Photo Essay: 2013, Part 5


Hamma Hamma Campground, Olympic National Forest, Washington


Now we’re in rainforest! Elves and unicorns would fit in well here. The campground is located along the Hamma Hamma River and was empty except for one other camper.

Falls View Campground, Olympic National Forest, Washington


A pretty campground, but, more importantly, in a good location for day trips to Mt. Walker, Chimacum, Poulsboro, and the ferry from Kingston to Edmonds.

Kingston-Edmonds Ferry, Puget Sound, Washington


This photo was taken from the beach at Edmonds after we disembarked from the ferry. Spike took a soak in Puget Sound. The fog lifted to present a lovely day. Our ferry rides are definitely a highlight of 2013!


Before going to Kingston to catch the ferry, I walked around the picturesque town and waterfront of Poulsboro.  After the ferry ride, I picked up a slice of wild blackberry pie at the Chimacum Cafe.


On the ferry Spike quickly caught on to the ins and outs of riding an elevator and decided it’s better than climbing stairs


Heart of the Hills, Olympic National Park, Washington


Heart of the Hills Campground was handy for frequent trips into Port Angeles.  When we moved to our next camp, I found myself missing the sound of foghorns from the harbor.

Port Angeles Harbor, Port Angeles, Washington

The Marine Life Center was educational and entertaining.  Lots of colorful anenomes!

The Marine Life Center was educational and entertaining. Lots of colorful anemones!

The sights, sounds, and smells of the harbor are a favorite memory.

The sights, sounds, and smells of the harbor are a special memory, as well as the taste of Dungeness crab cakes eaten at a Port Angeles restaurant.  I really like Port Angeles and want to see it again someday.  Lots of good restaurants and street cafes to try!

Salt Creek Recreation Area, Strait of Juan de Fuca, Washington


I dreamed of looking across the Strait of Juan de Fuca from a place such as this. The crashing waves and diving sea birds were mesmerizing.  We hiked a trail that gave us several viewpoints.  A fun day trip for me and the crew!

Fairholme Campground, Olympic National Park, Washington

Fairholme Campground is on the western end of Crescent Lake.  Very shady, mossy, and green!  Many sites, including ours, had paths to the lake's edge.  It rained!

Fairholme Campground is on the western end of Crescent Lake. Very shady and green with lots of ferns and mossy trees.  Many sites, including ours, have paths to the lake’s edge.  We experienced something rare for us — rain!

Crescent Lake, Olympic National Park,Washington


Crescent Lake was a delight for me as I tried out my new camera. Days were cloudy making for grey, moody pictures. The ducks cooperated though!

Mora Campground, Olympic National Park, Washington

A large, shady campground with few campers.  Rialto Beach is three miles away.

A large, shady campground with few campers. Rialto Beach is three miles away.

Rialto Beach, Pacific Coast, Washington

1-DSC00384 - Copy

I took many photos of the powerful, crashing waves produced by an offshore storm. In this photo Bridget and Spike are on one of many, enormous trees washed onto the beach. I love Rialto Beach!

La Push Beach, Quileute Indian Reservation, Pacific Coast, Washington


La Push is a quaint fishing village across an inlet from Rialto Beach. The crew and I spent several hours walking the beach and watching the sea.   I hated to leave this area, but we had a long way to go and much more to see while keeping ahead of the advancing cold weather.  The brevity of our visit made it all the more enchanting.

Kalaloch Campground, Olympic National Park, Pacific Coast, Washington


We managed to grab a site overlooking the beach. The campground was very crowded until a storm of strong winds and rain emptied it. The crew and I hunkered down and waited for the storm to pass, rather than drive in it. (That’s smoke from a damp campfire on the left side of photo.)

Kalaloch Beach, Olympic National Park, Pacific Coast, Washington


We did have one day to play on the beach before the storm hit. The steps in the background lead up to the campground.

The last night of September . . .

