camping

Roughin’ It

We went “camping” (in a yurt) in May and had a great time. I booked it a year in advance because the yurts book up super fast. I wanted to try camping in a tent, too, but kind of waited too long and everything (EVERYWHERE) was booked for most of the summer. I did manage to find one spot available to reserve: Camp Creek Campground up on Mount Hood.

Over the weekend we packed up the car and drove to the mountain to camp. In a tent. With a toddler. And a dog.

We had no idea what to expect. There were definitely some things against us: the recent wildfires = smoky conditions; due to fire hazards campfires were banned everywhere in Oregon; I was getting over a mild head cold (fun); we had no idea how Bella would react sleeping in a tent hearing everything outside; and it was supposed to rain on Sunday (of course). But…we decided to give it a go and try anyways. Besides, we were an hour from home so if it was absolutely terrible, we could always just go home.

Our camping gear needed some SERIOUS organizing and updating. I went through everything Friday morning and replaced it with some new stuff I got on Amazon:

New space-saving dog bowls

A collapsible space-saving bin for doing dishes

A new waterproof bag for storing sleeping bags

A sleeping bag for Logan,Β Β and a new sleeping bag for me!

A first aid kitΒ 

When we drove to the campground, we realized it was Hood to Coast! We saw tons of runners and several of the relay points. It was cool.

We got to the campground at the base of Mount Hood and found our spot, #6. It was towards the end of the right loop, right by a hike and the creek.

The campground is small, I think 25 sites or so, and they are spaced apart nicely so you aren’t right on top of your neighbor. It makes for a much nicer and quieter camping experience. Our spot was a decent size. Michael set up the tent while I unpacked stuff and kept Logan busy.

It was also nice that the road in the campground was pretty quiet.

I saw a few other sites that would be nice to check out next year.

Michael got us a new air mattress and I guess he splurged and got a 18 inch one! Wowza! It was pretty nice. A lot more comfortable than sleeping on the ground and it didn’t lose air like the thinner ones tend to do. After camp was set up we had some refreshments and then set out to explore a bit.

Then back to camp for dinner. Hot dogs and baked beans.

It was a real bummer we couldn’t have a campfire. I think that definitely changed the experience. πŸ™ We didn’t have much to do by way of entertainment for the kiddo (no s’mores, campfire songs, etc) so it was a little harder to keep Logan occupied.

We ended up just going to bed when it got dark.

Soooo………Logan isn’t quite ready for a tent. He didn’t really understand it. He was scared at first and cried and then when we were all in there together to go to sleep he thought it was playtime. HOW do parents co-sleep??? I’ve never done it until now and it was hard.

Logan was jumping around in his sleeping bag, flopping around, hitting us, rolling over. Geeez. He thought jumping up and down was a good idea. Eventually I rolled over and ignored him and he finally laid down and went to sleep.

Overnight was ok. Logan slept really well all night. I was a little concerned about him being cold but whenever I woke up to check on him and put his blanket back on him, he’d throw it off in his sleep.

Our campsite was nice! We weren’t directly next to the creek but it was loud and we could hear it just fine. It was like magic for sleep. Who needs a sleep machine? The creek was peaceful and we all went right to sleep.

I woke up a few times in the night when it got really cold. I think it was 40 degrees or so overnight. We planned for it still was a little shocking, especially first thing in the morning. When Logan woke us up at dawn.

We ended up getting up at 6:30am or so because there was no keeping Logan quiet at this point. He was raring to go and I was worried he’d wake up other campers. That’s what I meant by, he’s not ready for tent camping. The yurt was perfect and I think that’s what we need to stick to for a few more years. Once he’s older and understands the etiquette of tent camping it will be fun.

So we got up at dawn and had breakfast. It was friggin’ cold! We all layers and hats on and it was still freezing. So we discussed our next move.

Rain was in the forecast for Saturday night and Sunday. We decided it would NOT be fun to wake up at dawn in the cold and pouring rain with a toddler and then pack up camp so we decided to just make our trip a one night event. It was the best decision.

I will say, Bella was AMAZING. She did SUCH a good job camping and staying at our campsite and sleeping in the tent. She was a little rock star.

After breakfast we sat in the car to try and warm up a bit (I was a little worried about how cold Logan was) and then we packed everything up and went for a “hike.”

At the bridge in the campground there is a trailhead for Still Creek Trail. It was easy and 1.5 miles and something Logan could do. So that’s what we did after breakfast.

It was a nice little hike along the creek and then the trail goes into the old growth forest and it’s really peaceful and pretty.

