Entry for June 06, 2007

We had a pretty good camping trip. It was much cooler up in the mountains than at home. It was still uncomfortable driving in the hot car up there, but it was so much better. We drove up to Iron Creek campground on Saturday, which is up near the east side of Mt. St. Helens. A quick review of Iron Creek campground is that it is very nice, but I found it to be overpriced. It was 16 dollars a night and there was water and pit toilets. I think that 16 a night is kind of steep for pit toilets. The sites were nice and large and separated though. WE pretty much had the entire four loops to ourselves as well. Saturday night we set up camp, hiked around to find the river and do some exploring and water fighting, then built a fire and baked potatoes and roasted bratwurst and marshmallows. Baking potatoes in the fire was a brilliant success. I don’t know if I’ve ever had such tasty baked potatoes.

The next day we had a big fight about who would do the four breakfast dishes, then drove up the twisty road quite violently, only to find that the Windy Ridge road which goes into the Mt. St. Helens monument, was closed without explanation. I had looked online before we left and found that the roads into the monument to the north and south were probably going to be closed for the season, since they got washed out in big storms this winter. However, Windy Ridge was supposed to be open. It was definitely not open, so we never got to see Mt. St. Helens. Bah. The ranger station was also not open, and they didn’t have any useful trail maps outside there. They had a list of the trailheads and their conditions, but no indication of where said trailheads were. It was highly frustrating.

In the end, we went back to our camp and bushwacked up the creek for a ways. It was a really large creek, very fast, and quite deep. It was very difficult bushwacking too. It took us well over an hour to get about a half of a mile, I think. We were looking for some way of crossing the creek so we didn’t have to go back the way we came, because the other side looked much better. Eventually we came to a place where we really couldn’t get any further on that side of the creek, and turned around. We took a slightly different route back down the creek, and found a place where it only looked like it was only moderately dangerous to cross. We waded across, shoes and all. I got wet up to my waist, and thought that I was going to fall from the strong current and get swept down the river. It was pretty intense.

That night we explored the confluence of the creek and the big river, then ate stroganoff and pudding and salad for dinner and, of course, had a gigantic fire. It sprinkled a little bit that night. The next morning we packed up the tent quickly because it was starting to rain and we heard thunder. Lauren made us some delicious breakfast, and then we packed up the rest of the stuff and headed home, dropped off our stuff, then went to the movie theatre to watch Pirates 3.

Pirates 3 was fantastic. It probably wasn’t as good plot-wise as the first one, but it wasn’t as ridiculous as the second one, and it was hilarious all the way through. I was delighted. The ending is also completely perfect.

Today I went out for lunch to Atomic Brewpub with the guys from Ken’s work. His boss bought us all lunch, so that was cool. I shared the BBQ pizza with Ken. It was highly tasty.

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