Looks like we flung a couple of ramen noodles at a map, and then tried to follow them around the northwest this summer. Allow me to help unravel the squiggles.
Why all the loopiness?
Our summer was a mashup of pre-planned events interspersed with family visits that had to be finagled where and when our family members were available, plus logical places to layover during the in-betweens, plus recalculations when not one, but two planned events were canceled with less than 2 weeks notice (one fell to COVID, one to wildfire smoke). So yeah, our brains ended up looking a little like twisted noodles too.
I’ll take you on a brief tour of each of our ten major stops. Ready?
Coeur d’Alene, ID ~ June 27 to July 18
It’s a home for us. Tim went to high school there, friends still live in the area, and his folks still visit about once a year. We were lucky to spend time with them both times we swung through this summer.
Yakima, WA ~ July 18-22
It was just a 4-night stop to have some work done on the truck, but we scored on finding a quiet state park within bicycling distance of the repair shop. We celebrated our 29th anniversary at a downtown eatery on our first night, and the only other item of note was actually rather embarrassing.
Ashford, WA ~ July 22-25
Another score: a Harvest Hosts location only 5 miles from the SW entrance to Mount Rainier National Park. With host permission we stayed 3 nights, spent accordingly in their cafe, and were thus able to put in two unrushed hiking days, with gloriously sunny weather and clear views.
Port Townsend, WA ~ July 25 to August 3
Our boy! Our big boy lives in Port Townsend and we hadn’t seen him for 19 months. Oh… ummm… actually both of our boys are big, at 6’2″, but this one’s the first born. And we hadn’t seen him for 19 months. Did I say that already?
Cashmere, WA ~ August 3-10
This is an easy one. Already wrote about it! We celebrated 6 years on the road at the Escapees Cascade Mountains Hangout, during which we went on a scavenger hunt, and went hiking, and went tubing on the river, and had potlucks, and toured a candy factory, and went to a musical, and pretty much pretended we were kids at summer camp again.
Coeur d’Alene, ID ~ August 10-24
We had two weeks to kill before our next event, and Cd’A was along the way, so it made sense to land amongst our people again.
Glacier National Park ~ August 24 to September 1
Time for our second round of “summer camp,” at the Escapees Glacier Country Hangout. The directors planned an incredibly varied slate of activities, and we saw more of the park than we would have on our own: west side, east side, trails, lakes, and guided tours. I cannot pick a favorite excursion or photo, and that’s why you get 12 in this slide show instead of only 4 or 5.
Soap Lake, WA ~ September 2-7
This stop was a last-minute addition. We learned that Tim’s other sister and her husband would be staying at Soap Lake in their new-to-them camper, and then Tim’s folks decided to join them in their new-to-them camper, so we grabbed a site at a campground right down the road, and voila! We had a plan for Labor Day Weekend.
Garibaldi & Tillamook, OR ~ September 8-19
When one door closes (like say, an event we’d registered to attend in WA that was COVID cancelled), another one opens (like say, a third Hangout with a spot available). And that’s how we ended up at the Escapees Oregon Coast Hangout: skidding in sideways at the comparative last minute. We were not at all sad about another week of fun in an area we’d not explored.
Sisters & Bend, OR ~ September 19-30
We found a great place to boondock, and set off on several adventures from there. Mornings were chilly, but the sun came out and warmed up our days, making for perfect hiking and backpacking weather. We squeezed in a pretty wide variety of activities, and have more on our list for an eventual return visit.
Where to next?
We’re now making our way to the Salt Lake City area, where Tim will savor some solo time while I fly to VA for Girl Time, and the fewer details I release about that, the better. Suffice it to say that since we canceled last year’s annual gathering (our 26th) because of the pandemic, we will likely make up for it with double the indulgences this year, and I cannot wait. I’ve even added nights on each end to spend even more time with more girlfriends from my Norfolk-based sisterhood. We were stationed there from 2004-2010, and I still miss the strong sense of community.
After I’ve recovered from the eatingdrinkinglaughingandhardlysleeping hangover, we roll to Hobbs, NM, for the 2-week Escapees Habitat for Humanity Hangout. It’ll feel good to get back to giving back, getting our hands dirty, and sharing the experience with other like-minded RVers. Plus, I’ll get a chance to pull those leftover brownies out of my freezer and upcycle them into something decadent for a potluck dessert.
From there, we’ll roll to Palo Duro Canyon State Park near Amarillo, TX, for about a week. It’s been on our list since before we even started RVing, and we’ve not managed to hit it right a single one of the umpteen times we’ve gone in and out of TX since 2015. This time, I made a reservation — at a highly uncharacteristic 6 months in advance!
After that, it’s back to homebase San Antonio for a few weeks of catching up with family & friends, routine annual medical and dental checks, and holy crap how are we this close to the holidays again already?
So ummm… happy new year? I’m sure I’ll post at least one fresh blog between now and then, and as ever, you can follow us on Facebook, Instagram and/or Twitter for more frequent updates as we roll along.
We started full-timing in August of 2015, but I didn’t think to do an annual review until the end of 2016, and it was just a listing on Facebook of places we’d visited. After that, I started using a quarterly format.
- 2Q 2021
- 1Q 2021
- 4Q 2020
- 3Q 2020
- 2Q 2020
- 1Q 2020
- 4Q 2019
- 3Q 2019
- 2Q 2019
- 1Q 2019
- 4Q 2018
- 3Q 2018
- 2Q 2018
- 1Q 2018
- 4Q 2017 (doubles as 3rd installment of our Amazon Camperforce write-up)
- 3Q 2017
- 2Q 2017
- 1Q 2017