The Byways-by-Bus Committee regularly sponsors bus trips to points of interest both in and out of state — the Oregon Coast, Crater Lake, the Rogue River Canyon, Columbia Gorge, Alaska, and many other places. The trips may vary from one-day excursions to multi-day trips covering several states. They look for the unusual and prefer the back roads and sometimes the rails or waterways.


2004 Bus Trips Schedule

Interested In A Trip? Here Are The Rules and Regs

Archive of Trips in 2003
Archive of Trips in 2002
Archive of Trips in 2001


Questions about Bus Trips?
Contact Ray Jensen, 345-5366


2004 Bus Trips Descriptions

Lunch at the Adobe Tuesday, March 16, 2004
Leader: Liz Reanier

We’ll travel Hwy 99W to Corvallis, then Hwy 20 to Philomath where we’ll have coffee at McDonald’s (included). Then take Hwy 34 following the Alsea River to Waldport. We’ll spend time at the Historic Alsea Bridge Interpretive Center then on to the Adobe for lunch (price included). You’ll be able to watch the waves crash while having lunch. You must select your lunch item at the time of registration. There will be ample time to walk the beach at the Adobe or to take the ¾ mile hike north to Sand Beach prior to our departure. The bus will then head south on Hwy 101 stopping at the Darlingtonia State Natural Site to view the plants in the bogs. Our last stop before heading inland on Hwy 126 will be in Old Town Florence (rest break for coffee or ice cream).

Cost: $35 Member ($37 Non member)
Due: March 8
Reservations and Checks to: Janet Speelman, Phone 344-3019, 1496 West 28th Ave, Eugene, 97405

Guide Dogs for the Blind Saturday, April 3, 2004
Leader: Ben Jeffries, Co-leader: Ray Jensen

Come visit Oregon’s inspiring national training facility for Guide Dogs, located in Boring. We will have a private tour of the buildings: veterinary hospital, kitchen for animals and dormitory for dog recipients and dogs. There are a few steps but there are hand rails. We will then attend the heart warming dog graduation ceremonies. Each dog recipient will speak as will each volunteer puppy (10-18 months training) raiser. It’s a tear jerker, so be prepared. There will be a slide presentation of the program and a live demonstration with a dog. Refreshments will be served afterwards. There is also a gift shop. Lunch will be your picnic lunch at the Barton County Park, located on the Clackamas River, or on the bus depending on the weather. Return to Eugene by 6 p.m.

Cost: $33 Member ($35 Non member)
Due: March 17
Reservations and Checks to: Janet Speelman, Phone 344-3019, 1496 West 28th Ave, Eugene, 97405

McKenzie River Highway Mystery Trip Tuesday, April 20, 2004
Leader: Liz Reanier, Co-leader: Ray Jensen

Be adventurous and join us as we see the sights and explore along the scenic McKenzie Highway. We will travel as far as Koosah and Sahalie Falls before turning back to Eugene. The location for our picnic lunch TBA. Bring money for mid afternoon pie and coffee at the Rustic Skillet. Home by 5:30 p.m.

Cost: $24 Member ($26 Nonmember)
Due: April 10
Reservations and Checks to: Janet Speelman, Phone 344-3019, 1496 West 28th Ave, Eugene, 97405

Birds ’n Blooms (includes Cascades Raptor Center) Tuesday May 6, 2004
Leader: Ray Jensen, Guide: Rick Ahrens

We will explore some of the many wildlife areas around Eugene. Rick Ahrens, “Expert Birder,” will guide us to those choice viewing spots.

Plan of the day—subject to last minute changes

8 a.m. Assemble at the usual loading area at Valley River Center
8:15 Rick will lead a walk to the ponds along the river (toward Marist High School)
9:30 Load Bus, travel to Alton Baker Park for refreshments and bird watching
10:00 Onward! Possible options include: Stewart Pond, Meadow Lark Prairie, Checkermallow Access, Dorris Ranch, etc.
Noon Sack lunch at Perkin's Peninsula Park, at Fern Ridge for additional viewing of water fowl. Scopes will be set up to see what we can see.
1 p.m. Board bus, stop at the wildlife area at the south end of Fern Ridge. Route will be Willow Creek Road, then east on West 18th and on to the Cascades Raptor Center.
2:00 Arrive at Cascades Raptor Center on Fox Hollow Road. Louise Shimmel will greet us with a short talk. There are many caged raptors on display. It is on a steep hillside with uneven gravel trails so plan accordingly.
3:30 Depart for Valley River Parking Lot. Back at VRC for unloading bus by 4 p.m.
4–5 Optional walk across the river to the Rose Garden.

