T Nation

Phoenix to Portland Road Trip for Workshop

I’m planning on taking a road trip to Portland from Phoenix to attend a workshop hosted by Mike Mahler and Christian Thibaudeau on Saturday, August 16th, 2003. More information can be found out about this workshop in the thread in the Lair of the Ice Dog forum or by emailing Mike Mahler.

The drive will approximately be 18 hours long. Who from the Phoenix metropolitan area or nearby would like to go with me? We can take my ride and split gas and driving time. I would not do the drive alone.

A lot of the attendees, as well as the hosts, are planning on doing Strongman training the night before, Friday, with Patricia and Ko. I would, of course, like to do this so it would be necessary to leave Thursday, probably mid-afternoon in order to arrive by Friday mid-morning.

Patricia and Ko have graciously offered to allow a few of the guys to stay at there place. They have enough floor space for about 5 or 6 guys. That is one option. A second would be to stay overnight on Friday & Saturday, or to drive back late Saturday night.

If you are interested in doing this, please respond here in this thread, PM me, or contact me via email so we can finalize the plans.

An 18 hour drive to Oregon, strongman training w/ the T-gang and Mike & Christian, an 8 hour workshop being schooled on kettlebell & conditioning by Mike and olympic lifting by Christian, and I’m sure many, many eating occasions. It will be a fun experience.

Bump for Machine.

C’mon, all. All he wants to do is hoist some heavy weight. Help a brother out!

Note: Even if you guys plan on arriving late Thursday - let us know, too! Late Thursday arrivals can stay the night at our place. And yes, lots of food being planned. I may need some help in grocery shopping, guys! Entertainment will be various DVD action oriented movies and maybe some Worlds Strongest Man contest videos.

Also, a warning: by sleeping in our living room, you’ll all have to get useto a parrot that sounds JUST like Ko and has a penchant to say “what?” or “did you poop?” Besides ALOT of other stuff.

Sorry, Machine- I’ll be on the other coast at a wedding that weekend. Sounds like an awesome trip though- I’d be all over it otherwise. Good luck!

Thanks Ike for reminding me I had to post an update about this.

I found out that right after the workshop I’m going to be vacationing w/ my family in San Diego. I would be driving from Portland to SD, instead of going back to Phoenix. I doubt anyone is going to want to ride w/ me there and have to fly back or find a way home. If anyone still does then let me know.

Patricia I need help in planning a vaction that week can you help me out??? please… I will be flying alone… Going form NJ to portland, OR…

Patricia: I’ll have to persuade Norcross and the rest 'em from SJ to go up early should he decide to do the workshop. Thursday night would good.

If by help at the grocery store you mean chipping in some $$ and carrying the groceries (though I know you could do by yourself) then I’m more than willing to do that. Sheesh, for offering up your house I better to do something. But if you’re expecting me to know anything about cooking, then you’ll be disappointed.

Also, I already planned on bringing ear plugs. Hopefully they’ll drown out the parrot.

Machine, I admire your commitment. I guarantee you that the trip will be well worth the trouble.

Mike Mahler

Machine, dude: we got the chef, we just gotta plan for all the varying dietary needs of everyone! I know that a grocery run will definitely need to be done once everyone is up here. But that’ll be planned as the event draws nearer.

I’m glad you’re coming up - as well as the rest of the N. Calif gang. Gonna be pretty cool. As for the parrot? Trust me. You’ll wanna hear everything he (and our other parrots) say - they’re a hoot! He also does a mean imitation of a fart. I kid you not. (We’re so proud of our “kiddies”)

I’ll make it easy for you Patricia. My dietary needs on vaction are simple… FOOD!! And I’m sure Ko will do an excellent job should he be preparing it. I don’t think he’ll be able to make everyone’s favorite so any food is good food.

I will want to hear the parrots talk and do the fart imitation but not at the expense of sleeping. I imagine I’ll be pretty worn out after strongman training & the workshop. That is too funny about your parrots. You should’ve kept the fart imitation a secret. I might have been thinking Norcross was doing it.

Fitone: If you are planning on a week in Portland, understand that Patricia and I will be busy with work,training, preparing for the weekend etc., and will not be able to show you around, or “hang out”.

Also while we are more than willing to let people stay the weekend, we won’t be putting anyone up for a week so you will need to find a hotel for at least the first part of the week. I am currently working with Mike to find a hotel in the area.

If you are coming out here, I recommend you only come for the weekend. Otherwise I would try to get someone to come with you. Otherwise you are on your own for most of the week.

