May 30, 2010

Wild Salmon and Domesticated Goats - Victoria BC

After the rainy weather in the Olympics, and basically since leaving San Francisco a few weeks prior, Victoria offered a welcome respite. Despite having just left Portland a few days earlier, it was still nice to be in a city again. We didn't completely escape the rain, but intermittent periods of sunshine allowed to enjoy wandering the city. The Children's Farm kept us busy for a couple hours, staring down peacocks and chasing the baby goats.  We also made it down to the waterfront to Red Fish Blue Fish, for a healthy portion  fish and chips and tacones, made with fresh wild salmon.

May 28, 2010

The Rainy Pacific Northwest - Olympic National Park

The rain continued to fall as we left Portland. Not suprising perhaps since we were headed toward the rain forests of Olympic National Park. Up until we reached Portland, we had followed the coast s much as possible and had a sense of where we were headed. Leaving Portland though set us off on a new adventure.  All we knew was that we were still headed north toward Victoria British Columbia, but how we get there was a matter of making decisions underway. Olympic National Park seemed like a worthy destination so we braved the rain and made our way out toward the Pacific coast once again.

Portland, Oregon - Urban adventures

After a couple weeks along the wild Pacific coast, it was a little strange to be headed inland. At the same time it was great to break the routine of camping and getting wet and dirty. For a couple days we traded in the spectacular coastal scenery for more urban adventures.

Small children and big cities. Having done a little background reading on Portland, we had a few things we wanted to see and experience, but how to fit in meals and naps remain a challenge. To keep it simple, we simply kept our expectations reasonable, and fit in what we were able to fit in. It's often hard to decide what few things to prioritize when there is seemingly so many interesting things to see and do in Portland, but we decided to spend one day roaming the cities famous gardens, and another wandering through the downtown shops and streets.

May 25, 2010

Beaches and brews on the Oregon coast.

Apart from a couple signs along the highway, there was little to indicate our crossing from California into Oregon. The beautiful and dramatic coastline continued uninterrupted with cliffs and sea stacks jutting into and out of the turbulent sea. Eventually though, the ragged landscape gave way to more gentle terrain with sand dunes, and endless sandy beaches. However, something was different about Oregon, although it's something difficult to describe it's something positive. Perhaps it has something to do with fewer people and fewer tourists and an equally inspiring coastline. Oregon just feels a little more relaxed, like they know something that the rest of us don't. Whatever it is we made our way north, dodging rain showers and enjoying the spectacular views of the coast.

May 20, 2010

More Redwoods, and Rain

The Avenue of the Giants led us toward the last few little cities in Northern California, Humboldt, and the quaint college town of Arcata, before leading us into even more redwoods and the largest concentration of old growth coastal redwoods in Redwood National Park. For the most part our journey so far has seen mostly  sunny skies with some coastal fog, but as we get further north the weather has turned, predictably, and become more unsettled. The challenges of sitting together in a car, and sleeping together either in our ecamper or tent have required compromise for each of us.

May 18, 2010

Redwoods and Rhododendrons

Westport Union Landing, California. A week has passed since we began our journey. Progress has been slow, intentionally. After traveling the Pacific Coast Highway from San Francisco, it was somewhat disappointing to leave the coast (if only for a little while) and move onto somewhat better and wider roads. However, the detours are still ever present and we take every chance we can to get off the main highway to experience the scenery at a slower pace.

May 12, 2010

The Pacific Coast Highway - headed north

Ocean Cove, California. The waves crash against the rocky shore lulling us to sleep, a fitting end to a day driving and exploring along the Pacific Coast Highway. Without any place to be or time to be there, our pace and journey are being influenced by the sights and sounds as we pass by. The beauty of where land meets ocean, waves meet sand, rocky bluffs, and the coastal mountains are the what have inspired this journey northward along the coast. Wildflowers abound, "Happy Cows" and other seemingly content animals graze in the lush meadows and pastures, and small coastal villages beckon for a stop, if only for a cup of caffe latte and short stroll among art galleries and local crafts and locally grown foods.

May 5, 2010

Monterey and the Bay Aquarium

Getting close to nature isn't always as easy as taking a hike in the woods or a stroll along the beach. Sometimes the only way to get close to exotic wildlife is through a glass window. For children though, the experience can be equally fascinating and wild. Visiting Monterey gave us the chance to do both. After leaving Lake Tahoe with our fully packed ECamper, we met up with family for a weekend on the rocky Monterey Peninsula, for a visit to the Monterey Bay Aquarium and to hang out on the sandy beaches and explore tide pools.