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.

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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.

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Wild pony roaming the grounds of Fort Simcoe

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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.

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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.

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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.

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Palouse Falls – apparently the official waterfall of the state of Washington.
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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.

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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.

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

 

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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!

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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.

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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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