Weekly Newsletter – Mashley’s Adventures – 1 Year Adventureversary!

(Pictures are all available in an album in FaceBook.)

Current Location: Bremerton, Washington

It’s opener, out there, in the wide, open air.
~ Dr. Seuss, Oh, The Places You’ll Go!

It was certainly sad to drop Norma (Ashley’s mom) off at the airport Wednesday morning. Everyone had a blast while she was here… so much fun we had to take a day to recover. 😀

Thursday, however, marked our 1st adventureversary. One year traveling in the RV! To celebrate, we loaded the mountain bikes into the truck and headed into the nearby mountains for, what else? An adventure! We drove to the wash-out in the road and parked the truck before hopping on the bicycles for the ride up the remainder of the road to the trail head in the Dosewallips area of Olympic National Park.

Though a leisurely day hike had been recommended, we decided to honor the day with the hardest hike we could find, the trail up to Lake Constance. Here are a few quotes from the guide book:

  • The steepest trail in Olympic National Park leads to an emerald lake under the monsterous cliffs of Mount Constance, setting a scene almost worth the killer climb.
  • The trail goes steeply through the forest for 1.1 miles before becoming slightly less steep. Hikers who call this short section flat are suffering from delusions brought on by the trail.
  • Just past a huge rock the trail steepens and follows a traverse across the cliff that mountaineers might call interesting. This is a technical term that means if you slip you could break something vital to your health and well-being.

We didn’t read any of these descriptions until we returned from the hike, but completely agreed with all of them. There was a lot of scrambling, bouldering, and slipping, but it was amazingly fun and nice to have the challenge of a more technical hike.

After gaining 900 feet while biking to the trail head, the trail itself climbs 3,700 feet in 2 miles. It was steep, but the trail runs parallel to a creek so we enjoyed the seranade of flowing water and views of waterfalls as we hiked. Behind us we caught glimpses of snow-covered peaks when the clouds revealed them. We saw no one after hopping on the bicycles and left the first footprints in the snow drifts around the blue, blue, blue lake. It was breathtakingly beautiful and our only regret is that we couldn’t stay longer.

It seemed quite an apt celebration of what has been an amazing year. Waking in our cozy RV home, bike riding, hiking, and enjoying a meal on the trail next to a splashing waterfall.

  • 1 new trail hiked
  • 30-ish elk crossing the road in front of us
  • 375 days since moving into the RV, and counting….

It’s been an amazing year. We’ve seen some beautiful and amazing sights, learned more about the country we live in, family, friends, each other, and ourselves. Our relationships have grown and we are a stronger couple than ever before. We can’t imagine a life other than the one we’ve been living and are so thankful for the experiences we’ve shared.

Our adventures aren’t always grand excursions. This week also found us experiencing a little of the local culture on Friday with the Bremerton Art Walk. We toured around downtown and visited many of the local business and art galleries where we were able to check out some local art and music while enjoying some snacks. We even got to print our own June calenders using a letterpress at the Bremerton Letterpress Co. Yesterday was also a fun filled day with Ashley’s sister, where we enjoyed a day swimming and rope swinging at a nicely hidden forest lake.

    Lessons Learned:

  • As always, the harder the hike the more we appreciate the views at the end.
  • We couldn’t have done this year’s adventure without the support of family and friends.
  • An adventure’s an adventure, no matter how small.

2015 was the year of the pedal and 2016 is set to be the year of the boot. We loved the hike up to Lake Constance, have an upcoming 3-day backpacking trip this weekend, another hike planned in a few weeks to Royal Lake, the excursion into Glacier National Park in August, and a whole list of other trails to explore while in the area. We do love the diversity and range of options available within a short distance of our home base here in the Kitsap Penninsula.

Until next week,

Matthew & Ashley

P.S. – Ashley’s been updating and adding to our website. Feel free to go poke around! We also added an Adventure-Some FaceBook page where you can see all of our pictures (even if you don’t have an account).