2009 Ford Flex Long-Term Road Test

2009 Ford Flex: An Olympic Journey Day 2

February 23, 2010

Ford Flex at the Space Needle

After ending Day 1 in Medford, Team Flex set out into the wilds of Oregon with our sights set on Seattle. Unlike the pristine weather on Day 1 and actually throughout the trip, it rained for most of Sunday. Nothing torrential, just a steady rain interspersed with fog in the Cascades.

The Flex's windshield wipers are still holding up after almost 50,000 miles (not that they get used a lot), and despite Donna's complaints, I found that the rear wiper did the job well enough given the inherent design limitation of the back window. Would a double wiper be better? Perhaps, but then it would share something with a Camry wagon and that wouldn't be good for anyone.

Day 2: Medford, Oregon, to Lynnwood, Washington
Total Miles: 464 miles

The rain certainly provided us the quintessential Pacific Northwest experience, but the thing about Oregon I noticed the most was sheep. They were everywhere -- in the green fields, on the green hills -- and generally looked quite content. Along with the cows, horses, goats and three llamas, I think I'd choose Oregon for my place of residence if I were to be reincarnated as livestock. These are the things you think about while driving through the rain in Oregon with your three passengers asleep.

Ford Flex at Voodoo Doughnuts in Portland

Our first stop was in Portland and specifically, Voodoo Doughnuts. On the Suzuki Kizashi press trip, they brought a couple boxes of these to our mid-way driver change at the foot of Mt. St. Helens (the non-blowed-up side) and I knew we had to stop at Voodoo. 'Great,' you're saying, 'A doughnut shop. I have a Dunkin Donuts or a Krispy Kreme or a Tim Hortons down the road.' Perhaps, but those aren't Voodoo Doughnuts. See that big Maple Bar? You can get that with bacon on it (though not the day we were there). See the Cap'n Crunch one? See the Oreo cookie one? The Butterfinger Chocolate cake one in the upper right? The purple one is the Grape Ape with grape drink powder on it. The white one has lemonade powder on it. You can also get one with Tang, plus an Oreo one with chocolate icing and drizzled peanut butter. Folks around Edmunds HQ thought my Olympic trip sounded cool, but they started planning their own Pacific Northwest trips when I showed them the picture below. I told them just press 'Voodoo 1' in the Flex's navigation address book.

Voodoo Doughnuts.jpg

Back to motoring. Since Portland is right on the Columbia River, we crossed into Washington munching on delicious doughnuts (I had the Grape Ape). We also got our first glimpse at Vancouver ... the Washington one, sure, but it was exciting nonetheless. The rest of the drive through the Evergreen State was uninteresting, especially me trying to pinpoint where in Seattle Frasier Crane's condominium building was located. Judging on the location of the Space Needle and downtown, I'd say it was located on a helicopter hovering over the hill I think is known as North Admiral.

We stayed north of the city in Lynnwood, but we headed into downtown for Valentine's Day dinner. Finding a parking spot wasn't easy, but when I finally did, I turned around to get something I forgot in the Flex. The top photo is what I saw: the unintentional perfect Seattle view. Well, except for Frasier's fake condo.

James Riswick, Automotive Editor @ 49,151 miles

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Edmunds Insurance Estimator

The Edmunds TCO® estimated monthly insurance payment for a 2009 Ford Flex in VA is:

$130 per month*
* Explanation