Note: Bring binoculars, good walking shoes, walking stick or cane, appropriate clothing, sack lunch.

Cost: $17 Members ($19 Non members)
Due: April 19
Reservations and Checks to: Mary Lee Cheadle, Phone 689-1085, 3225 Richards Avenue, Eugene 97402

Touch of Class — Inn at Spanish Head — Lincoln City Monday–Tuesday May 17 & 18
Leader: Ethel Allen, Co-leader: Ray Jensen

All rooms at the Inn have ocean view, and refrigerators. Need sack lunches both days.

Day 1: Leave Shopko on Coburg Road parking lot at 8 a.m. Rest stop at Avery Park. Continue on to Newport and then north on Hwy 101 to Gleneden Beach State Park for our picnic lunch. Next stop is the Bijou Theatre in Lincoln City. 2:30 arrival for organ concert before the matinee movie. Check in to Inn at 4 p.m. There will be ample time to walk the beaches (look for glass balls placed there daily), and enjoy the view. There is lots of whale watching year round. Time to use the hotel’s many luxurious facilities before a buffet dinner (included) at 6:30 p.m. Soft dinner music provided by Paul Beard. More of same after dinner.

Day 2: 8:30 am Buffet Breakfast (included) in Balboa Room. Time to enjoy a leisurely morning as bus will not load until 11:00 a.m. Picnic lunch back at Gleneden Park. Depart 1 p.m. to Alder House for glass blowing demonstration, also pottery making near by. At 2:15 p.m. drive to Connie Hanson Garden which should be in full bloom. Rest stop and coffee break on the way home (by 6:30 p.m.)

Cost: $148 Member ($152 Nonmember)
Deposit: $75 March 10, Balance due: April 20
Indicate roommate at time of registration
Reservations and Checks to: Ethel Allen, Phone 736-0692, 1064 56th St., Springfield 97478

Back Roads in the Coast Range Wednesday June 9, 2004
Leader: Ray Jensen, Co-leader: Ewart Baldwin

Basically we will explore the foothills of the Coast Range in Benton and Polk Counties. Itinerary is tentative. We will go thru Monroe and Alpine with coffee at Bellfountain City Park where there is a 85 ft long table. At 10 a.m. we will visit the Benton County Museum in Philomath which is in an historic brick building, formerly Philomath College. Then west on Hwy. 20 to Blodgett, up to Summit and into the Luckiamute River drainage to the Fort Hoskins Interpretive Center where we will have lunch. There will be an optional ¾ mile interpretive trail hike. In the afternoon we will stop at the Ritner Covered Bridge, the Falls of the Little Luckiamute River at Falls City, a rest break at the Dallas City Park. Other stops as time permits.

Cost: $27 Members ($29 Non members)
Due: May 15
Reservations and Checks to: Mary Lee Cheadle, Phone 689-1085, 3225 Richards Avenue, Eugene 97402

Cooley Iris Gardens — Oregon Garden — Mt. Angel Abbey Thursday, June 17, 2004
Leader: Bette Hack

We will travel I-5, coffee at Santiam River Rest Area. Continue to Silverton to visit the Cooley Iris Gardens. There will be a short drive around Silverton, stopping at the City Park to view Silver Creek. On to the Oregon Garden for a tour and lunch. We will leave around 1:30 and drive to Mt. Angel Abbey where we will visit the Chapel, the museums, and see the library designed by world famous Finnish architect, Alvar Aalto. We will return home via back roads.

