Around and about…

After visiting the Lava Beds & Capt’n Jack’s StrongholdI didn’t have much more to do in Merrill except ride my bike around town and occasionally take a drive here or there. Also found a neat golf course outside of town. Nine holes for $13, which included a rental hand cart to drag my new found golf clubs around. If you remember, back when I was in San Felipe, Baja Mexico, early this year, I went to a thrift store looking for a camping chair, and found a full golf bag for $12. Quite the bargain, and the equipment was all top notch. So I’ve been carrying them around with me for 4 months and here in Merrill I found a convenient golf course to practice at.


This is the practice putting green. Pretty nice park. Not too many trees. Benches to rest at in the shade. This first round I played here I’d gotten at the course around 10. Takes around 2 hours to play 9 holes, and it was getting fairly hot at 11 so the shade was always welcome to find. Near the end of play, started to seek shade out as I walked from hole to hole.

Off in the distance, Mt. Shasta.The club house. Empty and locked up when I got here, but the guy that runs it arrived shortly after I did.

Rented a hand cart and now I’m all ready to play my first round in a couple years. And this time I have my own clubs instead of a rental set. First hole. Green is way over there. Tee’ed up, took a nice relaxed swing, and POW, ball is straight down the fairway, and lands just yards from the green. Nice start!

Should only need to chip this to the green and putt it in the hole, but it took 4 strokes. Doh! Off in the distance is the 3rd hole. That building is a farm house. Course owner lives there.Relaxed a bit here while I scoped out the next hole. Straight fairway but with a large, deep water hazard. Couldn’t tell if it had water from here. Took my swing and the ball was a worm killer. Just a couple feet off the ground. And it seemed to head straight for the hazard. I thought that’s where it ended up.

That pile of rocks is the water hazard, deeper than it looks too. Standing at the bottom you can’t see out. There’s no water right now, I lost my ball (I thought) inside there and spent 10 minutes looking for it. Found two good balls while searching so it wasn’t wasted time. The green is up that hill a bit to the right of those tall trees.

Here’s where I dropped my replacement ball. After I took a penalty swing and walked up to the green, I spotted my lost ball right at the fringe of the green. Dammit.

Well, enough of that.

It was now July, and I’d moved over to the RV park next door. Their monthly rate is $325 + electric and the site I got was shaded in the afternoon. So here I am in Merrill enjoying blazing fast Wifi and warm weather.

That’s the main drag through town and where I’d ride my bike two – three times a day.

Gravel roadways but not dusty. Washroom is there in the distance on the left. They’ve added a section in the back for overnight parking with spaces that you could kind of call pull through. Didn’t care for it much. That’s where I’d parked the first night in town when I thought this park was the Passport America park. 

So since I spent a week and a month here in Merrill, I did drive around doing tourist stuff. There really isn’t much touristy stuff to do really, so I just drove to a few outlying towns and such. One of the places I went to was the old town of Tulelake. No reason to live here that I could see. Pretty quiet little town. Don’t think I saw more than 5 vehicles. There’s only one stop light and I accidentally drove right through it and didn’t notice the light was red as I was rubbernecking.

Then I drove over to Malin, Oregon. This town is tucked up next to the foothills around Tulelake and was settled in 1909, on land that was formerly at the bottom of Tule Lake, by immigrant families who named the new town for the Czech town Malin.  Has a very nice city park.  Not much of a town, peaceful, quiet. They do have a pizza joint though. The only grocery store. You can drive 30 miles to K-Falls though.I did travel up to K-Falls once a week to shop but it wasn’t much to write about so I’ll skip that for now. Meanwhile, here in Merrill, I rode my bike 2-3 times daily and this one time took my camera. So here’s a few shots of Merrill. Nice little town. This is the old school that now is a general purpose community and library building just 100 feet south from the RV park I’m staying at. The residential neighborhoods here and nearby are in great shape for the most part. Funny that I rode through the entire town several times and only saw one house for sale on the east side. The west side of town was the run down portion but even there, few houses for sale, maybe 2 or 3. So the people here really seem to like living here. Very few dilapidated or run down homes.

Looking back towards the north in front of the old school. Had a milk shake here, pretty good. Place was crowded during lunch and dinner times so I expect the food was good too. A little further south and closer to the traditional downtown. Grocery store I shopped at. Had everything I needed, even had some bargains, but they did not carry my favorite brands of beer. Downtown buildings. At the end of this block is a 15-20,000 sq. ft. quilt manufacturing facility AND quilting supply store right next door. Click here to see some pictures of Tater Patch Quilts. It is confusing finding something like this in such a small town. It must be famous or something to be here out in the boondocks in a town of only 3,000, and look like it’s thriving. If you want to retire somewhere with a strong quilting bee setup in place, this would be your town.  And they have a nice fancy coffee shop and deli style place in downtown. Had b-fast here once and mocha coffee several times. But just up the street past that True Value hardware building on the left in the picture is one of those drive through coffee places. I liked their b-fast sandwiches better. Also half the price. Here was my go to bar when I wanted to watch a game. It’s not wide, but it is deep. Had dinner here several times. And that’s all from Merrill, Oregon near the Oregon/California border. Hope you enjoyed the visit. Next time, we’ll visit Crater Lake. There’s a forest fire going on up there right now (July ’17), but the access road isn’t blocked as far as I can tell.

Until next time…Thanks for reading!

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2 Responses to Around and about…

  1. PEnny says:

    stay safe and enjoy your pictures

    I try to. I’m a cautious type, always have been. And thanks for the compliment.

  2. SamG says:

    Golfing and biking Jim. Getting your exercise. Did you visit the Passport park at all?

    Really had lots of fun both on the bike, and golfing.

    After spending that first night in the wrong RV park, I moved over to the PPA park the next morning and spent 4 nights there. By that time, I’d visited the Lava Beds, and decided I wanted more time in town. But…my site at the Wild Goose (the PPA park) was brutalized by the sun most of the day. So I walked over to that first RV park, Merrill RV Park, and found they had a beautiful site with lots of afternoon shade, at $325/month. So I moved over and stayed there a month. Paid an extra $84 for electric, mostly AC.

    My internet is AT&T mobile mifi. After V***zon dsl slowed service several times and one day no service with the hold on we may get to you customer service. That no service day, no customer support. Now- mifi with at least double the speed for half the price. Anywhere i can get 5 volts usb. And AT&T coverage. Happy happy joy joy.

    I’m pretty happy only paying $20/month for my Tracfone. And I can tether it, so as long as I get cell phone, which is most of the time, I can get Wifi from my phone. Also, I get 5 GB per month free as part of my plan.

    Mount Shasta back drop looks keen. I like that picture too. It’s taken from Capt’n Jack’s hideout.

    Working on my toad. Pickup. Motorhome, not enough. Weather here in SE Pa. is mixed.
    But if/when i make it to Tyrone, N.M. and i meet you on your travels, i’m still buying you a beer. Happy travels, Jim.

    Thanks! I’ll take that beer too. I’m heading south right now. Soon will be in Beatty, NV where it’s warm. Probably stay a week, than down to Brenda, AZ. Nice quiet PPA park there. Probably spend a week there. Then on to San Felipe, Mexico. On the Baja. You’re welcome to join me and the group down there. There’s a pool!

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