Onward and upward we went from Kalama to the home of the Space Needle and my eldest brother, Jake! We arrived in a timely fashion and my brother laid out plans for our dinner. From Jake’s apartment in Seattle, we walked a few blocks to find a cozy pub and grill, stocked full of mounted deer and horns on the walls, a moderate beer menu, and delicious dinner. We ordered a tasty butter leaf salad with chopped radishes and sweet green raisins. Yummm. Our bellies have never been more full and a late night walk home was just the preventive measure from a food coma. As you can imagine, that night, we slept soundly.
Monday made for a short visit with Jake. After a stop at REI, a beautiful walk in Volunteer Park, and lunch at Whole Foods, E and I were off again. We were headed for the US/Canadian border to try our luck at getting through without being searched (and having every little trinket taken out of our car). To our surprise, they let us in! YAYAY! We were not searched and we drove away with newly found love for our Canadian neighbors.
We hunkered down and continued north driving roughly an hour before calling it a night at Stawamus Chief Provincial Park in Squamish, BC. We woke up the following morning next to gigantic pillars and boulders of granite rock and amazing cedar trees! Up early, we hopped on a handful of classic boulder problems and sent some really cool stuff! Exploring Squamish, we met two guys, one from Montreal and the other from Vancouver who was enjoying the fruits of his very own, homegrown. “Hugs, not Drugs” Friends! We jumped back in Trixie and headed for our next destination of the afternoon, Whistler, BC!
We snaked through the incredibly picturesque Sea-to-Sky Highway before stopping to visit the welcoming tourist attraction, Whistler! What a site it was! Like us, several other people were there to visit this sprawling resort-town. We, however, only snagged a few photos and boogied out of town before mistakenly spending our entire bank accounts on specialty coffee, Olympic souvenirs, and Whistler knick-knacks.
The remainder of the day was spent meandering through some of the most beautiful countryside we have ever seen. The mountains were as steep and dramatic as the Wasatch, as tall as the Colorado Rockies, and as picturesque as the Cascades. The sea to sky highway picked its way carefully through lush fertile valleys, while breathtaking views waited around every bend. Cresting the range, we drove through a unique alpine environment full of rushing streams and mirrored lakes, which slowly gave way to a high dry plateau region reminiscent of the high deserts of southeastern Oregon. To this point in the journey, things have felt exciting, but you can’t help but remember we were only a few hours from Vancouver. Anxious to put some mileage down we pushed through to highway 97N and the small town of Lac La Hache where we stayed at “The Big Country Campground”.