We are sitting outside Peg under her R-dome tent awning with the girls. The sun is setting as we gaze over the clear blue waters of the Hood Canal. The setting is perfect, even romantic, as we discuss how lucky we are to be here. We are at a small RV resort in a little hamlet town called Potlatch, which is situated West of Seattle along the Hood Canal, an inlet that runs along the Olympic Peninsula. Renee targeted a stop at Potlatch after doing research on Washington and Oregon and tonight all the research certainly paid off. But we have gotten a little ahead of ourselves, its been 10 days since we left Montana, the subject of our last post.
We reluctantly left Glacier National Park in Montana after six nights, probably our favorite stop to date. That said we were excited to head to Washington, a state that has it all – mountains, ocean, big cities, small towns, national parks, cool summer days…etc. The drive was going to be long; our longest yet, so we needed to break it up over two days. There are not a lot of places to stop along Northern Washington; most of it is pretty remote and rugged. Renee found an RV park about 7 hours away, there was very little to choose from. Well, we ended up at Kings Court RV Park, definitley the worst park we have stayed at to date; good thing it was just for the night – we did not even unhitch Peg. However, the RV park was located a mile from the Grand Coulee Dam situated on the great Columbia River. We were not that familiar with the dam. The dam had a visitors center and put on a light show each night. The RV Park ran a trolley to the dam each evening, so we went – why not? The map below shows where Grand Coulee is located.
It was an experience; the Grand Coulee dam was built in the 1940’s and is still the largest hydroelectricity-producing dam in the US and one of the biggest in the world. It was interesting learning about the history of the dam and what it meant to the US as the country was exiting the Great Depression and heading into WWII. It was also interesting to learn about how the dam provided irrigation for the surrounding area but also negatively impacted the Native American people of the area. There are so many places to see in this country, each with a unique and interesting history.
The next day we decided to drive through North Cascades National Park on our way to the Northwest coast of Washington. The map below shows where the Park is located.
North Cascades National Park
How many of you have ever heard of this National Park, be honest! We were unfamiliar with this park so we did a little research. The park is not as heavily visited as some of the others but wow, what a drive. We climbed high up into the mountains where the scenery was spectacular. We only spent a few hours in the park but it really made the long drive worth it. Check out the pics and video we took.
We finally made it, we were ready to stop and setup camp for a week. However as it turned out the reservation we made at Oceanside RV Park got screwed up and so we where homeless. Luckily, Renee had called when we were close to let them know we were on our way, so when they said sorry we have no spot for you we started looking for a place. We called several campgrounds and RV parks but they were all full. Finally we were able to get a spot in Cedars RV Park located in Ferndale. We ended up staying there for two nights because they took Passport America (half price) and we needed to take care of some maintenance - you know laundry, cleaning Peg and Al, haircuts, grocery shopping…etc.
The weather this time of year in Washington along the coast is ideal. Typically gets into the 70’s during the day and high 50’s at night. The sun shines all day and you want to be outdoors, everyone wants to be outdoors! All of the state parks were booked solid, but fate was on our side again, a spot opened up at Birch Bay State Park, situated on Birch Bay. We dry camped for three nights and loved it. What a great little campground - no frills, all natural beauty! We relaxed and enjoyed the outdoors.
During out stay at Birch Bay we walked past Oceanside RV Resort, this was the place that got our reservations screwed up, boy were we happy they did – the park did not look like our kind of place.
We also drove to Vancouver, Canada one day. It’s funny, after weeks in small towns, camping in scenic places we had a hard time handling the big, busy city of Vancouver. We did enjoy the walk along the water in Stanely Park, oh and Renee loved her pork sandwich she had for lunch. She loves good food!!! The cafe uses local/organic ingredients. Everything on her sandwich was homemade; the brioche bun, the vinegar/mustard seed based bbq sauce, the apple coleslaw and the pork. You could tell she was in heaven while she was eating it. It was nice to see Vancouver but we were ready to high tail it back to Birch Bay state park for another amazing sunset!
We did not have any reservations for the weekend, we wanted to extend our stay in Birch Bay but nothing was available. Renee was working hard calling virtually every State Park and RV Park in the area, no luck. On a whim she called Potlatch Resort (we had reservations for Sunday night already) to see if they had any last minute cancellations. No luck at Potlatch but they had a sister campground that had one opening. Skokomish Park on Lake Cushman was formally owned by the State but had been sold to the local Native American Tribe (who also owned Potlatch). So it worked out, fate was on our side again. We really enjoyed the short stay on Lake Cushman. The map below shows where Lake Cushman is located.
Skokomish Park on Lake Cushman
So that brings us back to where we started, sitting outside Peg along the Hood Canal at Waterfront at Potlatch Resort. We do not stay at RV resorts too often but do from time-to-time. It was a welcome and relaxing visit. One night we even watched an old movie the resort had – The Great Outdoors starring John Candy!! If you find yourself in the area and are feeling romantic, make a stop. The resort also has cabins and a little hotel.
Potlatch and Hoodsport
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