Slept in till 7:30. Felt great. It was still drizzling outside. Cold winds blew.
Another day in a motel sounded peaceful, but the irrational, restless impulse to keep going came upon me. Perhaps I should have fought it. Perhaps I should have stayed another day in Astoria, and caught up on typing, and developed Yosemite photos in Light Room, and gone to the Columbia Maritime Museum, which I would have loved, and…
Nope. Just head to Washington. Give yourself time down the way in a better place.
Ok. After stopping at Natural Grocers for some supplies, I crossed the 4,1-mile long Astoria-Megler bridge that spans the Columbia, and connects Oregon to Washington, and found myself in another new state, the Evergreen State.
The rain started again. It rained almost the entire time up US 101. This was getting old.
This was causing me stress. I don’t want to stay in motels. Sure, I can enjoy them, but, truly, I prefer camping. Outside’s where it’s at. And, they cost more money, and spending $5.30 in Washington, as in Oregon, for gas, even with a Yaris, gets old.
Oh to have a van and double or triple my gas costs!
But even the rain would have been more manageable with my pop-up tent-cot. I love that thing! But I didn’t bring it ‘cuz I though my quick-set-up hiking tent would be just as convenient, and it is, when it’s dry. But to lay that thing down in muddy ground, with the potential for more rain, well, I hate mud. It seems no other element in nature is more demoralizing when you have to spend hours, or days, in it.
With my tent-cot, I’d be above the wet ground, and I could put another tarp over the tarp it for 100% dryness. I would have camped at Quinalt Lake on the southwest part of Olympic National Park, even in the mist. That place looked gorgeous. I could have paid $250 for a room there, but that’s not how I want to play this travel game. I want to make budget.
This is where my morale suffered. This is where I thought about going home. I hate camping in cold, wet mud and raid. It’s awful. But, I knew the rain was forecasted to end by Monday, and I could find a cheaper motel in Forks if necessary, and turning around just wasn’t an option at this point considering how far I’d come. For years I’ve wondered what the northern Olympic Peninsula is like, and come hell or high water, I was going to see it.
I temporarily got signal somewhere north of Quinalt, and saw $30 on Google Maps after sweeping for hotels near Forks, Washington. I called the Three Rivers resort. That $30 was a campground. Yet, right during that call the sun broke through the clouds, and for a second Washington lit up a magnificent fluorescent green as it’s famous for doing in July and August, and my spirits lifted. The woman on the phone was friendly, and said the rain is likely gone for a couple of days, and that the campground is near some outstanding beaches, which are also part of Olympic national park. Furthermore, at a campground like this I’d not have to worry about thieving.
“Screw it. I’ll take a spot for at least three nights. Can I add a fourth if I wish later on?”
Perfect. I could SLOW DOWN. I could TAKE MY TIME. Good gosh, why is this so hard for me? Why must Clark Griswald scream in my ears? Well, that’s traveling. I’m not the only one who feels this compulsion. I’m not the only one who frets for all the variables road trips can render. Again, traveling is an art.
When I got to Three Rivers, it looked perfect. I bought my three nights, and a bunch of firewood, still having three Duraflame logs from my night at Beachside state park in Oregon.
Got to my site. A man was putting in a table. We talked. He couldn’t help himself, and broached the subject of politics in Washington. Of course he was a conservative who’s bewildered by the insanity coming out of Seattle. Of course he’s shocked and hurt by how radically America has changed in the past two years. I think there are millions shocked and hurt, yet, don’t have the words, or the spine, to call out the Left’s treachery bluntly, as it must be.
We got along great.
I then set up my hiking tent, and tied a rope over it between two trees, to drape a tarp over that rope, so as to make my tent 95% impervious to rain. Then, made fire. Ate an avocado, sauerkraut, almond butter and… I don’t bloody remember.
Typed. Played Woodoku, which is more addicting than crack. Read.
Ohh… it would be nice to drink whiskey… but I don’t want to go back to that. I don’t.
Lights out at 10.