After spending a week in Seattle, we made our way south, down the Oregon Coast for a day then we headed inland to visit Crater Lake National Park, one of my lifelong goals. We stopped at Mount St Helens on the day we left Seattle, since it was on our way south.
We decided to swing through Portland to see what it was like. While there we stopped at Coava Coffee Roasters to get some coffee and a stainless steel filter for our Chemex Coffee Carafe which we use while traveling. We parked downtown and walked around the weekend market for a while and then set off toward the coast.
That evening we planned on camping at a state park, but it was full. We hit the road again and ended up camping at a small marina on the coast of Oregon. It was quite wonderful to watch the sun set over the ocean while we enjoyed our dinner. Sometimes things that seem like inconveniences turn out to be wonderful blessings in the end. This seems especially true if you keep an open mind while traveling.
The next morning we were up with the sun and headed off down the coast stopping occasionally to take short hikes to an ocean overlook or something interesting.
After following the coast for many miles we headed inland and drove along picturesque country roads flanked by beautiful sheep farms. Our camper is actually insulated with wool from a sheep farm in Oregon, so we wondered if any of these sheep had provided our camper with warm VOC free all natural insulation. This is why we try those chose small roads instead of highways when we travel. The extra time it takes to travel back roads is rewarded with beauty the entire way. I’ll gladly trade a beautiful view for the drive for an extra hour or two in the car!
Originally we had planned on getting to Crater Lake that evening, but with the back roads drive we didn’t make it. Once again we were rewarded by not sticking to our plans too closely. Bogus Creek Campground in the Umpqua National Forest was really beautiful and serene. It was such a lovely place we might head back someday to spend some time hiking in the area.
The next morning we packed up and made our way through the National Forest stopping at many of the waterfalls along the way. We had no idea these were even here, until the campground host gave us some brochures and told us about them. If we hadn’t stopped at that campground we would have driven by all of them without even knowing. There are 24 different waterfalls in this area, we were able to stop and see about 8 of them.
In the afternoon, we continued on towards our goal of seeing Crater Lake, stopping at the Broken Arrow Campground at Diamond Lake to drop off the camper. We continued down the road to the northern entrance to Crater Lake National Park. Crater Lake has always been on my “must do” list since I was young. I tried to talk my parents into making the trip when we were in California once, but it was too far. I was super excited to finally see it — I was not disappointed.
We spent the rest of the afternoon and evening driving around the rim road, stopping at all the lookouts. At one stop there was a friendly little ground squirrel, obviously other guests were not obeying the “Do Not Feed Wildlife” signs because it came right up to my hand as I was sitting on the wall. We hiked down to the boat landing at the lake and were surprised to see people swimming. Had we known, we would have worn our suits and taken a dip. But hiking the 1.5 miles back out in wet clothes was not appealing so we dipped our feet in and were content with that.
The next morning we got up early to a few ominous clouds and a few rain drops. We didn’t let that stop us from hiking the 2.5 miles to the top of Mt Scott, which is the highest point in Crater Lake Park. It was worth the trip, and by the time we got to the top the clouds were gone and it was a beautiful day!
Luckily we had packed ourselves some delicious sandwiches for lunch, which we enjoyed while taking in the fantastic view of Crater Lake. (more on our delicious sandwich fixing found at a little local butcher shop in Seattle later)
If you look closely you can see a tiny me hiking along the trail at the rim of Mt Scott in the image below. If you ever head to Crater Lake I’d highly recommend this hike, it’s well worth it for the view. The wildflowers were also quite lovely on the hike up, we wished we had taken a flower identification book with us. At least I have photos so I can find the names some day soon.
That afternoon we packed up the car and headed off through Oregon on our way to Grand Teton National Park. Check back tomorrow for that leg of our journey. Check my Flickr Photostream for more photos of each part of the trip, I’ll be uploading them as I have time.
Do you have any places that you’ve always wanted to visit? Have you been able to check any off of your list?
Other posts from this trip:
Tiny Trailer Travels Part I
Tiny Trailer Travels Part II
Tiny Trailer Travels Part III
Tiny Trailer Travels Part IV
Tiny Trailer Travels Part V
Tiny Trailer Travels Part VI