Cost: $30 Member ($32 Non member)
Due: May 15
Reservations and Checks to: Mary Lee Cheadle, Phone 689-1085, 3225 Richards Avenue, Eugene 97402

Oregon Zoo Wednesday, June 30, 2004
Leader: Liz Reanier, Guide: Rick Ahrens

Retired zoo specialist, Rick Ahrens, will be our guide at the Oregon Zoo (Portland). Rick makes the trip special—sharing his knowledge of all the animals. The Cascade Mountain Range simulation and the Pacific Aquarium are recently established exhibits. There are several places to buy your lunch (your cost). A four mile train ride is available ($2.75 + admission ticket would be your option and cost). The newer exhibits are near the entrance and food service and gift shop, so if you are limited in your walking you could enjoy these new areas and sit out on the deck and enjoy the view the remainder of the time.

Cost: $26 Member ($28 Non member)
Due: June 18
Reservations and Checks to: Janet Speelman, Phone 344-3019, 1496 West 28th Ave, Eugene 97405

Applegate House & more—Historic & New Cottage Grove Wednesday, July 7, 2004
Leader: Ethel Allen, Co-leader: Ray Jensen

We will tour the new Cottage Grove High School then go on to Drain and on to the Applegate Estate in Yoncalla. Shannon and Susan Applegate are planning our adventures, including a tour of the house. We will lunch under the historic trees. In the afternoon we will return to Cottage Grove, drive the South River Road, visit the Guy Leabo Miners Museum, the Cottage Grove Museum and drive by Clair Cooley’s childhood home. Clair and Ethel have many memories to share and stories to tell about local residents. On our way back to the freeway we’ll stop and admire the architecture of the new Cottage Grove Hospital.

Cost: $30 Member ($32 Non member)
Due: June 10
Reservations and Checks to: Nicole Chase, Phone 334-6832, 1609 Sylvan St, Eugene 97403

Tillamook, Oswald West and the Three Capes Tuesday–Wednesday, July 20–21, 2004
Leader: Bette Hack

We will leave SHOPKO at 8 am going on I-5 to Corvallis and then Hwy. 99 to Helmick State Park for our morning break. We will take Hwy. 22 to Hebo and then Hwy 101 into Tillamook. We will go to the Tillamook Cheese Visitor’s Center where you may wish to do the self guided tour and have lunch in the Farmhouse Cafe (your cost). There are no picnic facilities. We will leave early afternoon and visit the Pioneer Museum. Mid-afternoon we will travel to the Naval Air Museum. About 5:30 we will check in at the Shilo Inn, in Tillamook. There is a restaurant on the premises.

Day 2: We will head north to Oswald West State Park and those who wish may do the short hike through a beautiful area to Short Sand Beach. We will stop at Nehalem State Park for a short break and return to Tillamook where we will take Highway 6 to Cape Meares where we will visit the Octopus Tree and the Lighthouse and have lunch in the picnic area. After lunch we will stop at the bird refuge at Oceanside so bring binoculars. We will make other stops as time allows. We will drive to Otis Junction and return home via Hwy. 18.

Cost: $114 Member ($118 Non member)
Deposit: $50 now, Balance due: July 1
Reservations and Checks to: Mary Lee Cheadle, Phone 689-1085, 3225 Richards Ave, Eugene 97402

Gondola Ride to top of Willamette Ski Area Tuesday, August 10, 2004
Leader: Liz Reanier

Have you ever wondered what the bear saw on the other side of the mountain? Come find out! Ride the gondola (enclosed) to the top of the Willamette Pass Ski Area chairlift. You may get off and enjoy the sights and walk trails and picnic lunch if you like before riding back down. If you do not plan to ride the gondola you may enjoy walking around at the lodge and/or sit inside. Food service is available. After leaving the ski area we will stop at the Willamette Fish Hatchery and the Oakridge Museum before returning to Eugene. If you do not intend to ride the gondola, be sure to tell registrar.

Cost: $34 Member ($36 Non member)
If you do not plan to ride the gondola cost is $26 ( $28)
Due: August 3
Reservations and Checks to: Janet Speelman, Phone 344-3019, 1496 West 28th, Eugene 97405

Western Montana (Lewis & Clark Trail) Tuesday–Tuesday, August 24–31, 2004
Leader: Ray Jensen, Co-leaders: Liz Reanier, Ewart Baldwin

As our nation celebrates the Bicentennial of the Lewis & Clark Expedition, we will visit a number of important places on the explorer’s trail. Also included will be a number of attractions and points of interest never visited by Obsidian travelers. The weather should be pleasant in late summer, but prepare for variable conditions. The following itinerary may be changed slightly. A more detailed description will be available at a later time. Meals are the rider’s responsibility unless otherwise listed.


