Forced by work obligations to forego a planned trip to the annual Escape Trailer Customer Appreciation Rally in British Columbia, we consoled ourselves with an unplanned visit to Deception Pass State Park near Anacortes, Washington.
I found two campsites available at the park’s Bowman Bay campground. It’s a big park, straddling both sides of a bridge over, uh, Deception Pass, a narrow body of water that separates Fidalgo and Whidbey Islands at the southern end of the San Juan archipelago. I always wanted to use that word in a sentence. Anyway Bowman Bay is the smaller campground in the park, on the north (Fidalgo Island) side.
Bowman Bay is real purty.
Now, about those two campsites. The online reservation site made site 286 look better than 290, even though 290 has hookups and 286 does not. On the site, 286 has a nice water view, and 290 sports a “poor” privacy rating. So we decided to dry-camp and reserved 286.
Two days, 3.5 hours and one expensive ferry ride later, it looked like we had been… Deceived! The shrubs had grown up and eliminated site 286’s view — it was anything but private, with narrow sites hugging it on either side.
There was a lot of noise — I mean a LOT of noise — coming from the nearby day-use area. It was, after all, Memorial Day here in the States, and that’s America’s cue to get out there and display unmitigated gall. Hundreds of people around, making picnic and volleyball noises — really, nothing galling at all, just a lot of people. And noise.
And another lesson to learn: when you dry-camp and you want to fill up with water upon arrival, you might need something other than your hose — because the campground might not have threaded faucets. You might need a Water Bandit, an inexpensive gadget for attaching a hose to a smooth, un-threaded spigot.
We did not have one. (But we have one on order now!). And, not a threaded faucet in sight — EXCEPT at site 290, which was, for the moment, empty.
Befuddled, I pulled TinMan and Toto into 290 to think. Well, hey, we could just grab our water here at 290, I realized, then squeeze ourselves into 286. But then another thing happened. I remembered that 290 had been available for our three-night stay… two days ago. Could I call the park office and switch sites?
No, I couldn’t. 1X service, one bar only, dropped call after dropped call.
By now, of course, Sooz and Wally and Tyler were walking around, stretching their legs and. We huddled. They stayed, and I drove back across the bridge (see above) to the park office to see if I could switch sites. Lucky us! For a mere $15 extra, we got site 290. I returned, heroically, to Bowman Bay. And we made camp.
But hey, look at that architecture! Many of the buildings all around the park were built by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930s. They don’t make ’em like this any more. Not often, anyway.
The only other site at Bowman Bay with hookups was back behind us… occupied by the friendly campground host.
As I say, it was a bit noisy that afternoon, so after all the racing around, we relaxed into a wonderful evening. Gradually, the day-use area emptied out, though I swear the volleyballers were still going when it was surely too dark to see. Whatever. We toddled off to sleep.
I woke up late — around 7:30 — to what I thought was the sound of someone splitting firewood.
Yeah, with Memorial Day past, why not do a roofing job before next weekend’s crowds show up? I can tell you why not.
So, not exactly an auspicious beginning to our getaway. Would we have fun anyway? Yup, we did. I’ll return tomorrow with the proof.Sharing is caring!
Following is daring.