Thanks to Jim, Leah, Jess and the mechanics at Jim’s Automotive, Katrina is sporting a new driveshaft and some sensors. It’s Tuesday, June 13th and time to hit the road!
Within an hour, the bins are arranged in the van and the gas tank is full. Even though I am running a few days behind Kate, I have decided to travel two-lane highways as often as possible. Heading north through Rifle, then on to the Flaming Gorge, was beautiful with little traffic. The first night I stopped at a cool little campsite by Green’s Lake near Dutch John.
This is the view out my back door – not bad for the first night out.
I didn’t take time to explore the Flaming Gorge on my way out, but made a mental note to come back again. It is spectacular!
Early the next day I pointed Katrina’s nose north toward Jackson, WY then west to Idaho Falls. This stretch of Hwy 20 seemed the longest (read: most boring) but I finally made it to Craters of the Moon around 5:00 pm. The Craters are an ancient, massive lava flow spreading out for miles. I took the half-hour driving tour, marveled at rugged hills dotted with colorful spring blossoms (looks like mounds of rich chocolate ice cream covered with sprinkles), stamped my National Parks passport, and headed toward Boise.
Sometimes when you are traveling and tired, you don’t always make the best decisions. I made it to I-84 by 8:00 pm and noticed a sign for Hwy 20 veering off to the right through Boise. By the time I discovered that I should have stayed on the interstate, I was at the western edge of Boise and knee-deep in an all-night construction zone. About an hour and a half later the traffic started moving again. Tired and hungry, I found a quiet parking lot in a nice subdivision and decided to spend the night. I fell into my snug little bed and didn’t hear a thing all night (yes, I LOVE my van!).
Friday morning I was up at 5:00 am and easily made my way out of the construction mess and rambled along Hwy 20 toward the coast. It was another long, windy, rainy day, but by 5:00pm ocean time, I pulled into Beverly Beach State Park.
This is home for the next three nights. It was really quiet until the weekend…
It has been cool (in the 60’s), damp and a little windy here along the Oregon coast. Kate, Winnie and I have been out almost everyday, sometimes on the beach, sometimes in the woods. Below are a few of the glorious places we’ve seen so far:
The lighthouse on Yaquina Head south of our campsite.
Kate (in the pink) is checking out the nearby tidal pools. Through the reflection of the water you can see the starfish in the center with other creatures living nearby.
The weather started to clear on Saturday so we decided to hike into the Cape Perpetua forest. We wound our way up a steep trail for 2.5 miles only to discover that we had four more miles to go to get back to the Visitor Center. Since neither one of us had our maps, we weren’t sure if we wanted to backtrack or take the long route back. Lucky for us, Karen, a fellow hiker, came along and assured us that the four mile trip was not only easier, but more scenic, too. She didn’t fail us, the trail followed Gwyn Creek, was gradual and full of wildflowers. Soon we were back at the car and ready for dinner.
Speaking of food, we have had some great seafood lunches and dinners. Fish and chips, salmon, crab cakes, tuna mignon, shrimp salads and cocktail. And, speaking of cocktails, we’ve sampled several of the local brews, too. All very good! In fact, I think I’ll have lunch at Pelican Brewery today.
Next up: Follow me as Kate, Winnie and I head up north toward Astoria.
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