  • Aug 24 Hampton Inn, Richland, WA
  • Aug 25 Best Inn North, Missoula, MT
  • Aug 26 Bozeman Inn, Bozeman, MT
  • Aug 27,28 Jorgenson’s Inn, Helena, MT (2 nights)
  • Aug 29 The Inn on Broadway, Missoula, MT
  • Aug 30 Holiday Inn Express, Lewiston, ID

Scheduled Itinerary Highlights:

  • Day 1: Bonneville Dam — Lunch stop
    Columbia River Exhibition of History, Science & Technology
  • Day 2: Long travel day to Missoula, lose an hour
  • Day 3: Missoula to Bozeman via Deer Lodge, Grant-Kohrs Ranch, Old Montana Prison, Montana Auto Museum (all in Deer Lodge)
  • Day 4: Museum of the Rockies in Bozeman, Headwaters of the Missouri State Park near Three Forks, Cathedral of St. Helena
  • Day 5: All day in Helena area: Gates of the Mountains Boat Tour, Montana State Capitol, Montana Historical Museum
  • Day 6: Helena to Missoula via Butte
    Berkely Pit, Copper King Mansion, Fort Missoula
  • Day 7: Missoula to Lewiston via Lolo Pass, stops at Traveler’s Rest State Park, new Visitor Center at the Lolo Summit, Packer Meadows, Devoto Cedar Grove on the Lochsa River, and the Canoe Camp on the Clearwater River.
  • Day 8: Lewiston to Eugene (a long travel day)
    Whitman Mission mid morning break
    Lunch (included) Baldwin Saloon in The Dalles

Cost: $675 Member ($691 Non member)
Deposit: $75 now, $300 Due June 1, Balance Due: July 15
Reservations and Checks to: Rosella Jones, Phone 343-8939, 1844 Taylor St., Eugene 97405

Swan Island Dahlias Thursday, September 16, 2004
Leader: Ray Jensen, Co-leader: Ben Jeffries

North on I-5 Coffee break at Tualatin. To Oregon City for a view of the Willamette Falls. South on Hwy. 99E to Canby for the Swan Island Dahlia Gardens arriving about 10:30 a.m. Noon lunch at Molalla State Park on the Willamette River (your sack lunch.) Then to the nearby Flower Farms—goodies, produce, flowers, even a ride on a miniature train is available $3.50 optional, your cost. Depending on the time go to Downtown Canby and see the Depot and stop at Pacific Hazelnut outlet in Aurora. Home by 5:30 p.m.

Cost: $29 Member ($31 Non member)
Due: September 1
Reservations and Checks to: Pat Bitner, 485-3971, 1925 E. 25th, Eugene 97403

Hull Oakes Steam Sawmill Thursday, September 28, 2004
Leader: Ray Jensen

We have arranged a guided tour of the historic steam-powered sawmill located near Bellfountain. We will encounter stairways and narrow passages, so be advised of these restrictions. This trip is limited to 30 riders.

As usual, we will leave V.R.C. at 8:00 a.m. and stop for our coffee break at the Bellfountain Park. The tour begins at 9:30, and will probably take about 90 minutes to complete.

Next, we will travel the Alsea Falls Road and go up to Mary’s Peak for our sack lunches, with an optional hike to the summit.

In mid-afternoon, we will go on to the Finley Wildlife Refuge, and include the one-mile loop hike on the Woodpecker Trail.

Weather and road conditions may alter these plans. For additional information contact the leader at 345-5366.

Cost: $23 Member ($25 Non member)
Due: September 5
Reservations and Checks to: Janet Speelman, 344-3019, 1496 West 28th, Eugene 97405

Alturas, Lava Beds, Klamath Falls Tuesday–Thursday, October 5–7, 2004
Leader: Ewart Baldwin, Co-leader: Ray Jensen

A great chance to see parts of the Applegate Trail.

