Washington

We took the 101 up thinking the coast would continue the way it did through Oregon.  It was quite a different experience.  We saw more active logging on the 101 through Washington than we saw in Oregon.  We boogied up the coast after we went through Aberdeen, a rather run down old logging town that when we looked it up, saw that it was tagged “The Hellhole of the Pacific”.  We later heard this was were Kirk Cobain was from.  Nonetheless we were hungry and definitely did not stop here for a bite to eat – instead stuck to beef jerky and popcorn.  We moved on up to the beginning of the Olympic Forest, and stayed at a nice campground on Lake Quinnalt.  This spot was beautiful!  A lot of Indian tribe history that was present in the area, amazing tribal art and legends.

From here we headed up to Port Townsend.  We stayed at a campground on the water here that was similar to an old fort, like the one at the base of the Golden Gate Bridge.  It was quite similar to that with restaurants, bars, spas and so on.  We only camped here a night because there was a big festival coming into town – the rhododendron festival (a festival celebrating the pink flowers we have seen everywhere since Arcata.  Port Townsend was cute.  We had some good mussels and clams here, as well a some Texas style BBQ, that was set up for the festival.  We headed on over to Seattle, and since the drive was long, we stayed just out of Seattle at a Cabelas, which you can camp at for free.  However, the store is like Disneyland for outdoors folks, so we spent some money here once they opened, maybe not so free anymore.

We had lots of friends to see in Seattle, and it was a blast.  We went sailing with Tom & Erin, and a big crew of their friends, then a fabulous BBQ with them all.  We got to see my awesome cousin Mary, and go the the farmers market with her.  As well, we saw Maile and Mark for a yummy salmon dinner at their house.  It was recommended that we didn’t stay in Seattle at a campground since they have a homeless problem currently, so we stayed outside at Lake Sammamish.  This was a nice spot on the lake, we weren’t there too much however since we were with friends.  I also took my first Banjo lesson!  So fun!!!  And we enjoyed a great dinner out at a place called, “How to Cook a Wolf.”  Love this name, and the food + service was fabulous!

We headed up north from Seattle to a place called Deception Pass at the top of Whitbey Island.  The first night there we had a wind storm, like 50 mile an hour winds.  We walked to the water, and the waves were huge, and when we walked back tree branches had fallen all over, then we heard a big tree go down.  It wasn’t too close to us but it was loud.  Nonetheless, I was a little worried, but it all blew over and was fine.  Exploring Whitbey was fun.  Really like this island.  Coupeville and Langley were super cute towns, and the farms all around were beautiful!

Next we grabbed the boat over to Orcas Island for Memorial Day.  We decided to stay a while here so we could adventure to the islands surrounding as well.  We really like Orcas – super cute with beautiful farms.  We stayed at West Beach Resort, an incredible spot with cabins, camping and RV spots.  We would come back here year after year, like our favorite vacation spot in the Sierra’s.  We met some really great people here!  Some fun families from towns nearby, a fun couple from Vancouver (not Canada – Washington), a couple guys biking the island and a dudes crew celebrating a birthday.  The crew here was also super friendly and we have chatted with everyone lots.  Sunsets here are incredible with the long pier into the water, a large fire pit were everyone roasts their marshmallows, people playing guitars, and cotton wood trees that “snow” as the sunsets making it feel super magical.

We went over to San Juan, another beautiful island.  We decided for living we didn’t like it as much as Orcas though.  The two towns on San Juan felt like they were meant more for the tourists more than the locals, although we only had a few hours here on a busy holiday weekend, and we had to catch the last boat out earlier than we thought.  The farms on San Juan were very beautiful!  A lot of people recommended we check out Bellingham.  We didn’t have a chance this time, but will definitely next time.  I really like the people in Washington.  People are super friendly, outdoorsy, and adventure going kinds of people.

On Orcas there was an awesome brewery called Island Hoppin, cutest little brewery ever.  It is near a small airport.  One day we were on the beach by the airport and we were watching a couple small planes land.  One guy forgot to put his wheels down, very loud metal scratching on pavement, looked like he survived, plane is likely struggling, bummer!

We are now taking a boat on over to Vancouver Island in Canada.  They made us back onto the ferry.  At first I thought they were joking with us, but nope, we had to back on – all 45 feet of us.  Longest back up so far, and Brian nailed it!  We laughed a lot after, must have been fun for the boat crew to watch us.

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