CF Road Trip – Day 1: Portland

3 am is very early.

I’m not really a fan of this time, however, it arrives no matter what. When the alarm went off, we did our best zombie impressions & got our rental van packed up, dogs out to go potty and hit the road.


It’s pretty dark out at 3,4,5am until the sun finally decides to join us on our trip. Everyone in the car fell asleep, our driver of course. After about 3 hours we stopped for a much need bathroom & coffee. Dutch Bros. coffee, though often heralded as an amazing experience, didn’t really live up to the hype in our groups’ opinion. But the Shell gas station bathroom in Redding was exactly what was needed!

Back on the road, with caffeine fueling us, the conversation flowed as easily as the miles. Now heading into Oregon through a bit of fog can make it difficult for pictures, but as soon as it breaks, the views are breathtaking. Trees EVERYWHERE! The hills, mountains, valleys all make for a beautiful landscape of creation that has to be seen to be believed. Only thing to be mindful of is the lower speed limit & the “more relaxed” drivers.


It was time to eat. A quick Yelp search turned up a promising place in Medford…that was closed. An organic place across the street…was empty (not really a good sign in my opinion). So another search led us back across the highway to the Buttercloud Bakery & Café.

The menu is smaller, the eating area similarly proportioned. Everything was handmade, the service was good, and the French Press coffee was a nice change from the standard café fare. All the biscuits are made on-site and the ways they mix and match proteins with sauces, vegetables, and other items made for an interesting experience.


Back on the road again (we didn’t stop as much as I thought, even though it sort of sounds like it), we made it to Portland just in time for traffic. Okay, traffic is relative, but when you’ve been in the car as long as we have and have been comfortably cruising at 70-80, any slow down feels like the end of the world. But with a little patience & perseverance (and help from WAZE) we finally arrived at our AirBNB house in Portland, Oregon.

The house is nice, older, but has the 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms we need; after all it’s just a place to put our stuff & sleep at night. Of course, we didn’t have a ton of time to relax as we had a 4:30 class to make it to at CrossFit 503.


Darren’s box is right down by the water and in a nice, large space. The office manager (resident puppy) Luna greeted us right away. After browsing the rack of shirts we signed in and made our way out to the gym. Lots of room here. Oly lifting in the back, lots of C2 rowers, AirDyne bikes, a sled space carved out between the horse mats and a full wall mounted rack along the longest wall. Nice touches were the space for members to keep their shoes, lockers, and space for bags, water bottles, etc. instead of having them all over the place, wherever suits the athlete.

The WOD itself was pretty straightforward and with a fairly large class, we were happy that this box is quite large. They have adequate space, equipment and friendly people. After the workout, we cleaned, chatted a bit, took the requisite pictures (IG:cfpnwroadtrip) and said our goodbyes. My performance in the WOD left something to be desired, but overall, a nice way to start the week.

From there it back to the house to clean-up, dinner at a local restaurant, and hit the sack, worn out from the long day but happy we made the effort & looking forward to the rest of the trip. More detailed reviews of the box & restaurants will be added to Yelp soon.

Tomorrow: Seattle.


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