Boating and an Unplanned Excursion

It's our last morning here at Harmony RV park. We've had a very relaxing time, and the kitties have adapted much better than expected. I was worried sick about one of them escaping while we were here...by "one of them," I mean Miss Sadie. Smitty has the good sense to come when called. Sadie hasn't yet figured out that one kitty against the world isn't a fair fight.

So before Smitty hogged the laptop yesterday, I was planning to tell you about our boating adventures of Wednesday. It sure was nice having the boat already in the water. We just threw off the ropes and motored off, leaving civilization behind.

We passed by where our campsite was to see our camper from the lake...

and then off we went!

We went out as near the middle of the lake as we could. There, I took this 360 degree panorama of the area. It's so peaceful here. Remember that you can make the picture larger by clicking on it.

Here was where we checked the "Be Lazy" to-do off our list.

Here, Mike was checking off the "After-lunch Nap" part of the list.

Now, I just want to say here that there's no place I would rather live than the Three Cats Ranch. I think most people probably feel that way about their homes. Otherwise, why live there? Nevertheless, when we're traveling, I often find myself looking around and saying, "Wouldn't it be nice to live there?"

Or there?

Or there?

So when we grew bored with being lazy, we decided to take you on a little tour of the lake.

Heading south on the lake, we pass by a little picnicking and swimming area. I'm not sure if this is a part of the state park or if it is maintained by the county.

After a little while, you pass under the bridge where US Hwy 12 crosses the lake.

It's always fun to cross under the bridge.

Beyond is a private marina. This was our first introduction to Lake Mayfield when we camped here with some friends way back in 1981. We were tent campers back then. It was a crappy little campground and a little store. That was fine with us. We just needed a flat spot to pitch our tent and some public restrooms. Erik was just a baby. You can see now that it's been modernized. There were some old A-frame cabins that have been torn down to make way for some fancier dwellings, and now there is a full-fledged RV park here.

West of the marina, one can see the dam that makes Lake Mayfield possible. The water comes from the Cowlitz River.

Heading back the way we came...

...eventually, we come to a little beach along the lake. Literally for decades our family selected the campsite in the state park just on the other side of those trees. We made a lot of happy memories on this beach.

We used to anchor the boat just off shore, and we had a little plastic dinghy that we used to ferry ourselves to and from the boat. After doing this with no problems for many, many years, some teen aged boys camped at a site next to us stole the dinghy, poked holes in it, and sunk it. We never felt comfortable anchoring the boat that way again, and so from then on, we had to launch the boat and take it out of the water every time we used it. It was a hassle and time-consuming. Sad, isn't it? When folks steal from you, they take much more than just your possessions.

Just beyond that is the bridge where WA State Hwy 122 crosses the lake.

The kids jumped from the bridge into the lake one summer. Matthew's girlfriend at the time was a competition diver, and so the height was not at issue for her. It took Matthew a little longer to work up the courage, but he did it.

It still gives me a Wahoo! kind of thrill when we speed under the bridges.

On the other side is a sort of cove where the breezes are less and the water is warmer. Here, there is another picnicking and swimming area. I believe this is a part of the state park.

We didn't get sunburned because we slathered on sunscreen throughout the day. Still, we were feeling a little cooked by this time and so headed back to the dock.

Day is done.

It took a while for the marine layer to burn off yesterday morning, but we headed off to do some more boating around 2:00 p.m. only to discover that we'd left the bilge blower on overnight and the boat battery was dead as the proverbial doornail. This led to an unplanned excursion.

First, we had to take the camper off the truck in order to get access to the camper batteries. We only need one, but the camper (thankfully) has two. The park employees helped us ferry the camper battery down to the dock in their golf cart. In case you don't know it, a battery for a camper weighs a ton (not really a ton, but it might as well be). There, Mike attempted to use jumper cables to get the boat started. It didn't work because his jumper cables were (to use his word) "crap." Here is where the excursion came in.

