Adventure - Page 2
24 DAYS ON THE ROAD
Saturday the weather was a little cooler; it seemed to have become autumn overnight, and Sunday was cold and rainy. I had heard it was hotter in Montana. Good I thought, I could use an Indian Summer. (Actually that year anybody's summer would have been just fine with me.)
After washing the previous night's birthday cake frosting-covered plates in the bathroom sink, Leslie and I went our separate ways, she back to Portland, and I farther along my path. At 8:45am, all the other teardroppers, a bunch of noisy early birds, were already gone. Thankful it was Sunday, I whizzed through Seattle in the rain.
Arrived at Boundary Bay Brewing Company in Bellingham, Washington, to be greeted with beer and lunch by my friend and fellow brewer, Skip Madsen, and his wife Sue. After the requisite brewery tour, we caravanned to Deming, Washington, home of Sandy and Vicky Savage's North Fork Brewery and Shrine. They call it a shrine because of Sandy's incredible collection of American breweriana. My favorite among their obscure, diverse and mint-condition collection was an electric Rainier Brewing sign that continually changed, showing a 3-dimensional Mt. Rainier throughout the day, beginning with an orange-pink sunrise glow. And of course, once again the taps were flowing and the pizza dough was flying.
That night, Sandy offered me a place to sleep inside, and teasingly asked if he and Vicky could sleep in the teardrop instead of me. I declined and said, "No, I'm sleeping in there every night of my trip, it's part of the pilgrimage."
After 24 hours with the Savages, including a fabulous hike on a deer path to Race Horse Falls, I departed to make a little time along spectacular Hwy 20. I wanted to see North Cascades National Park before dark. Unfortunately, the weather had changed to winter so the mountains were socked in with clouds, but what I could see was so ruggedly beautiful that I swore I must come back someday. The wild swollen Skagit River was a milky green color, the result of glaciers grinding rock into a water-suspended glacial flour. This particular gem in America's crown is one of the most spectacular, remote and inaccessible, and one of the most overlooked of all the National Parks. Be sure to dress for all types of weather here, including rain of course.
Driving beyond North Cascades, I arrived in Winthrop, Washington, a little re-invented wild west theme town complete with wooden sidewalks and swinging saloon doors, just as the sun set at about 8:30 pm. Camped at Perrygin Lake State Park near town.
Tuesday dawned bright, sunny, and cold. Walked around Winthrop, population 350, and bought a postcard. Checked in at the local brewery, which is sited in a pseudo "one room little red school house" built in the 1970's. Owner and brewer Dan Yingling had a great collection of antique cigarette lighters which lined one entire pub wall, and the unusual decor of hundreds of coasters and business cards with lipstick kisses tacked up on another wall. Admiring fans of his beers, no doubt.
Filled up the tank, bought ice, and continued out of town on Hwy 20. That road must be the most beautiful way to cross Washington State; from rain forest, to high desert, to ranch land, to several small mountain ranges. As I crossed the border into Idaho, the mountains threatened to cloud up a little, but it was time to stop in Sandpoint and head inside for... a beer, what else.
here to go to1999 Teardrop Adventure Page 3.
The story is 16 short pages total. You can jump to other sections of the story here:
1 - Departure
And here are some recipes: