After a very long and difficult drive from Corpus Christi, Texas to the Seattle, Washington, we arrived in Bend to spend a couple of nights before the last six hour haul to Seattle. It feels great to be parked and enjoying this beautiful city of Seattle and the surrounding areas that will now be our oldest son’s home. We are all four feeling incredibly grateful to have found the perfect apartment on the first day of looking In downtown. This part of the world is so beautiful with all the mountains and water every place you look. We are so happy to be on the road again and seeing our fulltime family friends along the way. I can honestly say that this is a place I could stay for a very long time. So happy to have a reason to visit until then. ❤
For the past few months we have been deep in decision mode. Talking and talking about life and what our next steps should be after a very successful Fulltime adventure. Ultimately the road is the place we want to be but our 17 year old son who is passionate about theatre needed a place to settle for a while and pursue his art. While it is possible to plant some place in an RV and get plugged into a theatre his real dream was to attend a certain performing arts school in Boston. So we headed there for his audition and we fell in love with the school. He was accepted and we enrolled and moved him in. And for the the three of us, we decided toreturn to the Middle East and our family of friends there. So, This Paisey Life is now headed back overseas for more international traveling adventures. When we are stateside we do plan to live our road life and our tiny home will wait here for us. I am happy to finally know what’s next. It’s been a long limbo.
Posting from Alaska turned out to be a bit of a challenge. I had thoughts of long drive days and up to the minute posts of all the wonderful sights along the way. The idea of what the trip would look like and the reality ended up having no real relationship to each other. The trip was beautiful but there were not many days that internet or sitting in front of a computer screen were possible. We were busy moving almost every day often with no service at all. The view was incredible but most often seen from the passenger seat with the occasional stop at a pullout for a quick shot of “I was here”.
I hope to rewind and post back all the wonderful things we did and saw while we were there, but for now I will just say that it was all worth it. The long driving days, the less than perfect roads, the super high prices and the days and days with no “real” electricity or showers. We enjoyed driving through Canada and being in Alaska and especially traveling with friends. We also had the joy of seeing our oldest son and his girlfriend for nine glorious days of the trip. It was all amazing and a time I will never forget. For today it feels great to be parked in a site for more than 24 hours and to have city water, electricity and all the comforts of home.
Just north of Banff National Park is Jasper and our next stop on the road to Alaska. The campground we stayed in did not have hook ups so we were on limited electricity with scheduled generator time from 8:00 to 9:30 am and 5:00 to 7:00 pm plus our limited water, so time to be very skimpy with cleaning. The site was beautiful surrounded by birch trees with a little path to our traveling companion’s site too.
The town of Jasper is just a short drive from the campground with a bit slower pace and less crowds which made it very enjoyable for relaxing at the library with free internet and easy parking places for shopping and restaurants. We enjoyed several more hikes here. I think the hiking could be a full time job here and you would still miss some of these beautiful trails.
Our first real stop on this journey to Alaska we stayed at Tunnel Mountain II in Canada’s first National park, Banff. The campground was gorgeous with views and full hookups. Loads of activities around the campground too. Our sight was lovely and we enjoyed a 5K hike that circles the campground.
In the town there was so much activity that it was difficult to find a parking place. The streets and buildings resembled a Swiss ski village with adorable little shops. We enjoyed the local brewery and a wonderful ice cream shop called Cows with possibly the beat ice cream in the world. Or so the sign said.
We hiked Lake Louise, which was unexplainably beautiful even in the rain and mud. And on our way back to the campground we took the old 1A Parkway and spotted bear just past the huge traffic jam. The cars piled up being a sure sign there is a bear within view.
Banff was a beautiful stay. We enjoyed finally being in one place for more than just a day and I think we all fell in love with hiking especially on the trails next to waterfalls like Johnston Canyon.
Along the Alaska Highway are many beautiful stops. One town called Watson Lake (the lake there is actually Wye Lake) has a very funky tradition of allowing travelers to post a sign there. It is larger than I imagined and with enough time you could probably find a sign from just about every place. The Mosquitos were out in forces so we didn’t linger as long, but well worth the stop over even for a quick sighting.
We spent the Fourth of July holiday in Chicago. A super fun and very busy place to be for the summer in general and the Fourth of July is no exception. Next time you are heading to Chicago and looking for a great place to park your house, and you don’t mind boon-docking, look up McCormick Place Truck Marshaling Yard. We had a blast staying there. It is really close to everything. We felt very safe inside the gated and guarded parking lot and even enjoyed a fun Zombie Run around the place for exercise. My mother, sister and the four of us all stayed here and even set up chairs in the parking lot to watch the trains go by. This place is right across from the lake and easy access to all things Chicago. On the day my sister left we watched her train whiz by and waved at her for a funny family memory. While we were in Chicago, some very good friends we met in Bahrain happened to be in the area during the same weekend and stopped in for a visit and to see our new home. It was just an all around thumbs up kinda stay. My Mom and sister even gave me the much sought after approval to my lifestyle by saying they can see now why we love this way of life. Our stay here included shows, museums and a local neighborhood Rib Fest. The McCormick Place Truck Marshaling Yard is a parking lot, so no frills, but for location and price it more than makes up the difference.