On Day 10 of our vacation we woke up early and packed up to head toward Cave Junction, OR. We were headed to the Oregon Caves. It was one of our longer drive days, and we decided to stop for a picnic at Hiouchi Visitor Center in Jedidiah Smith State Park. We had been there a few days earlier and we knew it was a good spot for a picnic not far off the road. The boys got good at picnicking during this trip.
The road from Cave Junction to the Oregon Caves National Monument is steep and very windy. We made it up the hill and to the Chateau in plenty of time for our cave tour. We checked in at the Chateau, which was very charming. The building is old and has the original wooden desks, bed frames, and other furniture from the 1920’s. Each bed has a hand made quilt. The boys had fun relaxing in our room.
Unfortunately, you have to be 42 inches tall to go on the cave tour, so Caleb could not go. My parents stayed back with him while Nathan and I took Elias and Simon into the caves. We had an excellent tour guide who made it fun and interesting. Neither of the boys had really had an experience like this before, and we were hoping they would enjoy it. Simon got a bit nervous when they turned out all of the lights and we stood in the pitch black of the cave to see what it was like. Both boys enjoyed walking through the cave and up and down all of the steps. We saw many really cool formations.
We woke up the next morning, and it was my parents’ turn to go on their cave tour. Both Elias and Simon had the opportunity to go with them, but only Elias took it. Simon decided he had had enough on the first time through. Elias, Ama, and Baba departed for their cave tour, and the rest of us went on a short hike while we waited.
After they finished, we got back in the car to head for our final destination: Crater Lake. You can read more about that in the final episode – Family Vacation 2017: Crater Lake Edition.