January Camping

This month we went back to Rainbow Falls State Park. We had camped there April 2015. This was a rainy weekend just like last January at Grayland. We had three new people join us for the weekend. A couple, Jaques and Jan and their two Scotty dogs from Thorp just over the pass in Eastern WA and Mike and his two dogs from Bellingham.

Mike and Oliver

Mike & Oliver enjoying the campfire.

We arrived around 9:30 and Jane had already secured the group site. We were the only ones in the campground. B and I made paninis for dinner and shared a lovely adult malted beverage before hitting the sack.

The next morning we awoke refreshed from sleeping in to more rain. Breakfast was soon on the agenda and consumed in record time. Our new friends Jaques and Jan went off rock hounding. B and Dug wanted to head to the other side of the park for some Geocaching. Mike and Jane joined them and I held up the fort. I attempted to read and knit but  was tired and napped while they were gone.

When B returned we walked over to the falls which were raging more than our last trip.

B at Rainbow Falls

We headed back to camp to discover a relic from the past being taken back by nature.

Phone Booth

Our potluck was another for the record books. We brought beef stew we had cooked in our crock pot all day Friday. There was orzo salad, meatballs and beans, fruit salad and pie!

We soon settled around the fire with adult beverages and got to know out new friends. We were all pretty tired and Dug didn’t make it long.

Dug is Tired

In fact, none of us made it past ten. The next morning was a little better rain wise. After breakfast we packed up to head out for some more Geocaching. Jaques and Jan headed back over the pass and Mike also headed home.

Jane’s dog Keiko had a lot of fun running around but she got really dirty. Second bath of the weekend.

Keiko Bathwater

Oliver in Mike’s bus.

Oliver in Mikes Bus

B and I wanted to get two more state park caches this weekend. First stop was Ike Kinswa State Park on Mayfield Lake which is a reservoir established by the construction of Mayfield Dam. The park was renamed from Mayfield Lake to Ike Kinswa in honor of Ike Kinswa, a well-respected Cowlitz Indian who lived along the shores of the rivers’ confluence.


B, Jane & Dug with Gus and Sausage

The trail at Ike Kinswa was relatively easy but had large muddy puddles in places. We found three other caches on the trail to the state park one and signed the log for our 71st state park cache.

Next stop was Millersylvania State Park originally called Miller’s Glade for the previous owners of the property, the Miller family who purchased it from the original homesteader, Squire Lathum in 1855. Miller’s family gave the property to the state in 1921, stipulating that the land must forever be used as a park.

The buildings at the park were constructed in 1935 almost entirely by hand by the Civilian Conservation Corps. A narrow-gauge railroad, and several skid roads used in the 1800s by the logging industry, remain on park grounds. You can still see notch scars in stumps of trees where springboards supported loggers.

Beej at Park

We found the state park cache [our 72nd] pretty quickly and headed over to the entrance for a couple more. On our way we came across these Menonites. They were taking a photo of out three busses. We should have stopped for a real photo opp.


It was getting dark and we were getting hungry so we headed out to a favorite dinner spot, Engine House No. 9. We were home by 9:30 and in bed shortly after unpacking the bus.


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