We camped in Love’s Travel Center, Centralia, on our way out of Washington.  Am I ever glad we included this state in our 2013 travels!



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70 Responses to Photo Essay: 2013, Part 5

  1. Suzi from MD says:

    Truly enjoy your blog. Thank you 🙂

  2. Phyllis says:

    Never entertained visiting Washington State in my 50 years. You, however, changed my mind in the month of September 2013. I remember the excitement of knowing you got that spot overlooking the beach. You brought Washington alive.
    Phyllis in Oklahoma

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Phyllis,

      Great compliment — thank you! I had no idea Washington would be so wonderful. I left a lot out of this photo essay because there were delights and wonders every day. Gosh, the fruit! The mountains and forests! And I had to skip a lot in order to make it around the peninsula and south. I’m going to try to get us back there, probably not next year, but soon.

  3. mockturtle says:

    Ah, my own back yard! 🙂

  4. Larry Mammoser says:

    I’ve been reading your blog for about 3 months, and I’m really enjoying it!! Thanks!! Like you, I’m a full time RVer living in my Motorhome. Unfortunately, I can’t handle dust, so I don’t winter camp in AZ. The periodic dust storms when I was in AZ had me wheezing through a wet paper towel to breath. Not good! 🙁 LOL BTW, I made an Amazon purchase today accessing my a/c through your website. Hopefully, you’ll get some credit!! Best wishes, and HAPPY NEW YEAR Sue!! Thanks again for your wonderful blog.

    • Ladybug says:

      Larry, where do you opt to winter? Just curious, since I’ve seen people in the southwest, of course, but also Texas and Florida.

      • Larry Mammoser says:

        Hi Ladybug! I’m “camping” on a relatives property in the Puget Sound area of Washington State. I’ll head down into Oregon in April or May. I’d LOVE to go to the Texas Coast around South Padre Island, but the gas money would bust the budget, and sadly there’s no boondocking there. 🙁 All I need though is to win a lotto, and I’ll be on my way! LOL 🙂 Happy Trails!!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re welcome, Larry, and thank you for dropping in here! I love to hear from my readers, where they are from, whether they are wannabes, newbies, long time RVers, and/or full-timers like you and me.

      Sorry to hear about the dust bothering you. Arizona is such a great state for hunkering down in the wintertime.

      Well, aren’t you a sweetie… Thank you for buying Amazon stuff through my blog . . . and for traveling with me and my crew. Happy New Year to you, too!

  5. Pam Wright says:

    So glad you included so many photos of Olympic National Park. It may be in our near future!!

    Love that picture of the crew on the rock:)

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I hope you do go to Olympic NP. It’s a magical place. I didn’t have the time to visit the Hoh River area or Neah Bay or Sequim, which gives me three good reasons to go back!

  6. Louise says:

    This part of your travels left me breathless last fall. It’s so great to see some of the photos again! I dream of following the rain forest along the coast.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Louise,

      Next time we go to Washington, I want to get there early in the year, as soon as weather allows me to travel there from Arizona and before too many tourists arrive… although it is nice to be there in fruit and berry season… hmm …

  7. Connie & Mugsy (MN/AZ) says:

    Oh… I forgot to congratulate you on becoming a “millionaire” blogger while I was gone. And that was nearly 10,000 visits ago now.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thank you, Connie! It’s hard for me to believe that we’re working on the second million. 🙂

  8. Dawn says:

    You’ve convinced me I have to visit Washington state!

  9. Colleen says:

    Loved this set of photos! We plan to travel to Washington and Oregon this coming summer/fall. Can’t hardly wait to see Olympic NP and the Columbia River Gorge!

    We have been staying at Vandenberg AFB FamCamp the past couple of weeks. Yesterday our toilet clogged in our fifth wheel. We did not have any luck clearing it yesterday evening. Watched a bunch of Utube videos and read a lot on how to clear it last night. Tackled it this morning with wonderful success in about 5 minutes! We sure were relieved! We were pretty excited not to have to call someone to fix it for us, and we did not have to deal with a big smelly mess outside either! It sure made for a great day! Why I thought I needed to share this, I have no idea! Thought you might enjoy our triumph I guess.

