In the past few days we have had expectations dashed and expectations exceeded.
We spent the weekend at Priest Lake State Park. The lake was beautiful and the water clear. A campground program director reminded us of a cruise director with activities at varied times of the day and evening for all age levels. And then there was the campground….expectations dashed!
We knew this was a very popular park because reservations are hard to come by. Given that this is a high profile park we expected a nice campground with some of the improvements we have seen at other Idaho State Parks. But, even though I had put in our trailer length, we had the tightest, smallest site ever and Randy had to try multiple times to even get us in. He is usually very accomplished at backing in our trailer and he was considering bailing. When we finally got in, we had about 6 inches of clearance between our trailer and some concrete pilings.
The concrete pilings were the only demarcation between our campsite and the ones on either side. We were right on top of each other and it wasn’t pretty! On one side we had a couple from Washington who were very pleasant. He and his large group had been reserving 2 weeks at Priest Lake for years. The other side had two families that made us glad we were having a short stay. Music, yelling at the kids, campfire smoke non-stop etc. .. better to have difficult neighbors this way than in a regular house!
We decided to leave the campground on Saturday and drove to the west side of the lake. We visited Granite Waterfall and the Roosevelt Cedar Grove containing large 800 year old cedars. There were nice things about the visit!
We left Sunday morning headed to a “spot on the map” – Winthrop, Washington. I knew little about the stop except the private campground had good ratings and we needed a stop somewhere mid-Washington. I generally try to look for campgrounds in our membership systems and/or state parks. As neither were available here I looked at the third option, a private park. Oh my, expectations EXCEEDED!
Our little campground, Pine Near RV Park, was such a nice surprise. We have a wonderful spot with grass everywhere. I didn’t realize how much I’d missed grass until we have it all around us again. It is clean and cool and Elko enjoyed playing with his toys in the grass. There are deer wandering around the park, with one even getting into the neighbor’s foodstuffs.
The town of Winthrop is an old-west tourist town complete with boardwalks and false front buildings. We have wandered through town, visited their Historical Museum and walked across the river on both of their suspension bridges. We spent a nice afternoon sipping hard cider and eating cider donuts and peanuts for lunch. We went to the Northern Cascades Smokejumper Unit and had a tour of their facility. Smoke jumping started in Winthrop, Washington in 1939.
Today was hot, 99 degrees, which was just tolerable in a trailer with one air conditioner. Once we knew we were returning to Boise in August and September, Randy has spent time researching a second air conditioner. Today validated that need!
Tomorrow we are on the road again, headed to Blaine, on the Puget Sound right up by the Canadian border. And cooler weather!