Bow, WA – north of Seattle

Monday, July 6 – we left our campsite just after 8am, Linda drove to the dump station and we headed out; Acey’s mileage 64,474.4; Thor 68,179 leaving Newport, WA. Linda drove on the road (finally!) until just before we got on the interstate; about 40 miles. Just as she felt like she was kind of getting the hang of it, Jim was getting nervous with her driving in the city, so he took the wheel.

As we left the Spokane area, the landscape looked a lot like Wyoming – somewhat hilly and almost desert-like with not many trees, but soon we had mountains on the horizon. A gorgeous day for driving! We always fix lunch along the way as it saves time and money – and unless we were to eat at aRest Area or Truck Stop, its generally not going to be easy to park our big rig!

crossing the Columbia river

We arrived at the Thousand Trails Mount Vernon RV Campground about 5:30 – Aceys mileage on arrival 6,857.8 – a long day of driving through beautiful countryside.

Tuesday we explored around the campground; there is a hiking trail around the back part of the campground, so we checked it out.

Foxglove – we saw purple and white varieties
Several bunnies hopped around the campground!

Wednesday we did quite a bit of hiking around Whidbey Island at the northern boundary of Puget Sound – we visited 4 of the State Parks there.

The Wilbert Trail at South Whidbey State Park had a lot of very tall and old trees, We couldn’t get to the beach as a bridge on that trail was in need of repair, but we had a nice hike in the woods.

Saw some more of these bottle brush plants and lots of ferns. On further investigation, my brother Ted tells me these bottle brush plants are called horsetail. Horsetail is supposedly known for its anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antimicrobial, antioxidant, coagulant, demulcent, diuretic and astringent activity.

There were many REALLY BIG Douglas fir trees! This one was particularly large!

Fort Casey had two big guns that were moved there from the Philippines. When the fort was active, there were many more guns on site as evidenced by the several empty gun batteries.

The beach was full of washed up trees, which seemed to be the case all along this shore of Puget Sound.

There was a picturesque lighthouse at Fort Casey. It was closed even though it looked like restoration work was done.

Fort Ebey also had a few gun batteries. Both Forts never did have any enemy action during World War II but they were prepared! The beaches were quite scenic.

The last State Park we visited was Deception Pass; The name “Deception Pass” derived from Captain Vancouver’s realization that what he had mistaken for a peninsula was actually an island. He named that island “Whidbey” in honor of his assistant, Joseph Whidbey, who was at his side when Vancouver realized the mistake. The captain named the inlet at which he was anchored “Deception Pass” to commemorate the error. It is one of the largest island in the contiguous US.

Oak Harbor

This is the bridge over Canoe Pass

There is a metal bridge over Deception Pass – we took a short hike to see the bridge, and passed by this interesting stone bridge along the way

We didn’t get a good photo of the full bridge itself, but the view from atop bridge was awesome! There was some construction work going on underneath.

Thursday the weather was “iffy” so we took a long drove northeast — out to the North Cascades to see Diablo Lake in the Ross Lake National Recreation Area. Our first stop was at the bridge at Gorge Creek

A short walk took us to an overlook with a beautiful view

There are several dams along the Skagit River that provide power for the Seattle area; this is the Gorge High Dam

We drove on further to Diablo Lake

Friday we went for a short bike ride on the Kulshan Trail and around Mount Vernon. Then we went to see the views from Little Mountain Park. Here are some shots from the south view point.

From the North view point

overlooking Mount Vernon, WA – can’t really see Mount Baker – too cloudy!

Saturday we drove up to Bellingham to go on a whale watching tour! It was a beautiful day to be out on the water – but a bit chilly – in the 60’s – hey this is JULY isn’t it?!

We saw bald eagles… good thing we have a good camera to see them up close!

harbor seals

and orcas! This photo is taken with our big camera and zoomed way in. We followed these orcas for about an hour! The rules are that the vessel is to stay 300 yards from the whales or other wildlife, so binoculars or a zoom lens is helpful!

.. what we saw with our eyes looked more like the below photo…

Sunday we had virtual worship via YouTube with Stephens Valley Church, Linda worked on this blog and we prepared for our move on Monday to Chehalis, WA where we will stay 10 nights – that will be our longest stop since we left Nashville on March 27.


11 thoughts on “Bow, WA – north of Seattle”

  1. Linda, Both Bill and I LOVE the picture of you driving 🙂 I would never attempt that…ever. Especially enjoyed the picture of the troll bridge and great picture of the underneath the expansion bridge. SPECTACULAR picture of the Orcas and what was the odds of getting three of them in the same picture…good job! Thanks for letting us all follow along on your amazing journey and so happy for you guys to enjoying your time…stress free and work free!

    1. We are enjoying our adventures! Thanks for commenting – its good to know folks are looking at the blog – even if just to say “hi”! 🙂

  2. Enjoying your blog Linda! We love that area and I can’t believe you saw 3 Orcas. On our first whale watching trip, we saw one fin and and on the second, off the shore of Vancouver, we saw none. Just sea lions huddled on the buoys! What is it like at the RV parks? Crowded? Friendly?

    1. We followed that pod of orcas for about an hour! They came up for air and moved around – pretty cool!
      The RV parks are pretty full and most folks are friendly.
      Enjoying our adventures!

  3. Linda,
    Beth and I are enjoying your adventure. The route you are following is covering most of the states we have left to visit all 50 states. You wetting our appetite to hit the road.

    Continue to have fun and stay safe.

    Bob Cooper

    1. I have been to most of the 50 states since I traveled with my family in the 60’s and early 70’s and I really am not sure which states I have NOT visited – but Jim and I hope to cover all 50 – we have been to Alaska and Hawaii already – Acey obviously won’t go to Hawaii, but we are hoping to see the rest of the USA with her… Alaska is next year!!

  4. Wow, I’d heard horsetail was one of the first plants to show up in the ‘blast zone,’ left by the 1980 eruption of Mt St Helens. Now I know it is also most therapeutic. I could use some now as a wasp stung me leaving a welt on the back of my hand. Nature’s way of providing benadryl.

    1. Jim can’t drive all the time…. but I don’t know when I will drive again. It is a bit daunting but really doesn’t feel like I am in charge of a huge vehicle – and “toad” (the Jeep – Thor – trailing behind. Its actually kind of fun!

  5. Linda, this is so interesting and such beautiful scenery! I’m sure I have been to many of these places – I need to check my sister-in-laws list of our activities for 15 years of visits! James and his sister Sue went on the Whale watching trip and loved it.

    Saw LaDonna this week — 2nd time since pandemic – she is back at the salon but it is very different – masks on entire time – cleaning chairs and surfaces. Just talked to Betsy for the first time in a while. She told me about you Zoom Book Club meeting. Be safe in all your travels!

    1. We loved our stay in Bow! I had a second tragic haircut at Great Clips – Sure miss LaDonna!! We have a family Zoom on Sundays – and will likely be doing Zoom Book Club for a few months… Staying safe – except for my fall last Saturday – hoping to be a able to bike and hike again soon!

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