    Colleen from Tehachapi

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hey, I share sh*t all the time! I’m glad you’ve got yours under control. LOL!

      You have a fantastic summer/fall in store for you. Thanks for writing, Colleen… You enriched my blog with your . . . uh . . . comment. 🙂

  10. We spent a good portion of the summer RV’ing through Washington, and like you, I also fell under it’s spell. We’ll be returning for a short visit this coming summer, on our way back home from a tour of the N. Plain states. We’ll be on the eastern side, rather than the coastal side, this trip, which should be interesting and different.

    We don’t full time, but we did get in almost 100 days of RV’ing in 2013, and have 140 planned for 2014, so we’re leaning in a bit more each year. I get a thrill every time we pull into a new place, and another thrill when we pull out to head somewhere new. It never, ever gets old!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I feel the same way… so far … It never gets old! I get a thrill whenever we approach a possible campsite or boondock, wondering if it’ll be a good one. Setting up and nesting in a new spot is fun, as well as exploring the area.

      I’m thinking of the north Plains, too. There are so many choices! I’ll change my mind several times over the winter months.

      Thanks for writing, Tamara. I always enjoy reading your comments.

  11. Susan in Dallas says:

    Hubba, Hubba. Hamma Hamma! What a beautiful and magical looking place! Might keep me warm as it’s fixin’ to get cold here in Texas.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hoo-boy… Here we go again with you Texans and your weather. If you’re not burning up, you’re freezing! Hubba, hubba, indeed… 🙂

      Nice to hear from you, Susan. Stay warm!

  12. DeadEye says:

    Very nice photo memories of your year. Enjoyed your sharing it with us.

    So, where to in ’14??


    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Don,

      I don’t know yet. Most of the time I don’t know where I’ll be next week. Glad you liked the trip down memory lane.

  13. Timber n' Rusty says:

    Wow Sue, the memories, the photos, and the crew. Great and Timber says hi too :>P

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, to you and Timber from me and the crew. I bet our travels do bring back memories for you.

  14. Cari in North Texas says:

    Thank you so much for taking the time to put the photo essays together. Talk about a walk down memory lane – I remember some of the places, but not all. I especially enjoyed your visit to Washington State. I may have commented earlier in the year that my ex and I lived in Bremerton, across the sound from Seattle, for about 6 months back in 1980, but we never got to go anywhere. This retrospective has definitely reinforced my desire to go back to that state and travel where you went. Bremerton was a dump, and we were there in the winter 🙁

    There are a series of cold front heading our way over the next week or so, and one passed through last night. I’m grateful that there’s no wet stuff this time, just cold temps and wind. Your photos of your current desert location are a welcome distraction!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Cari,

      I remember when the crew and I were moving around Washington that the reactions to my blog posts and photos seemed to be more excited than usual. I think a lot of my readers experienced the same surprise I wrote about and photographed. Of all the western states we’ve visited since the beginning of our journeys, Utah and Washington have been the most surprising. I had no idea!

      I hope you have the opportunity to enjoy Washington as much as we did. In the meantime, bundle up and stay warm and out of the wind!

  15. Grace says:

    Hi Sue,
    I’m really enjoying your year in review. I would find it hard not to just repeat the same route because you saw so many beautiful places. I won’t be missing a post again next year and am curious if you’ll be exploring some new areas. We’re going to go broke buying all those Benchmarks, aren’t we!
    I passed your website along to a friend who I know will just love it!
    I’m thinking, now that Tioga George has stopped posting, you’ve kinda taken his place. You have many followers that just adore you and hope to follow in your footsteps one day.
    We owe bunches to George, don’t we! (and now YOU!) Thanks!
    Grace (in Tucson)

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Grace,

      Yes, I wonder if I would’ve ever decided to live on the road if I hadn’t stumbled upon George’s blog. He showed me the way. Reading his blog helped form a vision of my retirement years that I could afford and enjoy. I hung on his every word and photo during the last grueling years of work. He was my lifeline! I’ll always remember him with gratitude.