We headed off to this little auto parts store in the tiny town of Mossy Rock, Washington (pop. 759).

When I say Mossy Rock is tiny, I'm not just kidding around. Looking east, you see this.

Looking west...well, there isn't anything looking west except a few houses.

At the auto parts store, we met Doug, who was quite a character. It was almost worth having a dead battery just so we could meet Doug.

Also, along the way, we saw this barn.

And, it's kind of a long and boring story, but a new, better set of jumper cables allowed us to restart the boat, and we just kind of motored around for an hour or so recharging the battery before heading back to the trailer. It was truly a minor setback in an otherwise perfect couple of days.

On the kitty front, Sadie finally discovered the cubbies I set up for them. You can just see the tail-end of her on the right there. She prefers the solitude of the closed cabinet to the little kitty quilt I gave her for sleeping.

There's a cabinet and a quilt on the other side for Smitty, but he has yet to jump up there. He might be too big for these cabinets...either that, or Sadie has claimed the entire space for her own.

So I'm about to shut everything down and start getting ready to head for home. We need to get the boat out of the water, and then we'll be on our way. I'll tell you what I always tell the kitties when we shut the door for traveling: See you on the other side.

15 comments from clever and witty friends:

liniecat said...

Looks like a blissfully pleasant day and no escapee cat - so double bonus lol

Lyndsey said...

The lake looks an amazing place for a relaxing few days. The water looks great...did you do any swimming?

Ray and Jeanne said...

Ohhh, this looks like a perfect place to camp for a while. Glad you had a great time with only a minor setback and no escaped kitty! The story of the plastic dinghy is maddening - I hate when a very few ruin things for many. ~Jeanne

Debbie said...

Beautiful lake and always an adventure. Thanks for taking us along.

claudia said...

What a wonderful couple of days! Thanks for taking us along! It has been so long since I was on the water. We had a cabin at a lake in California starting when I was three, so boating was a life long adventure!

WoolenSails said...

Love your boat, looks like a nice one for day trips. The lake is beautiful and the views of the mountains make it the perfect place to enjoy a day on the lake.


Ioleen said...

Was feeling relaxed just looking the pictures of your day. Great trip by sounds of it. Thanks for the tour of the lake and tiny town.

Brown Family said...

The lake is beautiful! I hope is was not too hot! I could almost feel the fresh breeze as you motored along. It seems there is always something that goes a little wrong! But you got to meet Doug. He looks like a character!

piecefulwendy said...

It sounds like a wonderful, relaxing and restful time for everyone! So glad you were able to enjoy it, and no kitties escaped. You gotta have those little excursions now and then to add to the memories, right?

Dana Gaffney said...

It all looks so peaceful, I would pick the red house to move to, I like that it's open to the lake.
It's nice that you have so many good memories there, it makes it all so much better. It's tradition here that graduating seniors jump off a bridge, Matthew could be a Key's Kid :)

Kate said...

Looks like a great trip. The lake is gorgeous!

Lana Ku said...

lol I thought it was just me that imagined living at the places I visit. Texas will always be home, but it's fun to daydream about life somewhere else, but only if my daughter was close by. Oh the lake looks amazing and so inviting. It was 104 here today, and that water looks so cool. I miss my boating days so it was fun living vicariously through you. Thanks for sharing your stories too.

quiltzyx said...

Nice afternoon on the boat - post excursion that is. I would pick the yellow 1-story house on the lake myself. Stairs are not my friends.
Glad to see you were keeping to your daily schedule too.

Lynn - JnL4God said...

Hey thanks for the visual of Mossy Rock. I used to work with a lady that lived there and was even considering running for Mayor. This was back in 2001(ish) so who knows if she's still there. Glad you had a nice trip.

Dar said...

What a peaceful and relaxing day on the lake. I felt so much better after floating around with you. It brought back great memories of doing the same on one of our great lakes here in MO (Lake of the Ozarks) during the week days when all the amateurs are back to work. The lake is calm and serene just like yours.