We eventually turned around and went back because we didn’t know if it was a loop or not and didn’t want to get stuck at the end having to turn around (and carry Logan back). So we hiked back and then loaded the car.

We got home for lunch, showers, and AMAZING naps. We ALL took a glorious nap. It was a lazy afternoon and just what we all needed!

 

Beverly Beach Camping

I used to go camping all the time. Growing up, we went backpacking as kids with my parents. At the time I didn’t like backpacking–it was a LOT of work! But looking back at those experiences, they were pretty amazing things.

Michael and I really want to give Logan lots of experiences we had as kids–like camping. BUT we are both old. Like dang, the idea of camping in a tent, sleeping on the ground……….I just don’t know. Over the weekend we did go camping (in a YURT!) and it was fantastic!

If you’ve never camped in a yurt, I highly recommend it. It’s a fun experience and keeps you out of the elements a little bit, which is a nice thing in Oregon when you can’t really guarantee what the weather would be (even in August). The downside is that you have to book them very far in advance. I think I booked our yurt 9 months ago.

We stayed at Beverly Beach about 20 minutes north of Newport, OR. It was a REALLY nice park. We’ve never been there before. It was really nice. Since it’s early in the season, it wasn’t too packed. It was pretty quiet.

The yurt was nice and had electricity for charging stuff πŸ˜‰ and a heater–which was nice because it was pretty cold at the beach over the weekend.

On Friday I had the day off work and took Logan to daycare for the morning so I could go to the gym and the grocery store and pack the car. Then Michael got home after lunch and we hit the road. It was perfect timing, too, because Logan took his nap for most of the drive to the beach!

We unpacked and got settled and built a campfire. Then Logan was raring to go to ride his bike. Logan and Bella were super excited exploring our little campground. There weren’t a ton of people there. There were probably like 40% full–most of them were RVs but there were quite a few tents!

Logan had SO MUCH FUN. He was excited about exploring everything. He helped me pick up twigs for starting the fire. We could hear the frogs in the ponds arounds us (you can hear them on video on my Instagram if you want).

It was a weekend full of BBQ’ed hot dogs, s’mores and getting super dirty!

So…the downside? I thought I was super smart and got dry ice for the cooler. Except we discovered that the beer and eggs…basically everything…froze! So Michael went to the nearby store to get unfrozen stuff. We had eggs and sausages for breakfast on Saturday.

Then I took Bella with me for a run. We ran around the campgrounds and explored the different camping loops and then headed down to the beach. We ran on the beach and it was a really nice run! I was slow after being sick the previous weekend, and Bella is not QUITE coordinate to run but she did well. πŸ˜‰

I got back to the campsite to find Logan napping. LOL

After my run I showered (the showers were REALLY nice and hot, so that was good). I took a short nap–unplanned). Then Logan woke up and we drove to Newport for lunch. We ended up at Rogue Brewery. I got a sandwich that was a little too much of everything–so big you couldn’t even take a bite–with a bowl of clam chowder and Michael got an AMAZING burger with caramelized onions and fried cheese curds on it plus beer. πŸ˜€

Logan’s lunch was a grilled cheese sandwich with fries and it came on a frisbee! (Which we ended up playing with for most of the afternoon back at the site.)

Then it was back to the campsite. Logan wanted to take another nap so he and Michael went to sleep and Bella and I went for a long walk on the beach.

Saturday night we had dinner and s’mores and then to bed fairly early. One of the downsides of a yurt is that there is a skylight, which does NOT make it toddler friendly! Logan was up at dawn both days. Needless to say we were both tired.

On Sunday we had breakfast and then packed everything up and went to the beach for a bit.

It was a nice day. A little gloomy but the sun was poking out of the clouds. It wasn’t as cold as it was on Saturday. Beverly Beach was nice and not too crowded and not windy at all. So it was a good beach to play on.

Logan and Bella had a blast playing in the sand (and getting even more filthy than ever). It was such a nice, relaxing, chill weekend where we were able to unplug a little bit. We didn’t have great service, so it kind of forced us to unplug. It was fun to just hang out as a family and do nothing!

After the beach trip, we headed home (with a pit-stop in Wilsonville for pizza for lunch). I hosed both Logan and Bella down immediately (ok, not really, but they both had very soapy baths to get the filth off!). We unpacked, Logan and I went grocery shopping and then I got to go swimming. It was nice to have a little me time to unwind. It was a fun, awesome weekend, but a lot of work! By Sunday night Logan was SO overtired he could barely make it to bedtime. πŸ˜‰

I think we are going to try and go camping (IN A TENT!) this summer. I think Logan will LOVE it. πŸ˜€