      I’m also grateful to my friend Rusty for the gift of my first Benchmark atlas — Oregon. Once I saw how it aided me in finding free camps, I wanted them all. The price of each one seems low to me now that I’ve saved several hundred dollars in campground fees and gained priceless days in beautiful, private camps.

      Will we go back to some of these places we found in 2013? I hope so. However, I think it will be a long time before I give up looking for new camps to love!

      Thank you for telling your friend about my blog. I’m glad you’re enjoying these photo essays of the past year.

  16. Ilse says:

    Goodness Sue, if I wasn’t enjoying the here and now, I could really be homesick right now. 🙂

  17. Cinandjules says:

    Serenity captured by RVSue. Soothing. 🙂


  18. LeeJ says:

    I started reading your blog from the beginning and have just last night read about your visit to Washington state, now this beautiful essay of that part of your trip. I am thinking the next time you go up there, the state should donate a pass to you, for all the new tourists that will be going next summer simply because you make it so very tempting!

    We have been camping in California for many years, I am a native, and have done everything from campground/parking lot in San Francisco to boondocking in the Sierra Nevadas.. it is never boring. The longest stretch was when my sister was having cancer treatment and we stayed in Fort Bragg to run her restaurant for three months. We found that we could live in our fifth wheel trailer quite comfortably, having less, living more simply.

    So we have taken it a step further..we have our Casita now and are planning more of that simple life starting in a few weeks..just exploring our home state, but what a state!

    I have seen some very disparaging comments about California, but it is wonderful…lots of pristine beautiful places to see, lots of people, yes, but this place is big! The north coast is stunning, the forests are magical, the beaches breath taking in my end of the state.

    See what you started Sue? You make me proud of you and I don’t even know you, but feel a certain kinship already! My husband doesn’t much care for camping, but he thought getting the Casita was a great idea, much easier for me to handle alone and easy for us together. I have my Benchmark California and Oregon, making plans! I have a feeling one of those plans will be selling the fifth wheel, who needs it when I have a Hobbit House?

    Arlo and Zoe are good traveling companions, and will be my crew..little Silky Terriers..little terrorists as my husband says…

    Hope this new year provides you with many many more adventures with Spike and Bridget. Keep have found your true calling!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, LeeJ,

      What fun it is to open up a map and plot a path to a new adventure. The freedom to roam… love it!

      I’m happy for you, Lee… You have a vision that will reward you beyond measure. I’m glad your husband is beginning to share that vision. I wish you many splendid camps!

      I’m confident you will enjoy your Casita. It’s so easy to tow and maneuver. I back up the BLT, wiggling into narrow spots, as easily as backing a car. If I change my mind (something I tend to do), I can make a U-turn in a tight spot.

      Yes, California has so much to enjoy! The crew and I have camped two autumns on the east side of the Sierra. I want to get over to the west side, too.

      Always fun to read your enthusiasm for camping, Lee. Thanks for writing.

  19. Diann in MT says:

    Washington state is heaven! Thanks for the beautiful photography, Sue!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re welcome, Diann. Washington … oh, those juicy peaches and pears… and berries! It would be worth the gas to go back for the fruit and berries alone. Really. They’re that good. Gee, I wish I had some right now!

  20. MK Reed in NE GA says:

    Wonderful photos of my beloved PNW…Oh how they make me soooo homesick. Sigh….anyone want 10 acres in NE GA????…LOL.

    Don’t miss fruit and berry season in the PNW, if you go too early you’ll be sad not to eat our great foods!

