Day 6: Oregon Scouting Visit Field Notes

Trees Looking Upward

After heading west to the coast on Day 5, I decided to head east through the Cascade Mountains and National Forests on Day 6 of my  scouting visit of Eugene, Oregon. Read on to find out where I went and what I discovered!

Woodfield Microhood Cropped - Your Place FinderGlenwood

This low-key breakfast and lunch spot in a former Pizza Hut building was brilliant! You could tell it’s a favorite of the locals. The food and coffee were legit and everyone was super warm and friendly. In Eugene, vegetarians are not relegated to vegetarian restaurants. You can go to just about any restaurant and have several vegetarian menu items to choose from. What a luxury!

Quirky Eugene moment: On my way out of the restaurant, this young guy walks up to me holding something that looked like wind chimes – I honestly have no idea what it was – and says, “Do you want this? I don’t need it anymore.” I thanked him and declined and he walked into the restaurant to see if someone else in there wanted whatever it was.

College Hill/Friendly NeighborhoodsTiny Art Gallery - Your Place Finder

I drove around the neighborhoods behind Glenwood restaurant after breakfast. I’ve never been to Eugene before but I keep getting déjà vu. It happened again here where I found a wildly cool street painting (see above photo). And in front of one of the houses, there was a “tiny art gallery” (see photo on the right) with paintings, drawings, books and art supplies inside. A lot of people in Eugene have little free libraries in front of their houses too, which I love!

Koosah Falls3 - Your Place FinderKoosah Falls

After that, it was time to head east about 70 miles through the Willamette National Forest. Lisa, the proprietor of the Air B&B I’m staying at, recommended that I check out Koosah and neighboring Sahalie Falls. The first waterfall I reached was Koosah Falls. The park was not crowded, which was nice, but it was difficult to get a good angle to see the waterfalls. I made a valiant effort to take a photo anyway, which you can see here.

The park has a hiking path that leads from Koosah Falls down along the river and around and up to Sahalie Falls, but I had other sights I wanted to see. I also want to share that experience with my husband. So, I made a note to add the hike between the falls to our bucket list for when we move to Eugene!

Sahalie FallsSaheli Falls - Your Place Finder

Half a mile up the road from Koosah Falls was the turn out for Sahalie Falls. The park was more crowded than the other one and had a much better viewpoint overlooking the falls. Both Koosah and Sahalie waterfalls are spectacular, but I think I liked this one a little more. It’s so dramatic!

Natural Arch Hike (almost, but not quite)

I thought the Natural Arch Hike sounded pretty awesome and noticed it was not too far from Koosah and Sahalie Falls. I assumed (big mistake!) it would be like the falls where you park and walk down to an overlook. Was I wrong!

When I turned off the highway, I was suddenly on a steep gravel road. Determined, I continued; after all, the GPS voice said it would only be two miles! Two miles up the mountain, fog was swirling all around me and there was no sign of an arch.

The GPS voice then informed me that I needed to “continue on for another three miles.” What?!? The adventurous part of me wanted to keep going, but the sensible part of me knew I’d be screwed if the rental car broke down or blew a tire out there.

It’s a good thing sensible won out! When I took a closer look at the description for the Natural Arch Hike, it said it’s a 25-minute drive up on gravel road, a 20-minute steep hike down to the arch, and a difficult 30-minute hike back up. That was definitely not what I had in mind, so I turned the car around and headed back to Eugene.

Last Day! Day 7 Field Notes Up Next!

Find out what happened on Day 7 of my Eugene scouting visit here.

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I founded Your Place Finder in 2017 to help retirees and almost retirees like you anticipate and overcome the pitfalls and challenges – and reap the rich rewards – of finding the perfect location to move for retirement.

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