Summer in Portland with Katherine and Juls was super.
The scenic route from Vancouver via Seattle to Portland is well worthwhile taking. It was cold and drizzly as we chugged along the windswept shoreline. White herons were everywhere, wading across the mudflats, or perched on rocks. Tiny fishing boats skimmed up and down. From the coast we merged into green forest areas, bypassing the major townships. We arrived in Portland to be met by Katherine, and then it was a quick drive home to Beaverton.
Zamon, Jen and Tai met us in Squamish and we immediately headed to the new Gondola ride. Squamish is famous for its mountains, including The Chief, where rock climbers continuously rappel up and down the steep basalt rock. Five year old Tai, already a keen climber and cyclist, took care of Mama Helen on the gondola, trying to make me look down at the vista. It was a glorious day for hiking in the mountains, taking the swing bridge and admiring the alpine fauna and flora.
Leaving Squamish for Horseshoe Bay we heard a loud pop and squishy sound. Pulling into a lay-by, Zamon found we had a blown out tyre. Tai was most interested in taking the wheel off and was a great helper to his Dad. Unfortunately the spare tyre did not fit. Two young guys pulled up to help, and in the end it was decided they would take Johno and I on to our rendezvous with Ken and Val whilst Zamon and Tai waited for a tow truck. All ended on a positive note, especially when the loaner for Zamon's Volvo was a convertible!
Val and Ken Young met us at Horseshoe Bay in their runabout. Calm seas and clear sky as we motored into the Howe Sound and stopped for 'Happy Hour". We watched the ferry leisurely cruise past. We were baffled to see float planes dropping off pizza to clients on small fishing boats. Kayakers were out and about as we puttered into the pier at The Landing. It was a magical beginning to our few days on the coast.
Our days were filled with leisurely walks through leafy woods to windswept and rocky beaches. Coffee at The Black Bean, family barbecues, a drive to the tropical gardens at Sechelt, and lunch at the Lighthouse. The magic made by Ariel and Rochelle who joined us for the weekend added to our lovely holiday. Thank you to our generous hosts Ken and Val. We had a marvellous time.
Over the last few days Johno and I have made more memories as we revisited our friends living in Vancouver. Our first stay was with Eileen and Dave Pulfrey. Their lovely garden is filled with fruit and vegetables squeezed between an array of lovely spring flowers. Rhododendrons were in full bloom throughout Vancouver.