While John’s parents were here visiting, we decided to go apple picking. There were no orchards near Austin, and we hadn’t been since a quick jaunt after watching Jonathan skate in Milwaukee a few years ago. So for our first full fall in Oregon, we made it a priority to take an apple picking excursion.
We picked a farm that was relatively close by us, that had Honeycrisps (my favorite) ripe and ready, and that would allow Maxwell in the orchard, and headed over.
The main barn was quite pretty and nicely arranged with flags, an old scale, a piano, and various items (orchard honey!) for sale ….
… but sadly the experience was not quite what we expected. When I was young (in Illinois), and the last time we went (in Wisconsin), apple picking is an Event involving perhaps a ride out to the orchard, ladders, climbing, exploring the lanes for the best fruit.
At the left of this photo, though, you can see the edge of the orchard:
… and you might notice that the trees are very, very short, which made for a much different experience than we’d expected. No “long two-pointed ladder sticking through the tree,” no feeling “the ladder sway as the boughs bend.”**
Each tree was maybe 6-8 feet tall, and absolutely loaded with apples in various stages of ripeness. I believe we each visited a handful of trees in a handful of minutes, and had as much fruit as we could possibly want; John and I came home with over 10 pounds. (I should say – plenty of “apples I didn’t pick upon some bough”** !)
Excellent for obtaining a cheap, easy, and fresh supply … not so great for a fall harvest afternoon of fun. I didn’t even get any photos after this last one of the barn, it all went by so quickly. Walk out, nab some apples, bam. Done.
I think we’ll probably revisit the same place, when we just need to restock our supply of apples, but try to find another place (maybe a pumpkin farm?) for a more autumny experience, sometime before the rain starts for real.
** Robert Frost, “After Apple-picking”