hiking

First Camping Trip

There was a bit of a dark cloud over my August. But summer wasn’t over, yet, and we had some stuff that we’d planned a long time ago, so that was a nice distraction from my sadness, too.

We did some camping in the Stub Stewart Park. We rented one of the rustic cabins and friends joined us. This was the first time we went “camping” with Logan and Bella. We’re hoping to go actual camping next summer! It was nice to get out of the house.

We’ve been to Stub Stewart park a bunch of times for day trips/hiking/picnics and it’s super cute and fun! We booked a cabin back in February (they book out far in advance!). The cabins are really cute. They are sort of private. They are pretty rustic–there’s electricity and a ceiling fan but that’s it. There was a bunk bed and a futon with mats on it, so it was better than sleeping on the ground.

We got cabin #8 at the end and it was a more private spot and it was pretty shaded, too, which was nice because it was in the 90’s again.

So I’m not going to sugar-coat it. Yes, the pictures and videos I posted looked good and we had fun but……….camping with a toddler was HARD WORK. Logan was into everything. He was fascinated by the fire pit and got covered in ash. He did not want to sleep in his crib in the cabin and we basically spent 2 days just chasing him around the campsite. Gone are the relaxing days where I get to sit back in a camping chair with a book and a beer and relax. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Despite the hard work it was to chase Logan and keep him out ofย everything, he was obviously having a fabulous time and loved every single minute of it! That was kind of cool to see and made me happy. It will be a little bit easier next year, I think, when Logan is a little bit older and understands more stuff.

We were there Sunday–Tuesday. Our friends joined us with their dog (which Bella loved having a playmate around!) and their 4 year old daughter. Logan LOVED chasing after the big kid! There was a trailhead right by our cabin and the kids just ran up and down the trail in a loop. ๐Ÿ™‚

On Monday it was going to be 95 degrees and since Logan wasn’t sleeping great in the cabin, we knew he wouldn’t nap so we decided to take a day trip to Seaside. It was a great idea. Logan got a 1 hour nap on the way there (perfect) and we hung out in much cooler weather on the beach!

This was the third beach trip this summer! Logan is now an expert. ๐Ÿ˜‰ This time he didn’t try and eat any sand! But he did discover how much fun it is to dig around in wet sand and get all dirty.

Logan loved running around on the beach, chasing daddy, chasing Bella…

It was so cool to see how much fun everyone was having! Bella was having a blast, too. She loves the beach. This time we brought her ball and let her off leash. She’s been doing so much better off-leash, so she got to run amok and wear herself out.

It was kind of the perfect day. We had a picnic lunch on the beach, had some beers. This was the most fun (and most relaxing) part of the camping trip. It was just fun to chill out and let the kids and dogs go nuts on the beach.

After that we got ice cream in Seaside then drove back to the campground. Logan got another nap, perfect timing! We got back and took showers. The facilities at Stub Stewart are really nice! It felt awesome to take a cool shower.

Monday night was hot. We had planned on going on a hike all together but it was just too hot for dogs and babies to hike. So we took it easy. We had burgers (with goat cheese, grilled figs and arugula) for dinner and sat by the campfire until pretty late. It was another rough night with Logan. He didn’t want to sleep.. ๐Ÿ™ It was just hot and weird and out of the norm, I guess.

Tuesday morning we had pancakes for breakfast, lots of cold brew coffee for this tired mama, packed up the campsite and our friends left and we did a quick (and short) family hike in the park before heading home.

I think our hike was just over 2 miles. ๐Ÿ™‚ Logan crashed immediately. And then when we put him in the car to head back to Portland, he slept the whole way too!

Man, that first shower at home after camping was so amazing. ๐Ÿ˜€ Even though it was hard work, it was a lot of fun and I am already forgetting the stressful moments and only remembering the happiness on Logan’s face. I know it will get easier next time!

 

Kid-Free Adventure Day

What a busy summer! We were kind of making up for last summer, I guess. Last summer we didn’t do much, we didn’t really go anywhere. We were home-bound in the newborn baby fog of lack of sleep and breastfeeding and just trying to stay alive. LOL So this summer has definitely been full of adventures.

