Thursday, July 23, 2015

WEST COAST ROAD TRIP {Camping in Northern California and Oregon}

After San Francisco we moved on to camping in Northern California.  We originally planned on camping in the National Redwood Forest, but another long driving day landed us in a state park.  Thankfully, we found a camp site without much effort and as the sun set, we set up.
Normally, when we camp we just drive off a trail and pick a spot, but for this trip we stayed at actual campsite, I'll talk about the pros and cons over the next few posts, but this one was nice, it had a parking space off the loop and while it backed up to the freeway the trees softened the sound of the cars driving by. 
The girls had a great time, finally using their new camping light from target.  Once the bed was made we slept like rocks.
When we woke up in the morning we ate some breakfast
and husband retied and reloaded the car.
looking up.
and watching the girls play through the trees.
I didn't even try to stop her.  Kids are supposed to get dirty when camping, right?
Husband finished rolling up the tent and we were on our way.
I texted my friend who lived in the Eureka area a couple of years ago and she suggested Renata's Creperie
I love Crepes so obviously we went there.
Vera and Husband were goofing off while I enjoyed my bowl of a latte {Mocha with almond milk and whipped cream} 
Everything was amazing, and even though their credit card machine was down I was able to write a check and get on our way.  Which was good, because we had a lot of driving a head of us.
Wished I was able to pull over and document every interesting thing we saw on the drive but with two small kids, it was better to not pull over.  But I love old building and structure and they're even more interesting to me when they're being reclaimed by nature.  Like what happened here, who stopped taking care of this farm? Can you still go inside? just so intriguing to me.
More Pacific Coast Highway.
And finally to Oregon!
Trees on trees.
We found a campsite in Umpqua National Park in Island Campgrounds. Our tent was right on the water.  I noticed lots of the campsites were full, but somehow we always managed to get a space, even though we didn't reserve anything {until Yellowstone}. 
We walked down to the water and explored a bit, since we got in before it was dark!
our little campsite, just up the hill from the stream.
The girls loved splashing in the shallow puddles.
Husband reheated leftovers and made some pasta and sauce, for dinner.  I love our little stove, it makes camping with kids much easier since we can still cook regular meals.
The next morning we drove to Umpqua Falls to find the hot springs.  We found this gypsy bus on the way, that's a VW bus on top of a school bus, so you know they're legit!
After parking and walking past the naked guy in the parking lot and the various campers we started up the trail to the hot springs.
Only a slight smell of sulfur, and it wasn't really cool outside either, so they felt really hot.
but of course we had to get in, and once we were in the girls didn't want to get out.
seriously impressive, being on the edge of a mountain and looking down to a river below, while bathing in a hot spring? take me back.
We hung out for about 30 minutes, until more people started showing up, and getting naked. 
The girls just loved it, Vera is a little fish and Sonja is finally starting to getting used to it.
After convincing the girls to head back to the car so we could start our drive to Portland we hiked back down.
I think Umpqua might have been my favorite of all our campsites, but I'll share the other's later and let you be the judge.  If you're in the Oregon definitely make the effort to check it out, it's worth the sketchy parking lot and random people. I promise.

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