Monday, September 3, 2012

No Need to Worry About Raccoons

For my last night camping I was in the Hiker/Biker site at Potlatch sandwiched between a large group of people (I mentioned in the last post, they had 8 sites). Well, nothing like being in the middle of a party and not being invited! They were eating dinner until around 10:00, then they had the music cranked up and were laughing and generally being loud until, the last time I looked at my watch, about 2:00. Fortunately for me, I still had the earplugs I had gotten when I went to the World Parrot Refuge. They came in very handy! At least I didn't have to worry about any raccoons trying to get into my food (too much action happening). Last time Carol and I were there, a very bold raccoon wanted to see what we were having for dinner. I had to chase him off twice. When I got up in the morning, I didn't feel compelled to be quiet.

I was on the road by 8:20. It was pretty chilly and very foggy. Just when I'd think the fog was burning off, I'd come into more even heavier fog. It did burn off, but remained overcast until I got to Olympia. Then the sun was shining for the remaining 12 miles home.

I made it home by 12:30. All my stuff is now cleaned and put away until the next trip.

Total miles ridden was 634. Total miles travelled was far more. I had 19 boat rides that included ferries of all sizes and a passenger freighter. All the boat rides were enjoyable, but it was sometimes not so enjoyable being tied to the ferry schedule (especially on the 5 boat ride day). The days where I didn't have to catch a boat were the most relaxing. Because I wanted to make sure I was at a ferry terminal in time, but not knowing exactly how much time it would take me, I spent alot of time waiting at ferry terminals. Usually, that was no big deal as it gave me the opportunity to meet more people. I generally seemed to always find someone to talk to while I was waiting.

My CouchSurfing hosts (Chris and Nathan in Port Alberni and the Conovers in Anacortes) were, as always, fabulous. I have yet to have a bad CS experience. I was very happy to get to connect again with Diane on Pender Island (met her in New Zealand). We could have talked for many more hours!

I also enjoyed all the people I met while camping. I'm thankful to Val for sharing her campsite with me at Sproat Lake. I really enjoyed meeting the two car camping families and their kids as well as Boyd and Mary Ann at Welcome Bay Farm. I look forward to keeping in touch with Claire, Guy, and Lucy (and their little dog Bijou) who I also met at Welcome Bay.

Overall, I had fabulous weather and NO Mosquitos! My tent was dry every morning except the first and last mornings. In general, the Provincial Parks were okay, but they could use some showers and flush toilets (except Rathtrevor which had both). The US State Parks are much better equipped in that regard. My favorite Canada campsite was at Welcome Bay Farm. Favorite US campsite was at San Juan County Park on San Juan Island. Favorite boat ride is a tie between the Frances Barkley to Ucluelet and the cute little ferry to Newcastle Island. One was the longest boat ride (5 hours) and the other the shortest (10 minutes).

The one flat tire came, appropriately, from a fish hook. Otherwise, I had no other mechanical issues.

All in all, I give the Bike and Boats Tour a Thumbs Up!

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