Vacation recommendations from fellow travelers; northern CA and Oregon!

The beautiful Hope Valley offers quiet scenery and wonderful fishing and hiking opportunities!

Trinidad State Beach showcases the rugged north California coast!

Scenes like this come at almost every turn in the Bend, Oregon area!

A few weeks ago, I put out a request to Facebook pals to share their favorite vacation destination, within a 5-6 hour drive of Stockton and San Joaquin County (and to send a picture or two, if they had one).  Here are a few early suggestions; I will share more as I get them:

Bend, Oregon, from Lori Dixon of Bend, OR (formerly a local resident, moved to Bend 15 months ago): “Bend, Oregon where the mantra is, “Be nice, you’re in Bend” is my favorite place to vacation. I favored it so much that I have been a resident for 15 months now. Bend is about a 7 hour drive from San Joaquin County or a short flight from Sacramento to Redmond Oregon.

Every day is a vacation in Bend – whether you live here or not. In a town with about 81,000 residents, there are 70 parks/trails for recreation, not to mention noteworthy water – Metolius River, Deschutes River, and the lovely Mirror Pond (yes, that Mirror Pond of Deschutes Brewery Beer lore). A bonus is Bend is both dog and family friendly.

How to recreate in Bend? Mountain Bike, road bike, hike, walk, run, ski, float, SUP, kayak, listen to free music in Drake Park, listen to headline concerts in the Les Schwab Amphitheatre, shop local Farmers Markets, attend the too numerous Festivals to celebrate the seasons, craft beer, and freedom (!) or just get to know the locals by hanging out and eating at the many great restaurants and breweries or relax at “The Lot”.

Between the beautiful Cascade Mountains, the accessibility of over 20 pristine Alpine lakes along Cascade Lakes Highway, and the many opportunities to bike/hike/run/ski, enjoy music, savor craft beer and delicious wine, there is something to do for anyone of any age in Bend Oregon. Just remember, be nice.”.

The far north coast of California, from Eric Grunder (recently retired Record Business Editor): “You can rent a place in Trinidad, about 30 miles north of Eureka giving you easy access to Eureka, the college town of Arcata and to the Redwood National Park and Prarie Creek State Park. (Fern Canyon isn’t to be missed) Or you can just sit in the late afternoon sun with a book and a couple of beers and watch the sun set behind Trinidad Head”.

The Hope Valley, from Kristy Serratos Hillin (a fellow classic trailer traveler): “We recommend the lovely Hope Valley in the central Sierra, Sorensen’s Resort and Blue Lakes!”.

Send in your recommendations, and a photo or two if you have them, and we’ll continue our series of “favorite places” (and, Susan and I will find new destinations to put on our calendar!).

For additional travel inspiration, follow me at, or contact me at

Happy travels in the west!

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