Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Anniversary Trip 2010

This year, as with most we try to get away for at least a long weekend (it’s not every year we can get to spend a week in Hawaii or the Caribbean), and most years it involves ocean waters. Of course living in the Pacific Northwest makes coastal travel quiet easy. This year we chose The Misty Valley Inn Bed & Breakfast in Forks, WA.

We would like to clarify something, if you happen to be one of the bazillions of people that follow the Twilight Series you know all about Forks and this is great, however, we are have not read the books, so we aren’t one of you. We chose Forks because we love the Northern Coast of Washington State.

We both took off work early on Friday to drive over to the Olympic Peninsula (leaving Mom at home alone for 2 nights). It was about a 4 hour drive. We found the Misty Valley Inn without any trouble; their website gave really good directions! Once we arrived at their door we were greeted by Rachel and immediately felt as if we had arrived at the front door of a long lost friend.

Rachel gave us the grand tour of the guest areas of their home before showing us our room. As we followed her we walked by the buffet in the formal dining room which hosted the most tempting chocolate cake with raspberry filling, lemon bars and brownies (all home-made from scratch by Rachel). We knew this had all of the makings of a good anniversary trip. After some friendly persuasion we indulged in cake and coffee before retiring to our room for the evening.

Our bed faced the biggest set of sliding glass doors we’d seen (close to 8ft) which provided us with an unobstructed view of the meadow. As we began to stir the next morning it wasn’t long before we heard a light tap on the door; when we opened the door there was a tray in front of the door, 2 cups of coffee, and nice hand-made note card with today’s information and a tiny vase of fresh flowers. We enjoyed our coffee while we continued to take in the view out of our bedroom.

We joined another couple for breakfast in the dining room. Breakfast… where do we begin? There are really no words that could possibly do it justice. Rachel recited the breakfast options to us on Friday night and took our order; Bill selected the omelet and Tonya the Irish waffles. The meal began with fruit juice, homemade muffins and warm spiced fruit, and this was all before the main entrees. I guess the best way to sum up the experience is that if you left the table hungry, it’s your own fault!

After a brief recovery period (seriously the breakfast was phenomenal, huge and unbelievably delicious) we headed out on the day’s adventure. The January weather in
the Pacific Northwest is iffy at best. Drizzle, rain, cloudy, sun breaks (another Northwest term), and fog are pretty much the common theme this time of the year. We had planned a hike around Lake Ozette but considering the fact that we are “fair weather” hikers we thought we would just take a scenic drive so we headed toward Neah Bay and the Makah Indian reservation.
We purchased the required “recreational” pass at the Makah Tribal Center and headed to Cape Flattery. Cape Flattery is the most northwestern point of the lower 48 states. Once we arrived the rain stopped so we donned our walking sticks, cameras and headed out for a nice walk. It was gorgeous! The trail is very well maintained and for the most part a boardwalk trail. Bill commented that the trail was maintained better than anything we’ve walked in the National Parks or Forests in Washington State. In our opinion we viewed some of the most incredible views of the Pacific Coast.

We had originally planned a nice dinner to celebrate our anniversary at one of the lodges in the Olympic NP but we weren’t really that hungry (considering that we were still wearing that mornings breakfast, another one to look forward to on Sunday and that chocolate cake & lemon bars) so we grabbed a light dinner in Forks and went back to the inn for the evening.
Sunday morning pretty much played out as did Saturday. There were a few differences, new breakfast companions, new entrée choices and we had to think about heading back home. We did decide that we would go back for a night in April, this time taking Mom with us.

Rachel and Jim were so kind and could not do enough for us. We had our hands slapped more than once for trying to refill a glass of ice water or take a dirty coffee cup to the kitchen. Rachel would remind us that we were there to be pampered and take it from us; she is a professional in that field.

As we made our way home we had hoped to hike to the Sol-Duc Falls but the rain stopped us; however we did stop at Salmon Cascades falls and will hike to the falls in when we go back in April (weather permitting)!

It was a wonderful, relaxing weekend and a great way to celebrate our 15 years together.

Lessons Learned:
· We are “fair weather” hikers
· A whirlwind romance can result in 15 happy years together
· Bill’s handcrafted walking sticks are keepers!
· The $10 we paid for an annual pass to the Makah reservation was worth the money