Michael’s mom recently offered to babysit Logan for the day so Michael and I made plans to have a baby and dog-free date day! We had to go Syncline Winery to pick up our wine from our membership, so we decided to do a hike and have lunch, too.

We went to Trapper Creek in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest. It was fairly close to the other hike we did up there, Falls Creek Falls, about 15 miles north of Carson, Washington. The hike was pretty easy to find, even though the GPS quit at Carson.

It was a really hot day and even in the old growth forest, it was still 100 degrees out. We got a late start to the day, so it was about 11:30 by the time we started the hike. It was a pretty hike in the forest.

There were several other trails that connected to Trapper Creek, so I think you could spend days exploring out there. It was so weird hiking without the dog and baby. For one, it took no time at all to pack the car and then get ready to hike. It literally took 2 minutes to put our boots on and go. LOL Very different than the time it takes to get Bella ready, then Logan, then get Logan in the pack and on Michael’s back…. ๐Ÿ™‚

The hike was listed as “Difficult” on the hiking website I use. I can never really tell what that means…like is it a hard hike? Is it classified as difficult because it was long? You can never really tell. This hike started out pretty easy. We discussed whether or not this was actually a “difficult” hike and then all of a sudden, the trail started going uphill and it was most definitely difficult!

Once we crossed the small creek and got to the other side, it was ALL UPHILL. And steep! Apparently we climbed over 800 feet, which doesn’t sound like much but that climb was in less than 2 miles. So pretty steep!

It definitely got our hearts pumping and with the workout and hot day, we were drenched in sweat. (The one time I forget to pack a hiking towel…)

The trail was really peaceful and we didn’t really see anybody else on the hike, except when we first started out. It was a good hike and a good workout.

The trail kept climbing and climbing and finally we decided to turn around at 2.5 miles. It was pretty steep and we were both starting to get hungry. Plus, it was getting pretty late in the day. We turned around and hiked back down the mountain.

We did just over 5 miles total and I burned 730 calories. It was a sweaty one!

I really love seeing the graphs of our hike! So fun to see after the fact. After the hike we grabbed snacks from the cooler (salami, cheese and some soda), cleaned up and changed and then drove to Syncline to go wine tasting and have lunch.

Originally we were going to try and go back to Big Man’s BBQ food cart that we absolutely LOVED but we were running out of time. The hike took longer than we expected. Plus, Syncline had sent me an email the day before saying they were going to have a small wood-fire pizza oven there for Saturday’s wine tasting. Perfect!

We ordered the lamb and pepper pizza for our lunch.

While we waited for our pizza, we did some wine tasting. I didn’t love the Rose they had and there was a white I didn’t really like, but I did get a taste of my favorite white they sell–the Grenache Blanc. Delicious! Definitely brought a bottle of that home.

We played a little corn hole while we waited for lunch. We had both been looking forward to lounging in the hammocks like we did last time, this time without a squirmy baby trying to flip us over! ๐Ÿ˜‰ But unfortunately it was 100+ degrees and laying in the hammock in the sun didn’t sound appealing to either of us.

Finally the small pizza was ready and we were famished. We devoured the pizza. Michael thought it was just ok, he wanted more cheese on it, but I loved it. I thought it was great and smokey and the crust was perfect.

Lunch was good and hit the spot after the hike.

It was starting to get late in the day and we had to get home to Logan, so we wrapped it up and headed home. It was a really nice day away from home just the two of us. I can’t even remember the last time we had a date night. It was a gorgeous day in the Gorge and an excellent start to the long weekend.

On a more serious note, we left The Gorge about 30 minutes before a wildfire started. It started at Eagle Creekย because some teenagers decided it was a smart idea to throw fireworks into the forest during the hottest, driest season we’ve probably had in decades. The wildfires started and spread quickly. 140+ hikers were trapped on the trail and had to be rescued. The wildfires quickly spread throughout the Gorge, and even jumped across the Columbia River into the Washington side. More soon…