. We're not a Wallowa Lake hotel or a Joseph Oregon hotel but still have plenty to offer.
Native American performing artists this year are the top two hand drum contest winners from the 2011 Tamkaliks Celebration. Francis Dionne of Boise, Idaho, and Chris Shorty of Pendleton, Oregon, will entertain dinner guests with drumming and singing.The Wallowa Lake Lodge is about a 10 minute drive away from the Bronze Antler Bed & Breakfast. We still have two vacancies for Saturday night. If you'd like to attend, contact us promptly for your room reservation and we'll secure dinner tickets for you. The dinner tickets sell out quickly so please don't procrastinate.