Wednesday, March 3, 2010

The Road

After an incredible vacation in Salida with great visits from friends and family, I stuffed all the things I'll need in Alaska into 2 backpacks and I was ready to go. For now, it seems like I'm not bringing very much but I know once my tent becomes my house, and I have to travel on small planes and boats, I will suddenly feel like I have way too much stuff.
Bag sandwhich!

Craig and I hit the road in the morning, Boise being our first stop. After driving through thick fog all through Idaho, we crossed the state line into Oregon where blue skies and a bright sun promptly greeted us. For the past three years, I have felt really drawn to Oregon and am considering that as a great place to end up after Alaska. We drove along the Northern part of the state, through the Columbia River Gorge, and then up to Washington where we would spend our off day in Olympic National Park.

*picture on craigs camera, will upload when i get it from him*
Horsetail Falls, Columbia River Gorge

It was dark by the time we set up camp in the park so we were pleasantly surprised when we woke up surrounded by gorgeous green rainforest. I’m not exaggerating when I say everything was green. Every last tree branch was covered in bright green moss with green bushes and ferns all over the forest floor.

Campsite in the rainforest, Olympic National Park

Even the lakes are green!

The next two days included crossing the border into Canada and driving through British Columbia. Half of the days were absolutely beautiful and I felt as though I was driving on Going to The Sun Road in Glacier National Park. The other half were rainy and foggy and you could see just enough to know you were missing out on some beautiful views. Hopefully we can catch what we missed on the way home in the fall. Oh and FYI, if you ever plan on tent camping in Canada in February, prepare to be laughed at. :) Both nights we pulled up to RV parks/campgrounds (that’s all that’s open this time of year) in the pouring rain to meet friendly, welcoming hosts that weren’t afraid to comment on how crazy we were. After camping in the rain for the fourth night in a row, I was a)thankful it wasn’t snow, b)grateful for having a quality tent that keeps me dry and c) realizing this is what I signed up for the next 5 months and that it is all totally worth it.
Driving around the park was not as easy as we had hoped, as no roads go through the park, only around it. This would be an awesome place for backcountry hiking and camping but since we only had one day, this wasn’t an option. We still enjoyed all that we had time to see, including some really beautiful lakes and rivers that, surprise!, also looked green, made it out to Ruby Beach, and then camped at a state park north of Seattle.

*picture on craigs camera, will upload when i get it from him*
Ruby Beach

1 comment:

John Haley said...

Man, I caught way better weather than you. It barely rained on me at all my whole time in WA and OR. Glad you enjoyed the rainforest it is super-green.