Before leaving Claar Cellars, Debbie came by to say goodbye, give us hugs and exchange email addresses. How sweet was that? We then proceeded North on Interstate 82 to Yakima. Yakima looked like a really interesting town yet we decided to charge ahead on State Road 12. We began a gradual climb which escalated to quite a climb! Abbey labored a little but got us up the mountains just fine.
Just outside Randle, Washington we pulled into Shady Firs RV park. It is aptly named as we are nestled amongst some large, shady fir trees. And at less than $14.00 a night including 50 amp, water and cable, we like it a lot! Not to mention we are the only guests in the park.
Rain was in the forecast for the next two days, but we decided not to let it dampen our plans. Monday we headed toward Mount St Helens where we encountered a really beautiful stretch of old growth forest with firs and trees with enormous girths. As we walked among these giants, Sharon mentioned she felt rather like a Hobbit. Unfortunately further down Forest Road 25 a bridge had washed out thereby forcing road closure. We stopped at a clear cut which reminded us of the devastation caused by the eruption of Mt. St Helens yet all around us the greenery emerging reminded us life goes on. We even picked a few wild flowers to brighten the motor home and stopped at the Big Bottom Bar and Grill in Randle to reflect on our day over a couple of frosty mugs.
along the drive and once into the park it was even more lush. The winding road revealed the craggy mountain spires lathered in snow and glaciers shrouded in low lying clouds. Our lunch stop was at a point facing Mount Rainier but it was completely covered in clouds. To our delight as we gazed at the mountain the clouds kept drifting thus revealing peeks of the mountain. Because we were there so long gazing and eating we were able to put the pieces of the puzzle together thus exposing the entire mountain in its enormity and grandeur.
I have seen a lot of mountains in my life but none as imposing as this. After lunch we continued to Paradise Point and the Visitor Center enjoying the exhibits and movie. As we started back home we stopped to see several of the picturesque waterfalls. Then the forecasted rain began to fall but we planned an indoor meal of spinach cheese manicotti so it could rain all it wanted.
Today we are headed to Ft Stevens State Park where we will stay for a week. We look forward to visiting another friend and exploring the town of Astoria.