10 hours in the car, shut out of 2 full campsites on this busy Saturday, getting crabby. And it’s hot! Going down the road, feeling bad, to quote the Grateful Dead.
We lit out from Wells Gray Provincial Park early this morning and headed back into the US. (Good grief—the border is like Fort Knox: multiple cameras, a huge facility, insisting on our rental agreement, investigating inside the van. When we left the US, the Canadian border was a guy in a booth who chatted with us and then waved us through.)
So it’s 95 degrees out and we’re (unsuccessfully) looking for a place to land, crisscrossing through Washington’s vast and highly-irrigated apple- and cherry- growing region. Then we came across Steve. Ah, Steve, the camp host at Entiat City RV Park. It’s on Lake Entiat, WA (which is part of the Columbia River) and the sites are at the edge of the lake. Steve is reclining in his lounge chair with his yellow lab at his side, reading a book about boondocking in an RV. We pull in—why not?—and inquire. All he has is one RV space left. We consider taking it. He asks if we have an RV. No—just a van, we need no services. He tells us to park in the far dirt lot and stay overnight—no charge.
So we are set up in a city park at the far end of a dirt road. We unloaded chairs and sat by the lake, Laura took a swim and as the park emptied of its day use folks, we are left alone. Turns out that Steve is a retired independent catastrophic insurance claims adjuster/inspector. We had a long conversation with him. We learned that AAA and USAA are terrific companies if you have a catastrophic loss (the other big companies are terrible). He spends a lot of time on the road as just an interested traveler and as a camp host.
So we rest tonight on a beautiful lake in a city park full of RVs and plastic water toys and boats and kids and parents playing outside and swallows catching bugs. It is lovely, and we are lucky.