Finally, I am ready to write the post about the final stop on our 9+ month van-traveling adventure. It is very, very late in coming, but as I mentioned before, it is hard to recap those final few stops. But today (December 23rd), we are once again in the van, parked in a National Forest, preparing for a hike tomorrow. Just like the old days. Being in the van again inspires me to write, and I have some extra down time due to tonight being almost the longest night of the year. So tonight, I finally sum up the last stop on the full-time adventure.
My hometown of Puyallup, WA is easily a days’ drive from Portland, but 150 miles is too far for these road travelers to cover in a day. Rather than drive straight onto my mom’s house from our stay in Portland, we made one final stop at Ike Kinswa State Park, a forested campground on the shores of Mayfield Lake, about 60 miles southwest of Mt. Rainier.
Each of the two nights we camped here we walked down to the lake shore to watch the sunsets, which were glorious. The birds of prey also entertained us by scooping up fish from the lake and carrying them away in their talons like missiles.
Across the highway from the campground is a day use area with part of the lake roped off for swimming. When we first biked over to check it out we spotted a pair of bald eagles! It was quite warm and sunny for May in the northwest, so I attempted to go for a swim, but alas, I am a wuss and couldn’t bring myself to get in past my bellybutton.
In addition to fish jumping in the lake and birds of prey who catch them, the park is also inhabited by many bunnies, and we were there just in time to see tiny ones. These baby bunnies had yet to learn to be afraid of people, so they let me get a longer and closer look than any of the fully grown ones.
Thus ends this book, where the John and Heidi characters live and travel full time in a van. But the adventures are not over. Stay tuned for the sequels.
May 21-22, 2014