Travels! Orcas Island, Part One

Ohhh I’m not sure that I have ever been this excited for a blog post, honestly. I had planned to make this one long post, but soon realized that there was so much to talk about, it’d be best to split this bad Larry up into 2 posts. I also took far too many photos to squeeze into one post, so there it is.

This was one of those trips that left me feeling so happy and reminded me of how wonderful life can really be… One of those trips that could not have come at a better time for me. To be forced to unplug (in that we literally had no service at our campsite) was so nice. No Facebook, no twitter, just relaxing by a lake with my husband and some of our favorite friends (and a whole bunch of dogs, too!)… While I did check email and post a few photos of the day to Facebook when we were in the nearby town of Eastsound, I kept my iPhone usage pretty strict to only taking photos. Anyway, let’s go back to Thursday, where our trip began bright and early…

We woke up at around 5:30, with the car completely packed, our epic playlist ready to roll, two happy doggies in tow, and headed over to Bruce and Amy’s, who were of course joining us for the trip as it has become tradition that we camp on Orcas Island with them every summer (this would be trip number 3). We made our way over to Starbucks for some much-needed coffee, then headed up north to Anacortes where the ferry terminal is.

I have to say, I love road trips. I love listening to music with Matt, talking about our excitement for our trip, I love holding onto Milo has he sits in my lap and breathes in the fresh air whenever I put the window down for him, I love looking back at Anya laying in the back seat… Nothing beats good music, good company, and the excitement of a little vacation from work.

After around a 2 hour drive, we made it to Anacortes and stopped at the local Safeway, where we tried on some fabulous hats on our way out. We then drove over to the ferry terminal, being some of the first people there, and promptly took our dogs down to the beach for a walk… It may/may not have ended up being a little family photo shoot, but I couldn’t help it!

After burning a few hours between the beach and then hanging out in our cars while we waited, we finally loaded and headed upstairs to the main sitting area to play some Bananagrams. Best game to play on a ferry ride, I tell ya.

We eventually made our way out to the front of the ferry, which was cold as heck. Of course we took dorky photos and didn’t last very long until we decided to go back inside.

After a stop at Lopez Island, we finally arrived at Orcas Island. Ohhhh how I missed this beautiful little island. For those of you who don’t know, Orcas Island is part of the San Juan Islands in the northwest part of the state of Washington. The islands are absolutely beautiful, and while I’ve spent a lot of time on the main island, Orcas Island is my favorite. It is quiet, the views are breathtaking, and the people are delightful. Matt and I dream about living here one day, perhaps owning a bookstore or coffee shop…

Anyway, we made our way to Eastsound, which is the cute little town on the way to our campsite. This town has lots of cute locally-owned stores and restaurants, and is home to one of my favorite farmer’s markets (more on that later). We stopped by the local grocery store to grab a few items, then went on our way to our campsite at Moran State Park to set up and get settled in.

After checking in (where the girl actually remembered Matt from last summer’s trip, haha), we drove over to campsite 8. Now I should preface this with the fact that campsite 8 is the most popular site in the entire state park. It is so popular that you literally need to book it 9 months in advance, and even then you’re lucky to beat out other people who are online at the same time as you, trying to get this site. So yes, back in October I got online right at midnight on the dot and booked site 8 for us to enjoy.

As we approached the site, I was hoping that this really was worth all the hype… And I was not disappointed. The site is right on Cascade Lake, with it’s own private beach, beautiful view of the lake, and tons of space. We all looked each other with excitement over the fact that this would be our home for the next few days, and began to set up the tents, chairs, etc.

After setting up (and losing my phone during this process, only to find it UNDER our tent a few hours later, ha), we relaxed for a few before Amy and I decided to go for a swim. Sure it was maybe 64 degrees outside, but the water wasn’t nearly as cold as we thought it’d be, and the doggies wanted to go in, so we joined them. We ended up swimming over to a nearby dock, talking about anything and everything. One of my favorite parts of the whole trip was swimming and talking, enjoying the sun hitting our faces as we doggy-paddled our way over (haha, best way to have a conversation while swimming), and waving back as Matt and Bruce became little specks in the distance.

We eventually made our way back to our site and little beach, got changed and made some dinner. This trip was a vacation and Matt and I had agreed that any vacation we take means we’re allowed to have whatever we want. So did I eat Costco hot dogs? Heck yes I did. And were they delicious? Obviously.

The dogs were all pooped from a long day of traveling, and we took it easy that night, playing Bohnanza, sitting by the fire, joking around and snuggling the pugs (no seriously, between Milo and Beefcake, those two needed some serious snuggling because of how cold they got, haha, talk about high maintenance dogs.)

Okay, this is where Part One ends. Part Two will include the best meal I’ve ever eaten, more swimming (and a possible sighting of Nessie?!), games, relaxing, a trip to the Eastsound farmer’s market, and a series of photos depicting the many creepy faces of Matt from this trip. Now if that isn’t a reason to read Part Two, I don’t know what is.

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4 Comments

Filed under Photography, Travel, Weekend

4 responses to “Travels! Orcas Island, Part One

  1. Meg

    Look at that cute dog butt :3

  2. Amy

    LOVE IT! 🙂 Seriously can’t wait until the next camping trip! I had an awesome time too! I really enjoyed the swimming and talking too Danielle! I loved the bonding time! It was great! 🙂 Bruce and I are truly blessed to have friends like you and Matt. It was such a wonderful trip. I wish the whole summer could just be camping with you guys there!

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