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Open Roads Forum  >  Truck Campers

 > AlaskaTrip2017-Larson'sEpicAdventureTR-(Part 6)FinalEpisode

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GpnAZ

Phoenix

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Posted: 02/14/18 08:31pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Writing the final episode for our Alaska trip was how we felt when we left Alaska, we had seen so many awesome sights and had the experience of our life but we were ready to head home.

August 12 –
We left Prince Rupert early, stopping at Tim Horton’s for coffee and breakfast sandwiches on the way out of town. We had beautiful scenery with the mountains and rivers and lakes until Smithers where the smoke really got heavy from all the wildfires burning. By 5:30 pm it was so smoky it was dark outside.

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We arrived in Prince George and decided to stay in our camper in the Casino parking lot that evening. Our campsites for the next 3 or 4 nights were all inaccessible by highway because of the wildfires burning so we decided on another route to Vancouver. We end up taking Hwy 16 to Hwy 5 to Kamloops where we stay for the night, it’s been smoky and raining all day. We leave the next morning and it’s smoky for around 100 miles and then starts to clear up. We stop at a pretty little town named Hope for lunch and get to Vancouver late in the afternoon. We check into our campground and go out for dinner and back to the camper for the evening. The next morning we are up, eat breakfast and drive to Capilano Suspension Bridge. What a beautiful and interesting park with a 450’ suspension bridge and suspended walkways going all over plus a cliff walkway!

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We drove to downtown Vancouver, lots of traffic and narrow streets. We found a street to park the truck and camper on and walked to Flyover Canada so we could take turns riding the simulator ride. We had Peanut with us so we had to take the ride separately while the other one watched Peanut.

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The next day we get our domestic duties done in the morning and then head to Hard Rock Casino for lunch and so I can get my guitar pin. From there we drive to Granville, after driving through there several times looking for parking spots we drive about 3-4 blocks away where I find a spot on the street to park. We have halibut for lunch at the Farmer’s Market and walk around Granville, what a busy place!

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We decide to take the ferry to Victoria today instead of tomorrow and were able to get on the 6 pm ferry ride to Victoria, arriving in Victoria at 8 pm. We drive to our campground and after driving around find out it’s the wrong one and our campground is actually 50 miles away in Nanaimo. Both campgrounds had similar names which caused all the confusion. We arrived at camp around 10 pm, ate dinner and went to bed. The next day we hike the Cable Bay Trail and pick blackberries at the trailhead, after that we drive to Nanaimo and eat lunch and Sue shops while I photograph some of the old local churches.

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The next day we drive to Qualicum Falls stopping on the way in Parksville to see the sand sculptures on exhibit, they were very cool!

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It was a nice hike to upper and lower Qualicum Falls and very pretty! We stopped in different towns along the way back to camp, we really like this part of Vancouver Island.

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The next day we head to Victoria with our first stop being Butchart Gardens, it was beautiful with every imaginable flower. We ate lunch there and then drove to downtown Victoria where we hung out for a little bit and then checked into our campground.

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The next day we drive to take the tour of Craigdarroch Castle, pretty interesting place. We have some lunch and then drive to Sooke Potholes Provincial Park and walk along the Sookes River and then drive to Sookes and then back to the campground.



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The next day is our ferry ride to Port Angeles Washington. We drive to the Blackball Ferry in downtown Victoria and wait to board the ferry. Meanwhile the total solar eclipse is going on as we are driving onto the ferry at 10 am. The ferry had a lot of vehicles and people on it and we arrived in Port Angeles at 11:30 am going through U.S. Customs with no delays.

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We stop in Port Angeles for lunch and then drive to Hurricane Ridge in Olympic NP. We stop at 2 different visitor centers to read about the area and then hike to Sunrise Point.

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We drive back to Port Angeles to pick up some groceries and then drive to our Sol Duc campground, what a beautiful drive, it feels so good to be back in the lower 48 States again! We’re up early and drive to the Sol Duc Falls trailhead and hike to the Falls to photograph.

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We eat breakfast in the camper and then drive to Rialto Beach and let Peanut run a little.

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We drive over to La Push to check out the other sea stacks, taking a nap at First Beach waiting for the fog to subside and check into the campground in La Push after that.

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We then drove to Second Beach trailhead and hike to Second Beach where we spent an hour exploring and photographing, what a beautiful area!

