Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Olympic Mountains, Day 2- Back on the trails!

...Continued from last week's "Olympic Mountains, Day 1: Lena's First Camping Trip!" (Link)

Lena’s first ever night of camping outdoors had gone smoother than expected.  It was only car camping, but we had to start somewhere.  It was all about getting Lena to experience the wonders of God's creation!

The Big Creek Campground in the Olympic National Forest was nearly empty, with only a few fellow campers using it as a base camp to climb Mount Washington.  I was hoping to also make an ascent by traversing across from Mt. Ellinor, but Kathy had reservations about my aspirations to climb.

I reluctantly agreed not to climb that day, but not without a consolation prize--  More time with Kathy and Lena!

This is the adorable sight that I woke up to in my tent:

Lena climbs back inside the tent to wake up Daddy and wish him a good morning!

Here are some shots of our morning family time at the camp site:

Warming up by the morning campfire

Lena helps Daddy clean up and take down the tent

"Oooh," Lena says!  Omelets and oatmeal for breakfast!

Lena hikes her first mini trail before we even leave the campground!

After breaking camp, we hit the road and headed for the next trailhead.  We pulled over occasionally to enjoy the views of Mt. Ellinor, Mount Washington, and Lake Cushman.

The trail that our outdated hiking/camping book referred to as the “Mount Washington trail” did not exist.  Time to spring for a new book?  Fortunately, there were plenty of other trails in the area to explore.

A closed off forest road led us to the Jefferson Pass Trail.  The mountain views along the hike were gorgeous!

After we hiked in to the Jefferson Pass trailhead, Kathy waited patiently for us as Lena and I continued uphill.

Nap time? A tuckered out Lena dozes off while Daddy carries her through the splendor of the Jefferson Pass Trail.

Kathy indulged me yet again as I split off to sprint a portion of the Mount Ellinor trail.

My plans to climb Mount Washington that day may have been shot down, but at least I got one last taste before leaving the trails!


On the drive back towards Oregon, we ran into a band of ragtag musicians at a Tumwater gas station.  Strangers to each other, they had broken off from their caravan to play tunes for gas money.  Collectively, their bands were slated to play at a jug music festival in Portland that night.  What great timing for all of us!

This blog never strays beyond PG-rated territory, so I omitted my video clip of their impromptu roadside jam session.  They sounded phenomenal together, but some of their improv boasted language salty enough to make Jay-Z blush!

At Brewer's City Pizza, we stuffed our tummies and talked local high school sports with our young waitress.  From there, we headed home.

Coming next week on Garth's Blog...

Lena's first visit to Enchanted Forest!

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