Sharon, Hunter, and I are the trio for the last minute, spontaneous, and ridiculous day trips. There had been discussions about taking a mini trip somewhere the last weekend of August, but any concrete plans had been nixed by the fact we all had to move our of our respective residences with leases ending August 31st. Probably five days prior to the day we actually left, this road trip wasn’t even on the table. Who knows what changed, but Sharon and I suddenly decided LET’S GO TO THE COAST and convinced Hunter.
In order to maximize our time out there and minimize the amount of driving in the car for one single day, we left Saturday evening with a return on Sunday afternoon/evening - seems legit and reasonable. This Saturday coincided with Fight Night, so we didn’t hit the road until 10:30 pm…About an hour and half into the drive, we were starving and made a pit stop at Denny’s to qualm our hunger before realizing we still had another 1.5-2 hours to go. Ugh. Now we were starting to question this decision.
We continued on into the night through forested, dark, winding roads with the occasional car passing us here and there. As we drove further and further away from civilization, the stars grew brighter. Hunter attempted to convince me that he could see the Milky Way.
At about 2 am, we arrived at our destination, a town called Ocean Shores, Washington. The plan was to catch a few z’s in the car and then have a full day of exploring. Let me tell you, Ocean Shores is a small coastal town - quaint for sure - but we deliberated on where to park the car for about 30 minutes. We wanted somewhere well lit but not too lit, somewhere hidden but not a sketchy back alley situation, and so on. It was literally a Goldilocks situation. And with no Wal-Mart in sight to park in the back lot, we settled upon a side street that looked pretty unassuming. A combination of frustration, annoyance, me forcing everyone to listen to an absurd amount of LANY, and fatigue, took over as we bickered about setting up sleeping bags before finally attempting to sleep. We discussed the ridiculousness of our situation and laughed and laughed and laughed.
I personally did not sleep soundly, but we were all woken up at about 6:30 am by the sunrise. If I had to do it all again, I think I would have brought more cushions to sleep on, but it all worked out. We unfolded ourselves out of uncomfortable sleeping positions and drove to the beach where there was a bathroom in which we freshened up. A quick little walk through some dunes to the beach reinforced why it was all worth it with Pacific Ocean waves foaming at our feet. We wandered along the sandy shore taking in the morning hours and even spotting a bald eagle swooping for breakfast.
With no plan for the day, we drove a few minutes south to take in views at the jetty. We spotted hoards of deer along the way, and Sharon, who wanted to take a picture of one, was unable to take a picture of ANY of them because she was too excited with every encounter. At the jetty, landing (whatever you want to call it) we climbed the rocks and watched some of the early morning fog and mist burn off. On our way back into town we stopped at a little breakfast spot for provisions and hit the road again.
Heading north, we set our eye on Kalaloch about 1.5 hours away. The road took us through more gorgeous, forested scenery, with glimpses of looming mountains in the distance. As the roads weaved their way through foliage, our energy levels plummeted and we rotated backseat sleeper, copilot, and driver. The four hours of sleep we had gotten was coming back to bite us.
The way the road was designed, we cut inland then back out to the coast. This inland detour put us on the outskirts of Olympic National Forest where we took a necessary break to stretch our legs and breathe some fresh air. Lake Quinault provided the perfect spot and reminded us how nice of a day it was.
Much to Hunter’s chagrin, I made us stop off at the World’s Largest Spruce Tree before we hit the road again. I have a new project now, and that’s to take pictures of Sharon in front of trees starting with this one.
Eventually we made our way to Kalaloch Beach where soaked up some rays and saw this tree encroaching on a cove or maybe the other way around who knows. It looked cool.
At this point we were complete ravaged. We knew we had to start making our way back to Seattle, any other diversion would put us even further out, and we were already looking at a four hour drive home. After debating on a route, we settled upon taking the peninsula instead of the ferry from Port Angeles. Thus began the long journey home.
The first two hours were fine, nothing out of the norm, quite pleasant in my opinion seeing as I was napping in the backseat. Once we were in the range of Olympia, everything turned sour really quick. The combination of construction and Sunday afternoon traffic was in full force and devastated our return. We inched forward along the road and every time we had made progress, google maps still told us it would take two hours to get to Seattle.
The three of us felt AWFUL. The heat of my car, four hours of sleep, sitting for hours in the car, dehydration, and the thought of traffic prompted us to pull off at a Safeway between Olympia and Tacoma, and grab some food and drink to get us through this drive. We laughed again at our situation and hopped back in the car. The ride back ended up being about 5.5 - 6 hours...absolutely brutal. Once we were back, we took a break and refueled before parting ways. People asked if we had fun and we sure did! However, I question how good of an idea it was to sleep in the car and drive so much in one day. Oh well. We’ve got some funny memories from this day trip.
A lot of my photos from this trip also were out of focus *major eye roll* but they make for a fun vibe. Always a fun time traveling with these two.