six amazing kids from our neighborhood held hands
in an effort to reach all the way around this cedar tree.
1) Drive 1.5 hours north-east of Salem.
2) Park when you reach the end of Forest Road 2209 and load your food and supplies on to the Opal Creek Ancient Forest Center gear shuttle.
3) Leisurely walk the 3 mile trail to Jawbone Flats. Be sure to stop and enjoy a picnic lunch, impromptu swim, and breathtaking view.
4) Enter Jawbone Flats (population 12) and have a seat in the comfort of Cabin #4. Kick back, relax, and praise an off 'the grid' system that provides lights, a full kitchen, flush toilets, and hot showers.
In my experience, two nights and three days at Opal Creek is the perfect length for families with young children. For us, such a weekend is like our own private outdoor school; a personalized family retreat; an un-plugged & off-line slumber party of fun. Climbing into the car for the ride home after this trip, my six year-old said it best: "When can we do that again?"