Lake Chelan State Park

Most of Washington’s state parks are pretty great. The parks are located in some of the most beautiful areas in Washington. If I were to rate the parks on a scale of 1-10, Lake Chelan would most definitely be a 10. You can get a campsite on a gorgeous lake, and park your boat on a nearby dock. What else can you ask for?

Okay, okay. Maybe it would have been nice to be closer to a bathroom (it was a 5 minute walk from my site), and my husband said that the men’s bathroom was gross. Also, it’s extremely popular, which means it’s very crowded. But man, Lake Chelan is really amazing, and those lakefront campsites are calling me to return.

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The campsite

The stairs from the road to the campsite – The view of the lake from the campsite

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The campsite

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Enjoying the lake at Don Morse Park in Chelen. It was 90 degrees and sunny. Does it get any better?

More information

Lake Chelan State Park – reservations are highly recommended in the summer

Exploring northern Lake Chelan

Ever since my first visit to Stehekin (the town on the north end of Lake Chelan), I’ve been wanting to explore the remote campsites along the lake. Luckily, I have family members who own boats, and said family members sometimes take us out on their boats.

Back in May, we took a quick weekend trip over to Chelan. One day, we explored the entire lake by boat. We launched the boat in the town of Chelan, and we drove it all the way up to Stehekin.

Along the way, we stopped at a few of the remote campgrounds. There were not any campers yet, so we had the places to ourselves.

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Safety Harbor campground

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Prince Creek campground

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The final stop for the day was Stehekin. We had a delicious lunch at the lodge. Unfortunately, the Stehekin Pastry Company was still closed for the season.

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Lake Chelan is probably my favorite lake in the state. I love how beautiful it gets as you travel north. I’d like to camp at one of the many northern campgrounds sometime.  Below is a list of the campgrounds in the national park.

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For more information on camping at Lake Chelan, go to the national park service website here.

Wenatchee Crest Snowshoe

Hello 2016!

Here in the PNW, the heavens have opened and dumped lots of snow onto our mountains. Last year, my husband and I purchased our own set of snowshoes. By new years day, I was ready to get out and get my first snow hike in. I did a ton of research on the best snowshoe hikes in the area. There were a couple of good ones in Snoqualmie Pass, but I was worried about the crowds.  We decided to drive up to the pass to see how busy it was. From the freeway, I could tell that the roads near I-90 were a zoo and we drove onto Blewett Pass.  We came up to the Blewett Sno-Park, and there were parking spots! Going the extra miles away from busy Snoqualmie Pass really paid off.

The hike was beautiful, and the views were spectacular! We saw lots of people on the trail, but it didn’t feel crowded. I can’t wait to get out and do it again.

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Related links:

WTA Wentachee Crest Snowshoe Guide

Winter in the Methow Valley

I’ve been visiting the Methow Valley for a few years now, but this was my first winter trip. When planning the trip a year ago, we decided that this would be our time to try Nordic or skate skiing.  After all, the Methow Valley has over 120 miles of trails. Maybe it was the fact that we were so excited about our new snowshoes, but we decided not to try it this year. The Methow Valley had about 80% of the normal snow pack but there was not any fresh snow. Regardless if you ski or not, the Methow Valley is awesome in the winter.

We stayed at the Sun Mountain Lodge, and the views from the lodge are awesome. You can see mountains every time you turn around. By day we snowshoed on the trails and by night we were sipping beer at the Old Schoolhouse Brewery.

The Sun Mountain Lodge doesn’t have TV, and the internet was terrible. I did not have cell coverage the whole weekend, so it was a pretty great escape from life.

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We always spend the trip home dreaming about our own Methow Valley homestead. I even looked up the school district to see if I could possibly work there. With only 600 students, they probably don’t need a full time psychologist. Oh well, a girl can dream. See you again soon Methow Valley!

Helpful links

Methow Winter Trails

Snowshoeing at Paradise

Have you ever tried a new activity and quickly wondered why you have gone your whole life without that activity?

That’s exactly how I felt the first time I went snowshoeing.

In the PNW, we’ve had an awesome winter. (Although, it’s not so great for snow, which is unfortunate since I’m finally at a point in life where I can afford to ski.) One Saturday in January, my husband and I woke up and checked the webcam at Paradise on Mount Rainier. There were clear blue skies despite the low land fog.  We didn’t have snowshoes and we were not sure if we could rent some there. As we neared the park, we drove past a sign that advertised snowshoe rentals. About $30 later, and an hour later we made it to the parking lot.

We didn’t exactly know where to go, but there were tons of people snowshoeing up the mountain so we followed everyone up. There didn’t appear to be any signs so we really have no idea how far we went or what trail we were on. (Not very helpful am I?)

The views were amazing, and I was once again in awe at the beauty of the mountain. I love this state!

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P.S. When it’s sunny with highs in the 40’s, you really don’t need to wear tons of layers or snow gear. Unless of course, you want to sweat a lot.