Monday, February 13, 2012

Mt. Rainier Trip 2012

My Dears, 

How was your weekend?! I hope it was great. 

We took a quick mini-trip down to Mt. Rainier for the weekend. It started last Tuesday when I got an email from Chris. 

"Let's go somewhere this weekend!"

I am married to a very meticulous, methodical man and when randomly he pops in with these crazy, spontaneous ideas...well, who am I to say no?!

Since Mt. St. Helens is closed for the winter, we settled upon Mt. Rainier. It's been ages since I've been there. 

So we cast around on the web for a bit and found a tiny cabin for rent. It is located at the Copper Creek Inn, which also boasts a lovely restaurant. Score. 

On a side note, I've found that I enjoy vacations much, much more if I'm not on cooking/cleaning/feeding-the-hordes duty. It's not an awful...I just would like a vacation from it, if possible. And isn't that why you go on holiday, to take a break from your day-to-day duties? :)

Anyway, back to the trip. 

After Chris' class on Saturday morning we packed up the car and headed off to the mountain. 

But first we stopped in Tacoma at the Museum of Glass as Chris has acquired a few tickets. By far our favorite part was the "Hot Shop", which gave live glass-blowing demonstrations. That place was hopping (and toasty warm). 

Here is the Bambino casting a critical eye upon an outdoor exhibit:

Clearly it's not to his liking. Not enough color, perhaps?

After the museum, we moseyed east to our little cabin. 

"Little" is the operative word here: A queen bed, a twin bunk, a small seat, a microwave, and a fridge. And enough room to set up Ben's little crib. 

It was very cozy and just about perfect. The boys took a [very] quick tour of the facilities:

And then we strolled down to the restaurant for some dinner. The blackberry pie was delicious, as was the rest of the meal. 

The next morning we got up at the crack of dawn, decided that was too early, and promptly went back to sleep for a while. We're on holiday, remember!

 Later we did a bit of strolling through the woods around the cabin. 
 Baby likes the forest. 
And then we packed up and headed uphill: To The Mountain!

Some dear friends loaned us some snowshoes and we took a nice little trek. 

It took a bit to get used to having giant feet. 

Chris was also carrying a 20+ pound weight in the form of one Benjamin. 

I've said this before but I'll say it again: I love our national parks. Our $15 entrance fee granted us access for the week, miles and miles of trails that were itching to be explored, a free, ranger-staffed sledding area, a fabulous lodge, and the help of wonderful rangers. And we didn't even take advantage of the ranger-led snowshoe walks, or the informative lectures.

Mt. Rainier has had a rough year, Peeps, they could use your patronage.

Success! We made it!
And what a view. The headwaters of the Nisqually River. Technically I think there is a giant mountain hiding behind that fog. So not a perfect view. But hey, we're not picky. 
We'll take our mountain views whenever they're available:
Afterwards, Ben had his first sledding experience:
 It was popular. 
 Until I got into the sled with him and he remembered he was hungry. 
 Squirming baby + moving sled = not the best idea
 What am I to you? A walking milk truck?! 


Time to go back to the car and tank up on a late lunch.

Ben had his usual and Chris and I chowed down on what we call our "European lunch". Which basically consists of a baguette, split down the middle and piled high with cheese and salami. Add in a few apples and chocolate bars, and it's just about a perfect post-hike lunch.

The name comes from 2003 when we were freshly minted (and poor) college graduates. We took a backpacking trip around Europe for a few months, eating our "European picnic lunches" just about everyday. It was a long time before I could look a piece of salami in the face again.

Right. Back to Mt. Rainier:
 Our little bambino is a trooper. I think he got a bit cold there at the end but managed to hold it together until we were back in the car. And then he took a marathon two hour nap. Which nicely coincided with our trip back home. 
 And that, My Dears, was our weekend. I think we're going to lay low this week as we've all seem to come down with something that involves lots of runny noses and coughs. 

Now that we've got our snow play in, we're ready for some warm weather!



PS: We rented our cabin through this site. Next up? I'd love to rent their train caboose located on a private beach on Puget Sound. Wouldn't that be fun, especially if you had a train-obsessed tyke?