Moving another 170 miles east and a little north this time we stopped in Spokane, WA. We parked at Trailer Inns of Spokane.
From Portland we followed the Columbia River east to the town of Umatilla, OR. Our near term objective is to get to Glacier National Park in Montana and this moved us 200 miles in that direction. If you haven’t been into the eastern part of Oregon and Washington, it is completely different than the green, wet and mountainous western portion. This part reminds me very much of California’s central valley, very dry with some gently rolling hills and lots of agriculture.
Eatonville is a bit southeast of Seattle in the vicinity of Mt. Rainier National Park which was the major purpose for our visit. We parked at Rainbow RV Resort which is located on picturesque Lake Tanwax. On a clear day, which we were fortunate to experience, you can see the peak of Mt. Rainier from the RV park.
At 14,410 feet, Mt. Rainier is the tallest volcano in the Cascade Mountain Range and the most glaciated peak in the continental United States with 26 named glaciers. We entered the park at the Nisqually entrance which is in the southwest corner of the park. Near the Longmire area we stopped for a hike that took us up to a spot with a nice view of Mt. Rainier. We continued on the main road stopping to check out waterfalls and other viewpoints. We went as far as the Paradise area which is the most popular spot in the park. It takes you to about 5,400 feet in elevation. The National Park Service says that “Paradise is the snowiest place on Earth where snowfall is measured regularly.” It has an average of 671 inches of snowfall per year with 1,122 inches recorded during the winter of 1971/72. Mt. Rainier NP is a little off the beaten path but well worth a more extensive visit.
Next stop: Portland, OR
We stopped in Arlington in order to be in position to get some work completed on the motorhome. It’s a long story that I will try to summarize.
Back in mid-April, when we pulled into Myers Flat, CA, after shutting off the engine I heard a hissing sound coming from the engine compartment. My impression was that it was an air conditioner hose but wasn’t sure. There was a mechanic just outside the entrance to the RV park and he checked it out and concurred that the A/C hose had developed a leak. He attempted to order a replacement from a local Ford dealership but when I went to pick it up to was not the correct hose.
We parked here at the Swinomish Lodge and Casino RV park which is located a bit east of Anacortes and Whidbey Island. During our car road trip in 2014 we spent a few days in nearby Oak Harbor.
We took a day trip from here, heading east to North Cascades National Park. This park contains some of America’s most beautiful mountain scenery. The mountains are not the tallest but with jagged peaks, cascading waterfalls, glaciers and sheer-walled cliffs there is ample dramatic beauty. We hiked the Thunder Knob Trail which afforded awesome views of Diablo Lake and the peaks beyond.
On another day we drove out to Whidbey Island and re-visited Oak Harbor and Coupeville. We had to treat ourselves to the steamed mussels at Toby’s Tavern in Coupeville. These are Penn Cove mussels which are grown right here in Coupeville.
Next stop: Hope, British Columbia