“No man is brave that has never walked a hundred miles. If you want to know the truth of who you are, walk until not a person knows your name. Travel is the great leveler, the great teacher, bitter as medicine, crueler than mirror-glass. A long stretch of road will teach you more about yourself than a hundred years of quiet introspection.

Patrick Rothfuss

The Wise Man’s Fear

Today we find ourselves in the midst of numerous wildfires burning in Oregon and California. The sky has turned brown with ash from the Cedar Creek fire two hundred kilometres to the east from where we’re presently staying in Newport, Oregon, and for the first time since we left Ontario we are concerned about our present course.

Our plan at the moment is to keep heading south along Highway 101 and keep to the coast of Oregon and into California. The fires aren’t something we have any control over so we’ll just have to roll with it and hope for the best. It’s heartbreaking to see so much destruction happening all around us. Two nights ago it seemed like firetruck sirens sounded through the entire night.

So, what have we been up to? Once we entered the United States we spent a few nights camping on a ranch near Springdale then moved on to a motel in Davenport. That motel, call the Black Bear Motel, was one of the cooler motels you’ll find anywhere. It had an old western style and our room was done in an old pioneer fashion while the entire place was full of antiques from the old west.

We also had the chance to see a rodeo while in Davenport, Washington, and it was something I’ve never seen before. Picked up an Indian Taco there that was tasty.

Next we stayed at a HipCamp near Leavenworth that couldn’t have been better. It was simply amazing and a quick walk from the town centre. Leavenworth, Washington, was unusual, a town styled in a Bavarian theme so it looked like something out of the Swiss Alps even though it has nothing to do with Bavaria or Switzerland.

Every business in town used the same font, style of architecture, and even had employees dressed up to look like they work in a German pub. One night we heard a tourist tell a waiter she picked up his Bavarian accent that he obviously didn’t have. Still, it was a cool place to visit and the pub food there was pretty good.

Then we moved on to a campground for a week by Randle, Washington. While driving we passed through a town called Packwood that was having a giant town wide flea market and once our camp was set up we headed back to look around. Tons of deals and stuff to see but we didn’t buy anything except lunch and a coffee.

First time in my life I saw civilians walking around with guns strapped to their belts for no real reason but that’s the reality in America these days.

The campground was called the Celtic Elk and it had a small farm with alpacas and some goats on the property. It was run by a wonderful woman named Mary and her husband Brett, who’s from Alberta. She baked use Huckleberry muffins!

Everyone we’ve met so far on our trip has been kind to us. The world is a lot smaller than we think.

We’re both healthy and doing good. Falling into a groove on the road has been nice and I’m so proud of us both for coming this far.

See you on the road friends.