A year ago my hubby and I escaped the dreary valley inversion we call winter for a weekend over on the Washington coast - stepping outside our usual destination for another of the Olympic National Park Lodges - Lake Quinault. We had a lovely weekend and talked how we wanted to share this lakeside haven with our family.
In October I received an email invitation offering a special rate for multiple nights or multiple rooms. I contacted our family and said "if we planned something in February which weekend would work best?" Working around my Friday work responsibilities and an upcoming lacrosse season we were very excited to pick the first weekend of February for our family get-away to the Washington Coast.
We created a fun travel brochure to share with everyone for Christmas, offering details of Lake Quinault Lodge and travel options. We knew going into the planning this was crazy - 20 hours on the road for one night - but we really wanted to show our family this special place we found. But just in case we offered receipt and reservation information in case someone had to make changes. Things happen - better to give them a chance at a weekend that works best.
The week of our departure had arrived and plans were secure. Erin, Chris and Calder were heading out after Chris did a quick check at work and staying over with Calder's Madrina Tara in Portland. K(squared) were taking the day off the explore Portland. Matt, Brit and Mr. T were driving over with us after our work day ended.
Unfortunately I woke up Friday morning with a raging head and chest cold. I managed to work until noon and came home to sleep until Mike woke me saying Matt was off work and ready to go. While I napped Karissa had texted to say they broke down just west of Hermiston, OR. Fortunately Erin, Chris and Mr. C were an hour behind them and able to lend assistance. After antifreeze, phone calls and more waiting, Krieg and Karissa's vehicle was carried away to Hermiston on the back of a tow truck and their belongings were loaded into the Murray's rental car. All ended up spending the evening with Tara, having an early celebration for Mr. C's first birthday. Our own journey was uneventful though we drove through falling snow through both passes to Cascade Locks and our own evening's destination.
|Mr. T took up residence in his 3rd row.|
|The bridge at Cascade Locks.|
|Our usual resting place... trains and river traffic kept Mr. T entertained in the morning.|
|In the entryway of the Deli there is a lovely memorial created in honor of Mike's oldest son Rex who left us in 2008. |
|Lake Quinault Lodge, Amanda Park, WA|
|The view from our room.|
|Mr. C is WALKING - perpetual motion and TURBO charged!|
|Mr. T - always knows when he has returned to his birth state. He says he is 'home'.|
|Checked into our room and looking forward to the next few hours with our family.|
|Krieg and Karissa|
We wanted to drive the additional 30 minutes up to Kalaloch, enjoy the sunset on the beach and have dinner at Kalaloch Lodge. What could be better?
|Happy to be on the beach again|
|(Sigh) - my family on the beach together doing what we love.|
|The combination of low tide and the sunset created some great reflectivity in the wet sand.|
|Chris, Erin and Mr. C.|
|Mr. C enjoyed his second trip to the coast in his first year.|
|We were definitely enjoying ourselves. A side note: despite how bundled up we are, the temperatures were mild and for the first time I can recall in many visits, there was no wind.|
|Britnee and Matthew|
|Mr. T found a sand dollar with the help of Whytee (Chris).|
|We enjoyed a pleasant leisurely meal inside the Lodge together.|
There are several lodging options at Lake Quinault Lodge. Our first visit we stayed in a "Fireside Room". This visit we were in the "Lakeside Rooms". Another option is inside the historic Lodge itself as well as the "Boathouse". Each type of room offers different options for everyone.
|View of Lake Quinault from the lake.|
|Our family inside the lodge.|
Inside the main lodge there are game tables set up for chess and checkers. There is an armoire filled with puzzles and games. The restaurant is just off the sitting room which also includes a nice bar area for evening cocktails in front of a roaring fire. During our first visit Mike and I enjoyed a drink in the comfy leather chairs, while others around us read their books and visited.
The night we arrived there was a small wedding taking place in the lodge. Sunday morning the wedding party was seated for breakfast before we were. By the time we were seated they larger party had yet to be served so we opted to load our cars and head on down the road as we knew those heading for Boise would want to get started instead of wait.
Driving through Aberdeen, the kids discovered a cute little restaurant for breakfast. Yep - It was called (ready for this?) Moo Moo Oink Oink Cluck Cluck Restaurant. It has been open only six months. The five members of our family in the first car took up two tables with two remaining chairs. Our five opted for a nearby booth which enabled us to still chat as we watched the local TV channel flood the airways with Seattle Seahawks news and Super Bowl preparations.