Sunday, 6 November 2011
My Scottish Heritage does not like this!
Had to toss a few meat items and veggies into the trash in preparation for our voyage to America. We did try to eat it all, really! Mailed off a couple of boxes of stuff for storage. Thanks Wendy and Kim. We wanted to get it done while we were still in Canada. It's amazing what you can live without! Madly rolled the bulk of our canuck coins to be changed to US funds and bulked up our wallets with some greenbacks.
Drove south to Victoria and parked for ferry boarding two hours before sailing time. Beautiful sunny afternoon where we could enjoy the pleasure boats and tour planes going to and fro in the harbour. The border folk came around to each of us and we were cleared for entry. We had no problems or inspections nor did we have to throw out any open dog food. Had a warm meal in CC waiting for the ferry arrival. Just before we were about to board, our friends showed up by chance and waved us goodbye. We waved farewell from the deck like royalty setting out on The Queen Mary. Great journey across the Juan de Fuca Strait viewing sealions, dolphin, transport ships, a coastal "Pilot" patrol boat, a destroyer and the snowy peak of Mount Baker.
Disembarking and customs in Port Angeles went smoothly and we headed directly to our campsite at the
Elwha Dam campsite. Hiked down to the dam in the morning to see a partially complete dam-destruction project. The former electric dam is being converted back to its natural state and the locals trust that the salmon will soon be back. We agreed that it was a damn good idea.
Next stop, Washington Olympic National Park. The helpful park guide told us to head up to the pass soon as a storm was blowing in. She also warned us that it would likely be cold up there. We headed up a switchback road often covered with loose stones and gravel that had tumbled down the hill. The views of the valley were spectacular as we peered down upon the Strait and the dwarfed town below. The thrill factor was heightened with the lack of barriers and guard rails along the cliff edges! Seventeen miles up
at 5,242 feet above the sea, we parked for our hike. When we stepped out of the car, all three of us were practically turned inside out. Dixie loved it, Chris and I, not so much. We learned that the average wind speed up there is about 75mph., perhaps why they call it "Hurricane Ridge". The freezing air was exhilarating and made the amazing view of the snow capped mountain ridge all the more impressive. We sought shelter under the stunted sub-alpine fir trees. Talk about survival instincts; those trees exhibit years of struggle and glory in their windswept stances. We hiked up higher where our view was even more magnificent and where we could see Mount Baker so clearly, we felt we could reach out and touch it. Hiking over frozen ground, being careful not to slip on the snow and ice was an experience we'd not had for awhile. When we descended to the warmth of the car we were treated to seeing the black clouds descend over the ridge and pour down blowing snow. We headed immediately to the nearest bowls of warm soup we could find! How does clam chowder in a freshly baked brown bread-bowl sound? Sorry Liz!
Thursday November 3, drove southwest to the shipbuilding, boat repair, harbour town of Port Townsend.
Settled at the Point Hudson Marina and RV Park with a view of Port Townsend Bay and Admirality Inlet.
Ed and Kim were here in the spring with friends sailing on a catamaran. They had told us about this quaint town known for its Victorian homes and arts community. Dani would love the shops, restaurants and galleries here. Spent our first afternoon basking in the afternoon sun watching the flow of kayaks, sailboats, cargo ships, local ferry and seabirds.