The route this day took us from Seattle to Eugene, with a detour to Poulsbo, also known as “Little Norway”. A lot of traffic due to the upcoming eclipse, but still a great day!
Approximate time on road/out caching: 14 hours
Total miles driven: 413.2 mi / 665 km
Total cahes found: 19 (+ the event we hosted)
Total DNF: 1
States visited: Washington, Oregon
Famous places visited: Little Norway
Most memorable cache: GC6EYRM 2001: a cache odyssey
Biggest surprise: The lack of traffic in Oregon
Weather: Mostly sunny, light clouds
Highest temperature: 88°F / 31,1°C
Lowest temperature: 59°F / 15°C
We started a bit later this day, and didn’t leave Seattle until 8:30. We didn’t have anything planned before we got to Poulsbo, which we’ve wanted to visit for a while now. As Norwegians, we thought it would be funny to visit the place they call Little Norway.
The traffic wasn’t too bad on the way out there, but we saw plenty of warnings along the interstate, about eclipse traffic (we’ve seen those warnings for several days now).
Event in Little Norway
We started by finding the very fun cache GC4E7B0 Know Your Lackey. A great cache to start the day with! Just driving around, seeing all the Norwegian street names, all the Norwegian welcome signs and all the Scandinavian flags was a fun experience. We are quite a few miles away from home now…
And even more fun, was meeting some of the local geocachers at our event, GC78C56 Meet the Norwegians – in Little Norway. It was nice that Vatvedt and titi89 also had time to join us. Little did we know that an art fair was happening at the same time as our event, right next to it 😛 Made parking a bit difficult, but didn’t affect us much otherwise.
It was also fun that some of the event participants spoke a bit Norwegian. And when walking from the event, talking to Vatvedt and titi89, we were stopped and asked what language we were talking. Haven’t had that happen before 😛 His wife was Swedish.
Finally time for breakfast
After finding some caches in Poulsbo, it was time to hit the road. We had a long way to go, and according to some of the event attendees, we should double the estimated time.
One thing that Airbnb is often missing, is the breakfast (the last b in Airbnb, so should we just say Airb?). And we didn’t get breakfast this day until we were way down on I-5.
Traffic, traffic, traffic
We didn’t get too far before it was time to park. Together with everyone else, in the middle of I-5. Traffic was crazy! And extremely slow.
It did get better at times, but then it got worse again. And stopping at rest areas was almost impossible. Just too much cars and people everywhere.
We didn’t have many caches planned along the way, but the ones we did stop at, was well worth the stop! Amazing caches, and much fun!
The last one was a funny experience. A muggle was parked right next to GZ, and he knew all about the cache. He was more enthusiastic than us, and he almost went through the roof of his car when he heard that we came all the way from Norway. Gotta love enthusiastic people like that!
What, no traffic in Oregon?
Once we crossed the border to Oregon, we expected the traffic to become even worse. After all, everyone was going to Oregon… But apparently, most went somewhere else than us. The traffic only got better once we passed Portland. A bit funny, because the last time we drove through Portland, it was a traffic nightmare. So this was a nice surprise!
A nice twofer
After a few more stops, we arrived in Corvallis. And the goal here was to find the two webcam caches at the Oregon State University. We found a large parking lot, that apparently was free now. How did we know that it was free? A muggle told us. And it didn’t take very long before we understood why there was so much muggles around.
They were all there for a big party. Right at GZ for GC8A44 Beavers Don’t Say Cheese they say WOOD!! Ooops.
But we are allowed some luck, and sure enough, we came close enough by standing right at the back entrance. Probably the best place to stand now anyway, to make us distinguishable from all the muggles. Almost no muggles near the second webcam (because they were all gathered around the first), so that was a lot easier.
With help from home
A few stops later, we arrived at the third webcam of the day, GCM685 Ashlyne Augustine Benson. And this was the type of camera that didn’t work with AT&T (like in Rochester, NY). And our emergency solution didn’t work either. Luckily for us, we arrived here late enough that it was starting to get early next morning back home. So we sent a few messages, screaming for help. Funny thing is that the cache we found before this was GC3D24W Phone-2-Friend. And that wasn’t even on our plan!
We got the response we needed, and cghove helped us from home and Vatvedt helped us from Seattle. You are awesome, you both saved our day! 😀
Airbnb travel tips
After having to DNF the traditional right next to the webcam, it was time to head to the Airbnb we had booked for this night. We couldn’t find any hotel in the area when we were doing the booking, so we had no other choice than to use Airbnb this day as well. The closest (2 star) hotel, the only hotel available, was about two hours away. And they only had one room, for the price of about 1900USD for one night (yes, you are reading that correctly).
A lot of people made a lot of money on this eclipse. It was a bit fun to spot the signs along the way, like “Eclipse parking, 25$”. But we don’t blame them, at least not the ones selling parking. We did read some nasty stories about hotels canceling reservations, to sell them again at a higher price. And that is not okay…
Our Airbnb however, was perfect. Lots of space, easy parking, great price and super friendly hosts. It was a bit fun to end the day giving them som travel tips for their trip to Ireland 😛