Road report #5 – SE Washington to Joseph, OR

I departed the Methow Valley on 9/20 and based on a tip from a friend, headed to check out the town of Tieton, WA.  It’s become a hub of artistic activity and I was curious to check out the scene.  But not much goes on in Tieton midweek apparently and I found a very tiny, quiet town.  I pushed on and found camping off Route 12 outside of Naches, WA at Windy Point Campground and Roo and I passed an uneventful evening along the Naches River.

Windy Point Campground along the Naches River.

9/21 I pushed off to check out Fort Simcoe.  I’m so glad I took the time.  Amazing scenery and remarkably well preserved historic buildings with wild ponies and bears roaming the grounds.


Wild pony roaming the grounds of Fort Simcoe


A sow and her cub roaming around Fort Simcoe

From Fort Simcoe, I set off for Waitsburg, WA and another night of camping at the Lewis and Clark Trail State Park.  Waitsburg was adorable but pretty quiet.  I very nice German couple, Klaus and Helga, came over to complement Greta and when they found out I had spent some time in Germany, we spent about a 1/2 hour speaking in broken German swapping travel stories. They were SO excited about my road trip adventure.  ‘Ganz Toll! Ganz Toll!’ (So cool! So cool!) exclaimed Klaus over and over.

Klaus and Helga in Waitsburg, WA

After a beer and burger at the Laht Neppur Brewing Co., Roo and I found a nice little campsite at the state park and settled in and had a nice quiet evening.  We hiked around a bit and played along the banks of the Touchet River and I marveled at the gigantic pines scattered throughout the campground.

Roo in front of big old pine trees.

9/22 Roo and I pushed off towards the Clarkston, WA/Lewiston, OR area.  Along the way, I saw a sign for Palouse Falls and decided to follow my nose.  So glad I did.  The scenery was spectacular.

Palouse Falls – apparently the official waterfall of the state of Washington.
View from Palouse Falls State Park

I passed through Clarkston and Lewiston and pushed onto Field Springs State Park, outside of Anatone, WA along Rte 129.   It was SO quiet and Roo and I enjoyed a great hike that evening and had the trails all to ourselves.   I was blown away by the vistas.

View from Puffer Butte at Field Springs State Park.

9/23 Roo and I headed towards Jospeh, OR.   The stretch of Rte 129/Rte 3 that I drove that morning was AMAZING, windy with spectacular vistas. The road essentially follows a section of the historic New Perce Trail.  Numerous historic markers along the route are reminders of the disgraceful treatment of Native Americans.

Rte 129/Rte 3 in SE WA, NE OR.


Joseph Canyon Overlook

Rolled into Joseph, OR and I was smitten!  Adorable hub of art and culture with Lake Wallowa and the Wallowa Mountains as its backdrop.  My kind of town!


Roo and I camped at Lake Wallowa and hiked around during the day.  We found Kokanee salmon spawning in the river.  What a cool surprise!

Enjoyed a couple of yummy beers at Embers Brewhouse and ran into a fellow vanagon owner.

Nice racks!


And now it’s the morning of 9/24 and Roo and I are headed out Rte 39 into the Eagle Cap Wilderness to see if we can find a campsite along the Imnaha River.    More updates in a few days, once we’re back in internet and cell phone range.


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