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June 26, 2016

On to Mt Rainier via Deshutes River Rec Area

Despite a most welcome invitation from Jim and Gayle of Life’s Little Adventures to join them for a beer in Bend, OR we continued our pace across Oregon.  Arriving at the Columbia River, it was too windy to dry camp at Rufus, OR … but just down the road is the Deshutes River Recreation Area.  We snagged site #11 a very nice site overlooking the river.

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It is $22 for water/electric in a well maintained park.  However there is no dump station, but we’'ll be here again.  Just the other side of the Columbia River is Maryhill State Park and Peach Beach.
We took a morning hike up to Ferry Springs, taking the Middle Trail to Ferry Springs Trail and returning the River Trail.  The only shade is on the River Trail, plan accordingly.
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Dogs on leash are permitted, however with the long traverses through fields of foxtail grasses and thistles I’d not recommend at the time we went.
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Ferry Springs itself is dense vegetation and a bit of rockhopping to cross.  The spring creates a lush green belt down Ferry Canyon.
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Looking down the Deshutes River is the confluence with the Columbia River.
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Next stop was in Yakima to pick up groceries and supplies.  A bit of shopping with Walmart and Target both easy stops with big parking lots.  We’re heading to Mt Rainier for a few days where the family will gather while one of our favorite nieces and husband begin the climb to the top.

The hookups at Suntides RV Park provide a chance to clean, dump and refill.  The hookups are a bit strange in that a center utility island provides 2 sites.  Hence the RVs are parked nose-to-tail.  Worked great for us with an end site.  And if there’s time for golf ... it’s right there.
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Arrived amidst overcast at Mt Rainier, with the kids already on the mountain.  Overcast turned to rain at night into a rainier morning.  They trained a prepared well, but thinking Florida to 14000’ or tropics to glacial is not an easy adjustment. 

Our fist hike in the park is the Pleasant Valley Loop TR999.  It is multi-day loop, or an out-n-back., yup we did an out-n-back!  Nice trail but check out the ant hill!
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My younger brother came over from Tacoma to join us with his Red Cross Disaster Supplies Pack!  Now that’s a perfect survival kit!
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Our son and family had already planned to be here with their revitalized Coleman pop-up camper.  They did a really great job of adding a new life to this 1994 unit.
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The campground is along the American River with a few short trails.  A nice little lean-too fort is along the river for some fun play time.
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Games were played – Jm won!
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Hikes taken – Against G’pa’s advice Jm crosses with a bit of courage from mom!  A double ant hill is along this section of the loop.
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Yup the kids are up there somewhere, but the weather is good now and bet they are having a good time.
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The boys!
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Campground Reviews:
Deshutes River Recreation Area:  $22 w/ water electric.  No limit hot showers.  Good cell service.  On the river with large maintained greenbelt and miles of trails.  Lacks a dump station.
Sun Tides RV Park: $41 with unless Internet, but good laundry $1/$1.25.  Showers tied to laundry so very hot/cold as the washing machines kick in.  Golf next door.   Good cell service. 

Big hop - next to the Olympic Peninsula ….
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