A true adventure by John M and Kay A Coffman
There were a few places we wanted to see while we were on our way home. I had never seen the Pacific Ocean. We wanted to see the Olympic Rainforest. We wanted to see the Columbia River, the one Lewis and Clark sailed down to the Pacific Ocean. Also the huge old trees, some 8 ft. in diameter.
While on Rt. 101 around the Rainforest the road ran along the ocean at Ruby Beach. Kay was walking along the beach when she saw this large wave coming. She tried to run and fell down on the rock covered beach . When I turned around and saw that the wave had completely consumed her, we had something to laugh about all the way home. She got baptized in the Pacific. She looked like a wet walrus lying on the beach.
We left the ocean and drove through the town of Olympia, the capital , and on to Tacoma, my old stomping grounds while I was stationed at Ft. Lewis. That was the prettiest army post I was ever on. I recognized hardly anything though. From there we went on Rt. 410 through Enumclaw to Mt. Rainier National Park and camped in one of their many campgrounds. While there we visited their gift shop where I bought a huge slab of petrified wood. From there we got on Rt. 12 to Yakima where they grow hops for the beer industry and those delicious sweet cherries. It was impossible to pass up a fruit stand without buying cherries.
We then got on Rt. 82 and on to Umatilla on the Columbia River. We were geared up for Lewis & Clark and their travels. We continued to Pendleton, Oregon and Walla Walla, Washington on Rt. 11 as we had never been to Oregon before. Catching Rt. 12 at Walla Walla we drove to Lewiston, Idaho. That Columbia River was a grand style river, wide with straight banks, resembling a river that had been dug.
We continued on Rt. 12 to Missoula, Montana across the Lolo Pass on the Continental Divide, made famous by Lewis and Clark, and saw the actual roads traveled with Sacajawea and party.
We took in a gun show at Stevensville, Montana on Rt. 93. At Salmon, Idaho we took Rt. 28 and then Rt. 20 to the town of West Yellowstone, Montana. We camped at a familiar campsite in Gardiner, Montana.
We stopped in to see Old Faithful blow her top. We had been in Yellowstone a few times before so we promptly headed south to the Tetons on Rt. 287/26 to Ft. Washakie in the Wind River Indian Reservation, named after the Indian chief Washakie. We also visited the grave of Sacajawea.
At Lander, Wyoming we took Rt. 287 to Jeffery City, where we found a campground where we were the only ones there. Next morning we continued on to Muddy Gap where we hit Rt. 220 to Casper. Then Rt. 25 to Guernsey, Wyo. There we got on Rt. 26, visiting the site of the Fort Laramie Treaty with the Indians. Staying on Rt. 26 until we got to Ogallala, Nebraska.
From Ogallala we took Rt. 61 to Imperial, Nebraska, then Rt. 6 to McCook. Then Rt. 83 to Rt. 23 to Rt. I-70, then headed east to Salina, Kansas. We stopped there a day to visit relatives. We got home the next day by I-70. Mileage: 47668. Our trip is over. I’m tired of driving. We need a new camper. The roads in Alaska ruined it. I have to get packed to go back to Wyoming for my antelope hunt. Didn’t I say I was tired?