I expected a great week, and Washington did not disappoint. We settled in Sequim Bay National Park for most of the week. Great place; the internet was strong and the views were scenic:
We took a couple walks out on this dock where we could see starfish, jellyfish, and crabs. Seeing my girls get excited about nature like that was a great reminder of why we’re doing this.
I had all my work done by Thursday, so we broke camp and headed West. While my mom is traveling with us, we’re trying a cover a little more ground than normal and make the most of her time with us. Here’s our spot at a little park West of Port Angeles. Across the water is the foreign enemy territory of Canada:
This was an old WWII bunker near our campsite. Judging from the conditions inside, it’s now a place where teenagers gather to examine the ethical and moral dilemmas of military theory over cheap beer.
A choppier, colder shoreline:
Check out this leveling job; my most ambitious to date:
Ugh, I’m reluctant to even include this part, but it’s such a strange anomaly that I have to record it: we watch Project Runway. When we were in Indy after my dad died, my oldest daughter Carrie got hooked on that show, and then my sister bought her a DVD set of one of the seasons. And now we all watch it.
Amy, the girls, and my mom did some more exploring the next day along the shore:
After lunch, we hit the road and headed toward Olympic National Park, stopping at a few spots along the way.
I am trying hard to capture the awesomeness of these rain forests, but it just isn’t happening. There’s moss everywhere, and it’s beautiful. Mile after mile.
This is one of dozens of photos I’ve taken just looking up at the trees. I know we’ll see bigger trees when we get to northern California, but these trees are pretty huge. And I can’t stop looking up at them.
One of our stops was at Lake Crescent. Crystal clear water. I wanted to drink it.
My mom traveled a lot as a kid, so she has fit right in:
From one of our walks in the rain forest:
We were well off the grid at this point, and our camp site at Sol Duc in Olympic National Park had no electricity or hookups of any kind.
It was simultaneously uncomfortable and liberating not having internet or cell service. Due to the season, it gets dark so early (and even darker deep in the forest). Once all the iDevices died, there was really nothing else to do except go to sleep. It was great.
It had been mostly overcast up until this point, but the next morning there was a cloudless blue sky and a morning sun that sent sun rays piercing through the morning mist.
This tree is 550 years old!
During a walk, we encountered a well-hung elk with a multi-point rack. It’s mating season, so we had seen warning signs advising people to stay far away from the elk (elk charge). I know you can’t really see much of the elk here, but this photo is more about us being ready to run.
That night, we stayed at Bogachiel State Park in Forks Washington. We don’t have many campfires (too much trouble), so when we do it’s sort of a big deal.
I was slightly apprehensive about returning to this park; this is where we were on August 1st when we got the call that my dad had died. But it felt good to be back, if only to balance a sad memory with a happier one.
It may not seem so, but efficiently stacking 5 bikes on a bike rack is more complicated than solving a rubik’s cube. I took this photo so I could both document and replicate my achievement today:
An alternative application of moss:
Today we took a ferry from Port Townsend to Whidbey Island. Here we are waiting in line to drive onto the ferry. (Amy was with the car in another line. They keep us big rigs together ;)
On the ferry:
Off the ferry, just in time for sunset:
We’re stopped for the night in Oak Harbor on Whidbey Island at some city RV park. The first place we stopped was at a beautiful park, but it was also an internet black hole. Here we have full hookups for only $20!
I’m looking forward to Tuesday: a trip to Microsoft headquarters [insert evil music]…