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The next day we head to Olympia so Sue can take a drug test at LabCorp for a new job back at her old company, just because she wanted all the paperwork out of the way and be ready to go back to work when we get home to Phoenix. Sue does laundry while I get my haircut and then we head to Ike Kinswa State Park to camp for the night.
The next morning we head for Steptoe State Park, stopping in Yakima for lunch and diesel. We really enjoy the beautiful drive through the farmlands of Washington!

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We arrive at Steptoe Butte and make the drive to the top where we have a beautiful view but it’s awful windy! We find out there is no camping available so after photographing we decide to head to Palouse Falls State Park.

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We arrive at Palouse Falls SP only to find out there is no RV camping allowed, only tent camping. By this time it’s 10:30 pm and not knowing the area we decide to head to Lewiston Idaho and park in the parking lot at the local Casino. We arrive in Lewiston about 12:30 am and without further delay find a place to park and catch some sleep, thanks to Sue for driving this final leg of the day long journey! We’re up early the next morning and have breakfast at the Casino and then head for Boise. We drive the 95 to the 55 into Boise, what a beautiful drive although it was a little smoky along the way from the different wildfires!

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We found a campground in Boise to stay the night and were up the next morning and drove to Twin Falls where we stop to visit one of Sue’s relatives for a couple hours.

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After that we head to Wendover Nevada where we stay the night at a campground there and eat dinner and play some slots at the Casino next door. The next morning we drive to the Bonneville Speedway Salt Flats, I’ve always wanted to see the cars racing here but only got to see a few people camping out. I took a few pictures of the truck camper on the salt flats and we headed back to Wendover to have some breakfast at the Casino.

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Wendover reminded me of the old days of Las Vegas with cheap meals and loose slots! We head for Great Basin National Park stopping in Ely Nevada for lunch and diesel.

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We arrive at Great Basin NP and decide to camp in the highest campground at approximately 10,000 feet, so we make the climb towards Wheeler Peak, what a beautiful drive and the campground was in the middle of an Aspen forest!

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The next morning we are up early to make the drive to the Lehman Caves for a cave tour.

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Unfortunately our clocks end up being 1 hour off because we are close to two different time zones there and we decide to forego the cave tour for another time, we are getting anxious to see home! We drive through Utah and get to Jacob Lake Arizona where we camp for the night, it will be the last cool night we will see for a while! The next morning we are up early and stop at Jacob Lake Lodge for breakfast and we make the final leg of our EPIC ADVENTURE to HOME!!!

Vermillion Cliffs, Arizona

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"BEST VACATION EVER, WHAT A FABULOUS SUMMER!!

Thanks for following along!


2018' RAM 3500 Laramie CC, DRW, 4X4, Cummins w/ Aisin transmission
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Camper_Jeff_&_Kelli

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Posted: 02/15/18 12:07am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You were in our stomping grounds. Nice pictures.


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billyray50

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Posted: 02/15/18 06:49am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Great pictures and nice rig and truck!!

jmtandem

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Posted: 02/15/18 08:20am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Wonderful pics and narrative. Thanks for posting.


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zb39

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Posted: 02/15/18 01:57pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Loved it, thanks for posting the whole trip.


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sljohnson1938

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Posted: 02/15/18 06:16pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

great trip and report. loved the photo's.


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emcvay

Moses Lake WA

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Posted: 02/16/18 10:42am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Loved seeing the pics of my old stomping grounds! I lived in Victoria, Nanaimo, Coombs and Port Alberni (graduated High School there) as a kid. Also lived in Hazleton (new) and Vanderhoof! So you kinda toured through where I spent my childhood [emoticon]


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Nemo667

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Posted: 02/16/18 01:12pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Stunning pictures Mark. Great finish to a grand trip! Thanks for taking the time to write all of this up and post.


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c.traveler2

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Posted: 02/17/18 06:32pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I enjoyed ever chapter of your grand adventure and this one is of no exception, fantastic photos and wonderful story.


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GpnAZ

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Posted: 02/21/18 06:15am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Sorry for the slow reply back to all that commented, I have been out of town for the last week.

Camper Jeff - You have some nice stomping grounds and thanks for your comments!
billyray50 - Thanks for your nice comments!
jmtandem - Thanks for your nice comments!
zb39 - Glad you enjoyed, thanks for your nice comments!
sljohnson1938 - Thanks for your comments!
emcvay - You grew up in a beautiful area, thanks for your comments!
Nemo667 - Thanks Ben for the nice comments and following along!
ctraveler - Thanks Alex for following along and all your nice comments, I always look forward to your Alaska chapters as well!

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