About Oregon Eclipse Camp
Roger, Walker (The Boss), Kevin, and Bryan
“You know what you have here?” Jim asked, glancing at each of us. “The best damn eclipse camp spot in the whole state.“
Featured in Seattle Times as one of the Last-ditch places to stay in Oregon to view next month’s solar eclipse
We were pretty sure of that already, but it was nice to hear it from someone who hadn’t been caught up in the challenges of finding the perfect location and bringing the vision to reality. The three of us had spent weeks narrowing down exactly what we were looking for, and more importantly ruling out what we weren’t looking for. We knew this was the right place, but would our prospective campers? Jim answered that for us.
“Right smack-in-the-middle of the path. A real camping spot, not some mowed down weed patch beside the highway. The view doesn’t get any better, anywhere. Not a house in sight.”
“Know what’s even better? Peace and quiet. Those folks trying to get to Bend that weekend are gonna be bumper-to-bumper all the way from Portland, but none of them ever heard of Unity. It may be farther away, but I bet that weekend it’s a shorter drive. Sure, there’ll be plenty of people here but nothing like the half a million tryin’ to squeeze in every flat spot off the road over there.”
Jim was telling us in his own words everything we had agreed on the day before when the three of us scouted the site, and everything we had on our list of “must-haves” since the day we decided to find campsites for other people and not just ourselves.
Like most camping-type people, we had a “plan” to find ourselves a great location on public land away from the crowds and invite our friends to join us. We had a good list of places we know and were discussing our plan for “staking” one out weeks prior to the eclipse. A chance conversation with a Bureau of Land Management ranger turned to talk of eclipse weekend, and we mentioned the “xxxxx” area.
“Oh, yeah. We are going to be busy in there for sure. We’ve had people calling and asking about that area for months now. It’s going to be a mess. That whole path is gonna be crawling with people, and some of them are gonna do dumb things. We’ll be really lucky if no one lights the whole thing on fire by that Friday night.”
Well, so much for our “secret” spots. Back to the drawing board.
What about renting a piece of private land for the weekend? Between the three of us, we know a lot of landowners in the path and surely we could find one who would take a few bucks from us, right?
Now wait a minute…. if we live, camp, hike, and ride here and we are having a hard time finding a spot, how are people who’ve never been to eastern Oregon going to find their spots?
And that’s how Oregon Eclipse Camp came about. We hope you will come join us.
Kevin Boylan is a veteran whitewater rafting guide who hung up his oars to concentrate on his art (which you can find at http://www.kevinboylanglass.com), and to be around for the soon-to-arrive Baby Boylan!
Bryan Grimshaw is a custom contractor when he isn’t floating a river or finding some back corner of eastern Oregon to conquer on foot.
Roger Barnes is a long-time manager at Legacy Ford in La Grande, and a new employee of seven-month-old Walker who seems to think diapers just grow on trees.
We are your Oregon Eclipse Camp team, and our goal is to provide you with a way to make your 2017 Eclipse experience the once-in-a-lifetime memory you are looking for.