Exploration is Key…to fun!

Wenatchee Washington is a wonderful area to explore.

We recently had the opportunity to stay a few days and camp in the Wenatchee River County Park – http://www.wenatcheeriverpark.org/c.aspx?n=about

WONDERFUL place to camp. The spaces are on ‘spokes’ leaving amble room between trailers and it was about a 100′ walk to the shore of the Wenatchee River. I had hopes of Derek getting some fishing in, but being as we have an Oregon fishing license and not a Washington one, that made it a bit difficult.

The next day we took off for Leavenworth WA. Such a cute town based on Bavaria Germany. You may ask “So…just what does one do in a themed town?” *inhales deeply…like Jim Carrey on Ace Ventura* You can – shop, eat, explore, stroll, snack. You can check out local artists, taste wines, taste beers, find new cheeses and bakery treats. Indulge in mustards, chocolates and sausages. There are museums, a delightful summer theatre, and a water front park. *inhales again…* A two story Christmas shop full of every Christmas trinket you could ever want. Or head over to Eagle Creek Ranch (http://www.eaglecreek.ws/) and take a trail ride or sleigh ride. *whew* So I guess you get the idea now eh? There is a lot going on in this little town!

Did I mention when we arrived it was Apple Season! Yep seems those trees were ready to give up their tasty morsels a few weeks early and we got to reap the benefits. A friend of mine turned me on to Honey Crisp apples a few years back and since then I buy them whenever I can find them. Had I known how they would taste in WA, not to mention the sheer size of them, I would have driven to WA to pick my own. Now taking one of these and slicing it to enjoy with a new sheep’s milk cheese I found in Leavenworth, Ossau-Iraty and you have snack like no other. I hear you nay-sayers “Pfft, sheep’s milk cheese Plueease!” Well step back and be amazed! I have lactose intolerance. I cannot eat dairy products (cow’s milk) and thus missed out for years on cheese. Well no more! If you are lactose intolerant I simply must urge you to visit a local cheese shop and talk to the cheese monger. I know that any decent cheese shop will have sheep’s and goat cheeses on hand. Not only that, but be more that willing to let you taste them. Based on our tasting alone we ended up buying a nice hunk to enjoy.

After our day in Leavenworth it was time to check out two other things. Farmers Market and Cider Mills. Oh yes *rubs her hands with glee* First up Smallwoods Harvest http://www.smallwoodsharvest.com/ This is a local owned store that not only offers fresh produce from their orchards, but a petting zoo for the kids, a culinary store for us kitchen freaks, a beautiful park area, cow train, duck pond and all sorts of entertainment.

And then it was time to taste some cider. Only here in the US they call it Hard Cider. Don’t give this stuff to your kids! Our stop of choice was Snowdrift Cider House. http://snowdriftcider.com/ You can also find them on FaceBook at https://www.facebook.com/snowdriftcider After visiting these folks, tasting their wares and learning so much about how various ciders are made, I have a whole new appreciation for what a real hard cider is (which is NOT that stuff like Mikes Hard Cider which is nothing but fermented glucose and apple flavoring – YUCK!) . We even bought a case of 3 of our favorites. And I can honestly say we will be back again! I love a family owned, family run business. Be sure to watch their video on the About Us page and you’ll see what I mean by family owned and operated! I am truly in love with this cider! And when you go in for a tasting you will get to see the process that is involved in making hard cider. I really cannot say enough about this place! Oh wait yes I can – Their phone is 509-630-3507 and they ship!

On the way home we stopped at a campsite called Columbia Riverfront RV Park http://www.columbiariverfrontrvpark.com/ What a neat place to stay! You are right on the Columbia River and folks this is a BIG river. So big in fact you will see this sauntering by –

Massive Ship

Massive Ship

This ship was huge and the engines could be felt more than heard due to the low thrum of the engines. I must say very impressive to see so close. We walked down to the beach and then we were able to walk along the beach for quite a ways. It was so cool to find seashells and lots of drift wood. I had forgotten how good driftwood smells when burned in a camp fire. It doesn’t  smell the same as regular wood. There is a distinct smell of salt (in ocean driftwood)  and moss as it burns that takes me back to the days when I went camping as a kid in Doheny State Beach in California a kid.

So here’s to camping!

Camping Snack

Camping Snack

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