May 1 – May 21, 2020
We were lucky to get into North Whidbey RV Park after our long trek north. With the Covid-19 lockdown still in effect only long-term rentals were allowed. We booked online and there were no restrictions mentioned so we were surprised when we arrived and they told us it was closed to new campers. We explained we were supposed to be volunteering in the North Cascades but had no idea when the call would come for us to move up into the park. They had some State Park volunteers in the same situation so they let us stay. We just kept renewing online as our volunteer start date kept shifting back on the calendar. The campground was very well maintained, good Wi-Fi, nice laundry room, friendly staff and all around a great place to stay.
The three of us took daily walks around the campground avoiding contact with anyone else but thoroughly enjoying the cooler air and the ability to get outside again. Trees, sky, grass… and jets. I need to mention that the fighter jets train for aircraft carrier take off and landings at the base just south of the RV Park… and they fly directly overhead… repeatedly. Talk about NOISE! The first pair that passed over had me ducking and covering my ears but John reacted differently and ran for the binoculars to check out the planes. That’s the difference between a normal human and an aerospace engineer. Surprisingly, we got used to the planes flying over.
Chloe loved Whidbey Island and the Puget Sound. She’s decided that when she gets rich, she’ll build a house on an island in the sound. We explained she would also need a boat but she had it all figured out. She would build a clear tube at the bottom of the Sound (like they have in some large aquariums) so she could travel between mainland and private island staying nice and dry and watching the colorful sea life all around her. I like that plan.
We were lucky again that the Governor opened State Parks for day use only three days after we arrived on the island… and the RV Park was butt up against gorgeous Deception Pass State Park. We hit the trails on day one of the opening. Over the next week we hiked the trails, wandered the beaches, checked out the campgrounds, explored the tide pools, snagged a couple of geocaches and generally had a wonderful time. We didn’t stop hiking until it was time to get it all together, reluctantly pop the grandchild on a plane to join her mother and head for the mountains. Here’s what we did:
Hiking on Whidbey Island (approx. 25.5 miles in 8 days with Chloe):
Deception Pass SP trails: Goose Rock Summit, N Beach, W Beach, Cranberry Lake, Rosario Point & tidepools, Lighthouse Point, Campground Loops, Hoypus Area Short Trail, Marsh Trail, Slug Slough, Fern Valley, Janes Trail, Logging Road, Hoypus Point, HP loop, Old Ferry Rd, Goose Rock Perimeter, Discovery Trail.
Fort Ebey SP trails: Bluff, Beach, Kyle’s Kettle, Raider Creek, Grandfather Tree, Water Tower, Old Gun Battery.
Once we popped Chloe on that plane, we hunkered down and did all the little housekeeping things we needed done before heading into the Cascades. We bought new cell phones that ACTUALLY get signal, found someone to fix the car, did maintenance on the RV, inventoried our supplies and bought a bunch of stuff to stock up in preparation for living 90 minutes from the store. Then on to the next adventure!
There is a lot more to explore and see on Whidbey Island so it is on our list for a future, non-Covid-restricted visit.