Wacky Wanderers

exploring on the road as a family

Olympic Peninsula Trip Days 9-10: Sol Duc Campground and Hot Springs

Sol Duc Campground was our first campsite in this trip where we didn’t have luxuries such as electricity and free dump and fill-up options for Wobbles (our camper). The draw to this particular campground was the Sol Duc Hot Springs close by.  The campground was in a wonderful tall growth forest which was beautiful!  This is what we had lacked thus far on this trip, the woods! 

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Electrical system upgrade: Phase II (the van)

Our GTRV camper van came fresh from Craigslist with two open cell lead acid deep cycle house batteries installed in a sealed battery box in the rear of the van (and vented to the outside).  These two batteries provided roughly 100 amp-hours of capacity.  In this phase of the electrical system upgrades, we’re going to replace these two batteries with lithium batteries, which will double the capacity to 200 amp-hours and reduce the weight from about 100 pounds to 60 pounds (that might not sound like much, but since we’re just about at the van’s weight capacity when we are towing Wobbles (the Airstream), every pound is important to us.  We’ll also be adding a battery monitor (the same one we installed in the Airstream).

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Olympic Peninsula Trip Days 7-8: KOA, Hurricane Ridge & Olympic Game Farm

I know!  We stayed at a KOA.  I can only half believe I am admitting this to the public.  Don’t get me wrong, KOA’s are not bad places to stay, however, I don’t really consider them “camping” spots either.  They are full of luxuries that do not go under my definition of camping.  At a KOA that Justin and I once stayed at we were forced to listen to a horrific Elvis impersonator painfully sing who-knows-what being blasted from loud speakers throughout the park.  It was enough to make someone’s ears bleed.  As you can guess, I was a bit skeptical having this on our list of stops but we were due for a clean load of laundry.  Truth be told, it was a great stay!

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Olympic Peninsula Trip Days 3-6: Fort Worden State Park & Port Townsend

For the second stop on our 2 week Olympic Peninsula trip we drove 1 hour from Dosewallips State Park up to Fort Worden State Park in Port Townsend.  Since it was a Monday, we didn’t make reservations and assumed we’d have no problem finding a site.  As it turned out when we arrived there were only 2 sites available for the 4-day stretch that we wanted to stay (at-least at the more popular beach campground), so we considered ourselves lucky to have snagged one!  We loved Fort Worden and the surrounding Port Townsend– there was so much to explore that we couldn’t see it all in our 4 day visit.

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Staying connected while on the road

During short weekend camping trips, not having a phone or internet connection can actually be part of the pleasure of getting away from the hustle and bustle of daily life.  However, for longer trips staying connected is essential for communications, navigation, planning, etc.  For our travels, I researched various options (WiFi, cellular & satellite).  In this post I’ll tell you what we chose and why.

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Olympic Peninsula Trip Days 1-2: Dosewallips State Park

We’ve started our next “test trip” with the girls in our new camping rig, “Wobbles” the Airstream and “Dimes” the van (which has recently been given this name by our 4-year-old).  We’re exploring the Olympic Peninsula and Olympic National park for 2+ weeks.  Since our girls don’t make driving long distances particularly easy or pleasant, we’re trying to break up the drives as much as possible.  Therefore, we reserved the last available campsite at Dosewallips State Park, part way up the peninsula,  in order break up our drive up to the North-Eastern corner of the peninsula. 

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