Ko I hoping to planning my own vac around that time… out there just hoping if u have some suggestion on what I can do out there… not asking for a place to stay… Sorry if you misunderstood me… I know u all have busy lives… I just looking for activities that I can do… Such like rock climbing, ect… outdoors stuff…


If you want a really good way to get to Portland, and this is coming from a professional traveler –

If I were you, I’d fly using a dominant airline from your airport (Phoenix). I can’t tell which one’s the dominant one at your place (I know the hubs for almost all airlines, but not sure who has a hub in Phoenix, or even if it’s a hub for any major airline…). Many big airlines have special weekly specials/offers which requires a Saturday night stay. Or you can fly Southwest, which is not my favorite airline, but cheap, or BlueJet (?) which is another discount airline. The funny thing about Phoenix, Portland, and San Diego is that none of them are that HUGE (not compared to LAX, SFO, DEN, IAD, JFK, etc.) so you may have a better selection of discount airlines.

From Portland Airport to downtown Portland (to Heathman, where Ko works if you’re going to arrive there early enough to catch Ko working and get some good food at his restaurant), take a train for about $1.50 or so. Take it back to the airport and fly to San Diego. Driving’s not going to be that great given that the gas price is ridiculous plus you have to spend a lot of time in a car. Your time may be worth more than the money you may or may not save from driving (opportunity cost, for the econ/finance majors).

From San Diego Airport, you can have your family pick you up or take a shuttle bus or a taxi to wherever you need to go to. Don’t ever accept a ride from a “taxi” driver who approaches you since most of them don’t have proper permit to operate taxis/limos.

You’re really lucky that you’re not too far from Portland and San Diego. I live too far to drive to any of those places…actually I don’t like to drive more than 2 hrs (I prefer to fly if I have to drive more than 2 hrs).

If you plan to drive, make sure you have a cell phone and/or AAA plan, just in case your car refuses to cooperate with you for any reason.


I second Ko’s post. They’re REALLY busy! :smiley: (But very fun to hang out w/ when they have time on the weekends…)

I suggest Hilton Towers (ask for the executive tower rooms – they’re newer and the beds are very nice) or Heathman, where Ko works. Both hotels are excellent and very affordable…about $100-130/night at the most. Close to museums and the train system. Get a rental car and drive to the famous J-Garden, etc. or use the public transport. And plan to shop cuz Portland is TAX FREE! :smiley:

Instead of spending your entire week in Portland, you may want to drive/fly to Seattle also. Downtown Seattle’s very nice, and has excellent hotels, esp. the W Hotel.

Stelle, Thanks for the indoor stuff that I can do out there… Now I need some outdoor fun… I know they got to have rock climbing and stuff like that out there…

Stella, I figure I’d be spending in the range of $200-$250 if I flew out to Portland & then to San Diego. As a business major, I’m definitely aware of opportunity cost and you’re right that the time factor is an issue.

Provided I have no car trouble, it would be a lot less trouble than the airports. And a lot less expensive. Most of the flights I checked online seem to have stops and are about ~5 hours long. Pack on luggage and the hassle of airports and it’s not worth it for me.

Also, now that I’m heading to San Diego after Portland, I will need my car for the trip home to Phoenix.

There are plenty of outdoor activites to do. Unfortunately about the only outdoor activity I take part in any more, is fishing. Other than that you are on your own. There are plenty of climbing shops around that could tell you where to go.

fishing is cool also… Thanks… I look into it…

Machine, Patricia and ko - I’m looking forward to the road trip. I think it could be a lot of fun to travel through some beautiful country also.

Anyway, I’m looking forward to this. The biggest question that we (Kelly and I) are dealing with is whether she is going to come or not. I’m totally up for Strongman training on Friday night although that is nuts if we’re going to spend 8 hours with Mike and CT. Since most of you have never been through Mike’s workshops, you are in for a serious kick in the rear and I can only imagine what CT has in store for us.

Anyway, with all the activity we’d have planned for that weekend (and the Inferno Challenge will be over), it will be time to seriously chow down and I’m looking forward to not only sampling some of ko’s magic, but to checking out whatever else is available in Portland.


There is an insane amount of outdoor stuff to do in Oregon, particularly during the summer. You can:

  1. Climb Mt. Hood (the 2nd most climbed Mountain in the world, btw.)
  2. Hit the coast
  3. Kayak/raft in any number of rivers
  4. Go Rock climbing at Smith Rock, in central oregon. It’s one of the finest outdoor rockclimbing sites in the entire US.

If you need more details, PM me.