Tillamook Forest and Mt Rainier
Since we’ve been on the road, our first extended stay was in the Tillamook Forest in Oregon, on the river Trask. Omaha friends, I wish you could know the bliss of a forest waterhole in the height of summer. Diving under a waterfall, bringing your body temperature right down and then laying on a boulder in the sun. Your cheek pressed against its smooth surface. We were not tourists in the Tillamook. We camped by the same waterhole for eight days and seven nights without moving - we didn’t even go on a walk. Locals came and went. An overweight family who was very loud. Lumberjacks with suspender tan lines drinking busch light and diving into shallow water. A few fishermen, a few drunk 20 somethings. We came to feel like locals, to know the place if even just that spot.

And we got to know each other again too. I mean we didn’t have cell phone service, let alone wifi. What else was there to do except gawk at each others faces? And while we still had booze, there were a quite a few self congratulatory toasts in the evening.

Then we slowly made it to Mt Rainier. I love that place. The moment we first saw here was like a perfectly planned reveal in a burlesque performance. I had heard that the first moment you lay eyes on the mountain was a memory you would forever cherish (expectation). We drove around a huge pass and couldn’t see her (first tease). We drove all the way to paradise, got out and there was nothing but cloud (second tease). We spent the night at Paradise, and woke up early the next morning. Bluebird sky, the sun rising and Mount Rainier smack in our faces. Shiver.