    Again thanks for the review!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, MK,

      Re: fruit and berries… See my reply to Diann above. LOL! Thanks for the reminder. Timing is everything!

      Glad you like the photos, even though they make you ache for home.

  21. BARB GEORGE says:

    I am so glad so many love the Pac NW. I spent New Year’s s day on a hike at Lake Silvia campground and it was so so fun.
    Hugs from a bit drippy
    Hoquiam, Wa

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Barb,

      The crew and I almost went to Lake Silvia campground, but then I changed course, and didn’t go that way. What a great way to start the New Year… hiking at a lake…

      Yes, a lot of readers have become fans of the PNW. Hope it doesn’t get too crowded! 🙂

  22. mary (in Colorado) says:

    Fruit and berry season in WA! Rocky Ford melon season in Colorado! Hatch chilis in NM! and who knows what else? One could eat their way through the US in the summer and fall. Nevertheless, your WA pictures are just fantastic and I’ve put it on the list. Thank you.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Mary,

      You’re welcome. The crew and I have neglected Colorado, except for an excursion to Mesa Verde and a camp at Fremont Campground in the northwestern part of the state. And I do want to return to New Mexico and explore Colorado … now that I’m more confident about mountain driving.

      Hmm . . . so the melons are really good, eh?

  23. Michelle says:

    Beautiful pictures! I’ve never been to Washington, but now I want to go. I’m enjoying your photo essay. I’m relatively new to your blog and it’s helping me catch up.

  24. Karen SC says:

    You have outdone yourself with all these review posts of the past year. I don’t know which I like better. But it sure will help me when I take a trip out West in the future. For now I take a monthly outing for around 7-10 days and am happy to be outdoors and camping. I mostly am camping solo but do have family that will come and visit for a couple of days. A couple of days is enough for me. How wonderful that you can be out all the time. Enjoy!!!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Karen,

      I’m pleased with the response to these photo reviews of the past year. It’s been fun to make them, too. Sometimes I find myself getting off track when putting them together… I stare at the photos and let the memories flood in!

      Thank you for your positive feedback. I’m glad you can get away on camping trips enough to suit you. I wish you much enjoyment, too.

  25. So beautiful! I haven’t been up there since the late ’80’s…you have brought back to my memory many, many good and happy days….Thank you :-).

  26. Sheri says:

    Hi Sue! I second all the above comments regarding your photo essay of the year in review!! I would recommend to new readers to go back and read from the beginning…it is like a good novel that you don’t want to end…and then..excitement!!… because it doesn’t end…that is the best part!! I do have a question for you. I think you have shared with us how it is just as wonderful as you had hoped..this life you have now…but my question is: is there any downside to your new life that your weren’t expecting or hadn’t foreseen? Just wondering…for those of us considering the life style…Again, thanks a million (well over that now, LOL) for sharing with all of us! Hugs! Sheri

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Sheri,

      “Is there any downside to your new life that your weren’t expecting or hadn’t foreseen?”

      First, let me say, I always analyze out the ying-yang any new endeavor. I try to come up with everything that possibly might go wrong. Then I follow that up with what I would do when those wrong things happen. It’s not negative thinking. It’s problem-solving in advance. Okay, back to your question.

      So when my “new life” began, I was surprised by the ease with which I lived each day on the road. Most of the problems I anticipated haven’t happened. I also was and continue to be surprised by the wonderful experiences on the road.

      For me there is no downside. What can I say? I enjoy every part of living full-time and traveling in a little trailer with my canine pals. Even dumping tanks is okay with me… I look at it as a task that “buys” me more time off by myself in nature.

      Other people may not adapt as well as I did. Honestly, I can’t think of one downside!

