Thursday, September 19, 2013


We took a day to hook-up, re-charge the electronics, and park in the sunshine at Miller Sylvania State Park, not far from where we've been camping. Here's the view from our campsite and some local f&f (flora & fauna):
The park is quite nice, with many short loop hikes and a great lake for boating and swimming (we didn't do either, but still...), and we hiked out to the lake at sunset and watched the fish jump and the reflections on Deep Lake:
Back to Margaret McKenny for the night (it's free!), all showered and all electronics back to 100%!


We've been staying at Margaret McKenny campground in the woods. There are mushrooms here, too!
And our campsite is huge and beautiful:
Yesterday, we went to the Mima Mounds Natural Area Preserve. Mima Mounds are these mysterious (theories abound) geological mounds that extend for several hundred acres, that no one quite knows how they formed. It seems the current idea is that they were formed by glacial ice, melting in waves, but the jury is still out! We also encountered some flora and fauna along the two mile trail through the mounds:

The gorgeous Washington sky above the mounds
Bells of Scotland flower with dewdrops
Praying Mantis

Sunday, September 15, 2013


It's a beautiful rainy morning in Littlerock, Washington, and we're drinking coffee and eating oatmeal. We'll likely spend the day inside the Chinook - it's perfect weather for knitting!

Thursday, September 12, 2013


We left Cape Perpetua yesterday; we saw a beautiful sunset and simultaneous moonrise from the Visitor's Center on our last evening:

We stayed last night at the campground at Nehalem State Park. It's right on a sandy beach, but was more of a "re-stop" for us: re-fill, re-charge, re-organize, etc. and then we drove up the coast (stopping at the Tillamook Cheese factory for a bit of ice cream and some delicious cheese), and then along the Columbia River along the top of Oregon's border. We crossed over the river into Washington and are now staying at Margaret McKenny Campground near Littlerock, Washington. We pulled in rather late this evening, but are settling in just fine now!

Tuesday, September 10, 2013


We took a 6.5 mile hike along part of the Oregon Coast Trail, then through an old growth forest, and then back home. It was a fairly demanding hike, but well worth it! I'm not generally a fan of fungus, but it would take a very incurious individual indeed to not wonder at the huge array of colors, shapes, and textures of the mushrooms we saw today. A smattering of them follows:

Oh, there were also some other things on the hike, too, like butterflies, coastline, etc., but mostly mushrooms.

We're heading out tomorrow for points North (hopefully towards Cheese.).


We're still at Cape Perpetua, and today we only had time to fit in a short hike from our campsite to the Giant Sitka Spruce Tree.  The trail was gorgeous, and the Giant Tree (500 years old, 225 ft. tall, 15 ft. across, with a tunnel of roots beneath) was striking! The photos don't do it justice, but the top one is from the outside of the tree, and the bottom is a view from inside the root tunnel:

Saturday, September 7, 2013

A beautiful day on the Oregon coast - sunshine mixed with some lovely breezes that whisper of Autumn with little leafstorms of the first drying leaves. We did some little hikes down to the Pacific (we missed the best times for the tidepools, so we'll do that another day) and then hiked 1.1 miles almost straight up, to the highest point for viewing the coastline in Oregon. You can see (on a clear day, which is what today most graciously was!) 37 miles of coastline. The elevation change is about 700 feet, so the hike was steep.
At the top (which you can also reach by driving up a road for 2 miles (right off Hwy 101), there is a nice wheelchair accessible trail that has great views, and leads to a CCC (We continue to be amazed and heartened by the outstanding effort the CCC workers - all made possible by government intervention/instigation - put in to create awesome trails and structures from which we can all benefit today, 80 years hence!). Top to bottom: CCC shelter, ocean view from trail before CCC shelter, view from inside CCC shelter looking southward along the coast.

Friday, September 6, 2013


We finally made it to the Oregon coast! After a couple of days at Collier State Park, and an overnight recharging at Valley of the Rogue State Park, we headed to the coast, had a night at William Tugman State Park at Eel Lake and are now heading north up Oregon's coastline. We passed through Florence (looks like a wonderful place, but didn't stop - sorry, Mom!) until we hit Cape Perpetua. We're going to spend a few days here; here's the view out the back of the Chinook (we're right on a lovely creek that you can't quite see in the photo:

This is our Chinook (and our campsite) viewed from the trail that runs along the campground to the Cape Perpetua Visitor's and Interpretive Center (about half a mile away):
And when we reached the Visitor's Center, here is the Pacific:
On the trail back to the campsite, we came across this little albino fellow, also both making his way home and carrying his home, just as we are!:

There are 26 miles of hiking trails here, so we may just stay more than a few days! Gotta type fast, though, as we have no hook-ups here, and must conserve the laptop batteries!

Monday, September 2, 2013

We just passed four beautiful days west of the Cascades, near Crescent Lake, Oregon. We stayed at Gold Lake Campground (site #10 - it's awesome!) and enjoyed some nice hikes and very relaxing times lake-side. No internet or phone access, just quiet times and leisurely strolls. I was able to get a little knitting done, and we had campfires every night with firewood which we collected on our hikes. Day One was a bit thunder-stormy, but we saw a heron land on a log across the inlet in the evening mist, and enjoyed the chipmunks scurrying across our campsite. The top photo is the view from our private little stretch of site #10 beach, and the bottom view is what we saw when we stepped out of the Chinook.

Day 2 was a little cloudy. We enjoyed a nice hike that sort of blossomed into a longer-than-we-planned-hike due to misreading a trail sign. We ended up doing about 7 miles.  Check out the reflection of the clouds - perfect!
Our son's cat, Scout, is doing well with our new lifestyle; he sleeps a lot, has found many hidey-holes in the Chinook, and is learning to go out on a leash (!!!) If you know Scout, you know how anathema this is to his natural state!

We left this morning, however, as we were out of water, tanks full, rather grimy around the edges, and needing to charge up the electronics! My last photos of Gold Lake are from a hike (about a mile and a half) that took us to Upper Marilyn Lake, a lovely, easy, beautiful stroll through dewy woodland, and then of the evening before we left:

 Marilyn Lake

We're now at Collier State Park, a larger, less private, less picturesque campground, but it has hot showers, flush toilets, soap, water, electricity, and an internet connection!