  • Day 1: 8 a.m. leave Shopko on Coburg Road traveling Hwy. 58 with a stop at Oakridge and on to Fort Rock, Summer Lake and Lakeview. Then over Fandango Pass into Surprise Valley to Fort Bidwell. Then south to Cedarville. Overnight in Alturas.
  • Day 2: Drive to Lava Beds National Monument and go to the new headquarters. We will probably stop at the Vermillion Cave, then to Captain Jack’s Stronghold. The next stop will be at the Wildlife Refuge Headquarters and small museum and lower Klamath Lake, then to a museum at Tule Lake then into Klamath Falls for the night.
  • Day 3: We’ll cross Green Springs summit with rest stop at Tub Springs State Wayside, then past Ashland and Medford with a possible stop at the Valley of the Rogue Park. Then past Merlin and west to Hells Gate and Indian Mary Camp for lunch. Then to the Applegate Trail Interpretive Center in Sunny Valley along Grave Creek and home with a stop at Rice Hill if time allows.

Cost: $190 Member ($196 Non member)
Deposit: $50 now, Balance Due: September 10
Reservations and Checks to: Rosella Jones, Phone 343-8939, 1844 Taylor St. Eugene 97405

Fall Color Drive Thursday, October 21, 2004
Leader: Bette Hack

We will leave Eugene going through Springfield and the Mohawk Valley taking the cutoff to the Santiam Hwy. where we will go through Sweet Home and continue on to Cascadia State Park. Here we will have our morning break and spend a little time in the area. We will continue up the Santiam until we take the cutoff to the McKenzie and when we reach McKenzie Bridge we will stop at the Log Cabin Inn for lunch (included). We will return via the McKenzie Highway.

Cost: $32 Member ($34 Non member)
Due: October 1
Reservations and Checks to: Mary Lee Cheadle, Phone 689-1085, 3225 Richards Ave, Eugene 97402

Christmas Lights — Portland Friday, December 10, 2004 Deepwood Estate Tuesday, December 14, 2004
Leader: Bette Hack

Note the change in date and destination. Lunch (included) at the Deepwood Manor in Salem. More to do in the p.m. For rides let Bette & Pat know.

Cost: $38 Member ($40 Non member)
Reservations and Checks to: Pat Bitner, Phone 485-3971, 1925 E. 26th, Eugene 97403

Future Plans:

  1. For the Lewis and Clark Bicentennial, a fabulous nation wide touring exhibition will be shown at the Oregon History Center in Portland November 14 to March 11. We will plan a day trip.
  2. In mid February 2005 an overnight to Klamath Falls to again witness the Eagles Flyaway plus the fantastic bird life in the Klamath Falls Area. Rick Ahrens will be our guide.
  3. A three to five day trip to Eastern Oregon for the John Day Fossil Beds. We will visit the Painted Hills unit and also the new museum and Visitor Center at the Sheeprock unit. Perhaps go on to Baker City. First week in June 2005.

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Bus Trips - Details Of Participation