  27. Alan Rabe says:

    Oh, How I wish you had some pictures of the storm. It was the most exciting part of the last year but it is scary getting out in that stuff especially with a camera. Making a covering for a camera so it won’t get wet is a bit tricky with your camera. It isn’t for cameras with lens that can take filters, but that is another issue.
    It is so nice that you share your life with the world, I don’t know that I could do such a thing. It has been a lot of fun being a part of it all.
    Bless You and yours and as always Enjoy.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Alan… I remember you wanting photos of the storm. The rain was horizontal and the wind was tremendous. All I would’ve accomplished by going out to take pictures would be to upset the crew, ruin my camera, and come up with blurry nothings for photos. The excitement of the storm is sound and movement, not so much visual.

      Sorry! You must like to see those news reporters being blown around… Haha! Just kidding… Thank you for your kind words about me.

  28. Alan Rabe says:

    PS. I believe you paint, but you never mention doing any painting. Do you get the chance to do any. A painting of KOFA would be wonderful. You could auction your paintings off in ebay. I would love to have one if it was possible.
    Again, Enjoy

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, again… About the painting…

      I seem to go through phases. While attending university late in life to finish my degree, as well as the years of teaching that followed, my focus was all about math and numbers.

      Now my focus is all about writing and words. There was a time when my focus was on creating things with my hands (gardening, landscaping, homemaking) and painting.

      I get the urge to paint, but it passes quickly. So much of my time and creative energies are absorbed by photography and writing… Maybe someday. There’s never enough time and energy for all I want to do!

      Yes, a Kofa painting would be fun… Thanks for writing, Alan.

  29. Terri From Texas says:

    All this talk of the PNW reminds me of when my Dad retired in 1978 and the first thing he did was go out and buy a hard sided pop up Apache trailer that slept 5. He had almost always worked 6 days a week so we never got to take any long family vacations when I was growing up. However, that summer of 78 when I was 18, my younger brother, my older sister, me, and my parents all piled into our 1970 Dodge Polara station wagon and took off on a tour of the western U.S. One of my most vivid memories is of sitting in the Hoh National Rainforest in WA while it rained (of course) outside, and my parents taught us how to play Bridge, of all things! We probably stayed there a week. My Dad joked that it reminded him of the Philippines during W.W. II. We also hiked to the base of Mt. Ranier-an absolutely stunning place.
    See what you do, Sue? You get us to reminiscing and we want to go back….I soon hope to take my husband to all those great places!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I love your story of The Great Family Vacation of the Summer of ’78! Your Dad’s joke about the Phillipines made me laugh. At least he had a sense of humor about it. I’m glad the guy got the chance to take his family on that trip. Look at all the memories that were made for five people!

      Thanks for telling us about it, Terri. May you and your husband make your own fabulous travel memories!

  30. LeeJ says:

    I just read your October post where you mentioned your birthday, you said October babies were special..I agree! I also am an October baby, just a couple of years older than you..a great vintage year was 1946 and apparently as was 1948!
    One of my friends that is a 1944 vintage told me she was at the barn and a fellow rider told her that she was such an inspiration, still riding at her friend told me it took a minute for that to register…the young lady was calling her old!

  31. DeAnne in TN says:

    Umm…here in the SOUTH, middle Tennessee, we are delaying the day our kiddos come back to school from Monday to Wednesday. The temps are supposed to be around 9 degrees during the day with lows 0-1 degrees. It’s been 20 years since this kind of weather. Wish I was in Southern Arizona!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Stay inside and enjoy the extended holiday, DeAnne. Unfortunately for teachers, you’ll have to make up the days later on, probably when the weather is nice. 🙁

  32. Dawn on Camano Island says:

    We Washingtonians are glad you & the crew visited the Great Northwest, Sue, and so happy you enjoyed it as much as we locals do. I’ve begun my exit from work & a year from now, we will officially be on the road as ‘anytimers’ (we don’t want to leave our home here at the end of the road on Camano Island permanently). Thanks to you & your astute boondocking skills, we have a long list of places to go & things to see!

    Take good care. Ear scritches to the Crew. Happy Trails.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Best wishes to you and your husband as you ease away from work and into the fun of boondocking!

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