With the arrival of springlike weather, Team Toto has ventured into the State of Oregon. This will be a recurring theme this year; we’ll head back to Oregon for three more trips this year, unless we think of more to add.
We’ll share details of this first trip — to the annual Spring Northern Oregon Gathering of Fiberglass Trailers — soon (any minute now), but first we want to share a… a log blog.
Okay, so stare into the fire (just like you would if you were there in front of it. That’s what campfires are for, sometimes). But before your eyes glaze over, note the oddly symmetrical logs we have going here.
We can take time out to discuss the background. It’s campground Loop A at Waterloo County Park, located in Lebanon, Oregon. I’ll admit that the photo would be more dramatic if the Grand Canyon or perhaps Devil’s Tower back there instead of some weeds and one of the scores of fiberglass trailers surrounding us.
But there is drama here… there are these logs. They are composed entirely of wood pellets (the kind you use in a pellet stove). Compressed sawdust, I suppose. The pellets have united to form the shape of highly regular logs, and that is possible because I dumped the pellets into log-shaped baskets made of stainless steel wire.
No, I didn’t invent these log-baskets — this other fellow did (you can read about ’em here). This was my very first attempt at building and enjoying a campfire using these gadgets, and I’m happy to report success.
Take out the log-baskets (they nest together to save space and weigh next to nothing). Pour pellets into the openings (note: best to point the openings toward the sky, so as to keep all the pellets inside the log-baskets). Light with newspaper or other handy item (I used paraffin fire-starters). Kick back. Stare. Feel Warm.
The fire works like regular fires. It’s warmer for a while, and then starts to calm down. It’s easy to dump more pellets into the log-baskets if you want to prolong your evening of meditation, campfire singing, or, in my case, listening to the baseball.
On this particular night, Sooz and the boys wanted to chill out in Toto’s luxurious lounge. So it was just me out there, with my Repose Fire Logs, and my nice fire, and the very talented Aaron Goldsmith doing the play-by-play. And a cup of pinot gris that kept becoming empty, which afforded me the opportunity to check in with the rest of the family from time to time.
I like these logs. Over the course of three days at the NOG, I had three fires, and used up a 10-pound bag of pellets. No firewood to buy or bring with me, no worries about accidental transport of wood-borne pests. We will take ’em along on our next trip, too.
I should disclose here that the fellow who markets the Repose Fire Logs actually provided them to me, at no cost, because I promised to take ’em along and take some pictures and send them his way, which I will surely do. I don’t have any interest in his venture, and if you find yourself enjoying your very own Repose Fire Logs some day, I won’t get anything out of it except karma brownie points. And they will be fine.Sharing is caring!
Following is daring.