  1. GENERAL INFORMATION: Your trip fees include transportation, lodging and taxes, museum fees, admission charges, donations in lieu of admission fees, the tip for the driver and the daily trip fees. Meals are not included, except where specified in a trip write up. Personal expenses are not covered. Bring your own sack lunch and non-alcoholic beverage. We schedule frequent rest stops and usually lunch at wayside parks. Be sure to check write-ups for details. Wear your name tags at all times. Wear sensible walking shoes and bring your Golden Age pass. We also always carry water.
  2. WHO IS ELIGIBLE: Any Obsidian may sign up for these trips. Non-members must be accompanied by an Obsidian host and are welcome to join us. The trip leader has the authority to exclude anyone who may present a danger to the group or to himself because of physical, medical or emotional conditions.
  3. TRANSPORTATION: We charter buses from Oregon Coachways, which are modern, safe, clean, comfortable, air-conditioned and have an on board toilet facility. Their drivers are experienced and well trained to insure enjoyable traveling.
    1. ONE DAY TRIPS: We load at the Valley River Center parking lot north of the footbridge. (Due west of Bon-Macy’s)
    2. MULTI DAY TRIPS: We load at Shopko on Coburg Road near the bus stop on Coburg Road.
    3. LOADING INFORMATION: Usually we load at 7:45 a.m., departing promptly at 8:00 a.m. and return between 5 and 6 p.m. These times are subject to change so always check the monthly Obsidian Bulletin and any trip descriptions for details. On extended trips we encourage you to arrange private transportation to the loading site. We suggest that you do not leave your car overnight. Also please notify the trip leader if you must cancel at the last minute.
  5. COSTS OF TRIPS: Costs are estimated far in advance. Trip Leaders anticipate the number of riders, transportation costs, entrance fees, tips, donations, etc., lodging (2 persons, 2 beds) and the daily fee to the Club. The leaders volunteer their time and pay the same as all other riders. Please carry you Golden Age Pass, as it sometimes reduces our fees.
  6. LODGING: Room costs are based on booking for non-smoking, 2 persons, 2 beds. You are requested to select you roommate. Sometimes the leader or reservations person can assist you in that selection. The final selection is the riders responsibility. If you need special considerations, let the leader know. Frequently there are no elevators, so pack luggage you can carry up a flight of stairs. Be sure your luggage is labeled.
  7. POLICY FOR SINGLES:  We encourage the single traveler to participate. Occasionally, we can provide a single room, at a much higher rate. Remember that our basic policy is 2 persons, 2 beds.
  8. PAYMENT: Make a SEPARATE CHECK FOR EACH TRIP, payable to the OBSIDIANS BUS TRIP ACCOUNT. Please observe the due dates for payments, especially when advance deposits are required. Priority on trips is based on the dates you paid in full.
  9. WAITING LIST: A waiting list will be maintained if a trip is over subscribed. Only persons sincerely interested in participating should sign up. If your interests or availability changes — please inform the reservations person and/or the leader. The leader makes the ultimate selection based on the vacancy.
  10. CANCELLATIONS: Leaders frequently must make guarantees and large payments 30 days in advance. Often motels require room lists 4 weeks in advance. Cancellations cause problems. If you must cancel, inform the leader as soon as possible so adjustments can be made. Persons on the waiting list have priority. The leader ultimately selects the replacement, subject to the approval of the roommate.
  11. REFUNDS: On one day trips refunds will not be made unless cancellations are made in advance. On multi-day trips partial or full refunds may occur if cancellations are made one week in advance of the trip. Any refund is also contingent upon recovery of lodging costs, fees prepaid, admissions, etc. Refunds will only be made if a trip has generated a surplus; such refund will be determined after the trip when all financial data has been examined.
  12. REBATES: Sometimes rebates may be awarded at the end of our trip season, if a trip had a substantial excess in revenue.
  13. INSURANCE: Our charter bus companies carry the required liability and accident insurance. All riders are expected to provide their own medical, liability and accident insurance. Obsidians, Inc. requires each rider to sign a release prior to each trip. In addition, the Bus Committee requires that you fill out a medical information form that will be carried in a sealed envelope on all trips you participate in. This form will be used in the event of an emergency, thus the data must be updated annually. It will be held confidential. If you have serious updates during the season, please file a new form. Notify the reservations person if you do not have the form. Read trip descriptions, talk to the leaders and determine if you will be able to participate in planned activities.
  14. SIGN UP: Signing up for a trip shows interest in taking the trip and your intent to pay the costs by the due date. Keep track of trips you sign for so you can pay on time and also keep the leader informed if you must cancel. Leaders use the rally sign-up to determine if a trip must be canceled and also use the list to make the detailed, special arrangements that make our trips special. We welcome additional riders, so check with reservations and/or leader if interested at a later date.
  15. FINAL NOTE: Dates, itineraries or boarding sites may be changed so watch the monthly Obsidian Bulletin for updates. A waiting list will be maintained if a trip is over subscribed. Following is a description for each of our 2004 offerings. Multi-day trips have detailed descriptions nearer departure date. We hope you will find the trips appealing and will join us for an enjoyable experience.

BUS COMMITTEE: Ray Jensen, Chairman. Bette Hack, Secretary. Evelyn Hile, Treasurer. Lenore McManigal, Auditor. Ethel Allen, Ewart Baldwin, Lloyd Bissell, Patricia Bitner, John Borchardt, Marian Borchardt, Nicole Chase, Mary Lee Cheadle, Clair Cooley, Ben Jeffries, Rosella Jones, Dodie Leppmann, Frances Newsom, Elizabeth Reanier, Janet Speelman, Richard Speelman, Vera Woolley.


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