A Little Northwest Explorer

After much waiting, it was finally time for our big summer vacation out in Washington. On Friday evening we managed to throw everything into two carry-ons and a couple of backpacks. No checked luggage! Our flight from Denver to Washington was an early one but all went pretty smoothly. We caught the 6:05a train to Union Station. With 8 minutes to spare we were on the bus, just in time to feed William. We arrived exactly 1 hour at the airport before our flight. Getting thru security was a little bit of a chore with a jogging stroller and car seat. Clearly I am inexperienced and after the car seat got stuck twice in the x-ray machine, I shoved my hand in the box and gave it some good old brute force. After that, it was a quick walk to the gate, where we walked right on the plane at 7:50. Twenty minutes later, the plane rolled out 10 minutes early!

William did great on the plane. We were seated near the back and with all the other kids on the flight, it was pretty much a full-on day care center. There was some crying here and there by William, but overall not bad. The flight was a just a few minutes early and we were even able to make the very end of McDonald’s breakfast!

Finally we made it to Shelton and William met his two cousins, along with Aunt Rima for the first time. He just discovered his voice and is really starting to “talk” and even some laughs here and there. The rest of the day was spent relaxing and we had a big dinner with rotisserie pork loin and berry pie for desert.

Sunday it was off to church in the morning and then a few friends came over in the afternoon to meet the little boy. Kenan even fired up the apple press and squeezed out some fresh apple juice from the nearby apple tree.

The plan for Monday was to hike up Mt. Ellinor, in the Olympic Range, with Kenan and Rima. It’s just a short hike, but with about 2,500 vertical feet over 1.6 miles with 90 degree heat and an extra 11 pound weight, it was a nice little workout.

With our early start, the trail wasn’t too busy and we enjoyed spectacular views of Lake Cushman below. It was too hazy to see Mt. Rainer.

At the top, William quickly decided he too needed a summit snack!

The veiws of the nearby Olympics, including Mt. Mount Olympus, were great.

There was just enough of a breeze to give us a short reprieve from the heat. Sort of strange that this hike was warmer than a lot of the Colorado 14ers. The traverse to Mt. Washington looked fun, but we had other swimming plans in mind back down in Lake Cushman! William enjoyed time with Uncle Kenan on the way down.

The temperature of the lake was perfect, mid 70s.

We hit up one of the Butler’s old rock jumping spots and had fun whooping it up.

We spied out a rope swing down the shore and made a quick swim over for more jumping Tarzan style! William even got his first feel of lake water. He didn’t quite know what to make of it but was okay for a few seconds up to his waist. It probably won’t be long before he’s letting out crazy yelps and doing canon balls himself.

2 thoughts on “A Little Northwest Explorer

  • August 12, 2014 at 7:45 am

    Thanks for the great update! We loved all the pics, and the writings. Sure looks like a wonderful time, with little Will not too sure about it all. The lake looked absolutely fun! We also enjoyed the last blog with Q–how beautiful it was, and your pics showed it. We really enjoyed the video.
    Keep having a wonderful time. Love, Mom

  • August 12, 2014 at 8:40 am

    Thanks mom! We’re off to Fort Columbia today and the coast. It looks like weather is going to be wet for a couple days. I’m still planning on going in the ocean though!

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