A very happy kitty

A very happy kitty

On Wednesday we arrived at Three Island Crossing State Park and saw GREEN GRASS!! Now, this may not seem like much of a thing for most of you, but since we’ve spent the last 4 months in semi-arid desert it was a total revelation. We parked the rig in the lush GREEN lawn, piled out of the RV and ALL 5 of us flopped down and rolled around with reckless abandon in the grass….GLORIOUS!!!

This green stop also marks the end of our desert travels, the end of our time in Utah and the bridge to our summer in the Northwest. Since the beginning of January we’ve been in desert mode and have spent the vast majority of our time either boondocking or dry-camping. In fact when we arrived at Antelope Island early this week it was the first time we’d dumped or re-loaded on water since Monument Valley! That’s almost 3 weeks “in the boonies” on our tanks, a pretty typical span for us these days with good water conservation. It’s also one of the things we love about the SW in winter -> tons of easy boondocking, low-cost camping and opportunity to get in the “wilds”.

This park has a ton of cool displays about the Oregon Trail

This park has a ton of cool displays about the historic Oregon Trail

Not a bad view for afternoon cocktails!

Not a bad view for afternoon cocktails!

From here on out we’ll be spending more time in campgrounds and thus a little more $$ on camping, at least until we get to our summer jobs in Bandon, OR. This is not because there are no boondocking opportunities in the NW (there are, although you’ll get less and less of them as you approach the coast), but mostly because we really, really love the NW state parks. So we’ll be taking a rather cushy tour along the Columbia River Gorge and down the WA/OR coast with the luxury of hookups, at least part of the way..

As for Three Island Crossing State Park, it’s a spot we discovered on our dash to OR to get our big slide issues fixed a few years back. We found it and immediately fell in love. It’s a super-easy stop on 84 north with huge sites, TONS of green grass and a really neat visitor center. Apparently we’re not the only ones who think so. Yesterday afternoon we noticed a rather familiar rig enter the campground (Paul and I both swore we’d seen it in Antelope Island) and a short time later we got a visit from some blog readers. Indeed they’d been following the same route and ended up in the same spots! We spent a fabulous evening chatting with young fulltimers Brian and Sharon who are on their way to a workamping job in WA. We had so much fun I took zero pics, but can you can share the creative side of these fine folks through Brian’s self-published Amazon book Indian Paintbrush.

But first we’re making a stop in Boise. Paul is taking a quick trip home, I’m going to be getting into trouble tackling a few RV projects and we’ll be stocking up. So it’ll be back into “the maw” for a while before we get back into the wilds. All part of the journey :)

P.S. I also want to say thanks to blog reader Ward who braved the gnats at Antelope Island to come out and visit while we were there. Your company and bottle of wine was most appreciated!

Now that's a nice, green pad!

Now that’s a nice, green pad!

Afternoon walk on the trails

Afternoon walk on the trails

Hiking at the park

Hiking at the park

Polly cools in the Snake River

Polly cools in the Snake River

Gorgeous sunset

Gorgeous sunset

And moody sunrise

And moody sunrise

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41 Responses to Green, Greeen, Greeeeen!!! Three Island Crossing State Park, ID

  1. Sherry says:

    Your upcoming route is just the one we want to take in the summer of 2014 if things go well so I’m anxious to get the usual great tips from you on where to stay and where to hike. No dumping or taking on water for 3 weeks is amazing. We can do two but have never pushed on to try three.

    • libertatemamo says:

      It’s taken a while to get to the 3-week stage. In our first year the best we could do was 2 weeks, but now we happily last longer. An external (portable) container for drinking water, and using body wash wipes every now and then has given us the “extra mile”.
      Hope we can find some good spots on the gorge for you!
      Nina

  2. Paul and I said the same thing about green when we got to Ohio. Actually, Paul just said yesterday…I can’t get over how green everything is. We lived in Ohio our entire life until we began to full time. It is just amazing what we took for grant…something as simple as green grass.

    Bella is also in heaven with all the shrubs to hide under.

    • libertatemamo says:

      It’s so true. The green colors are almost overwhelming when you first see them after a long spell in the desert.
      Nina

  3. rvsueandcrew says:

    Hello Nina and Paul! The crew and I LOVED Three Island Crossings last year. We camped in the lower campground. And, like you, the big, first impression was WOW! GREEN! (Why am I shouting?)

    We’re way back here in Utah at Goosenecks . . . parked not too close to the rim.

    • libertatemamo says:

      Oooooo…Goosenecks!! I’m so happy you made it. AND you have Internet…whooo hoooo!
      Three Island is just such a pretty park. They take so much pride in their green lawns. A real green oasis after the drive across 84.
      Nina

  4. Gunta says:

    I’ll be doing part of your jaunt in reverse in about a week… heading East along the Gorge, then stopping to see Hells Canyon (weather permitting) and on to Utah. We are such a well-traveled bunch. Looking forward to meeting up at the Lighthouse.

    • libertatemamo says:

      I’m hoping you’ll post some pics of that trip on your blog. I’ve heard so many cool things about Hells Canyon. And look forward to seeing you too in Bandon!
      Nina

      • Gunta says:

        I’m hoping I get some pics worth posting. Talked to the Visitor Bureau a week ago. The roads hadn’t been plowed yet. Hopefully they’ll get it done… if not by the trip heading out, then on the way back.

  5. The green is a little bright! Boy, we haven’t seen that much green is a long while either. Glad everybody enjoyed a good roll in the grass.

    • libertatemamo says:

      Yeah it was almost blinding to our desert-trained eyes. So happy to be back amongst all the greenery. I’m sure the novelty will wear off soon enough, but for now we’re all pretty excited.
      Nina

  6. I know EXACTLY what you mean about green! We just arrived in Lake Tahoe and we have green and beautiful pine trees! Wonderful after the winter in TX and NM.

    • libertatemamo says:

      Ahhh…lovely! Something particularly special about the smell of pine. Have a wonderful time there!
      Nina

  7. Juley says:

    Nina, I hope you are going to make it into Washington State while you’re in that area. It’s our home and in my humble opinion you are really missing out. Makes me so sad to see your visited states map with Washington still white. Western Washington is particularly beautiful. Love your blog!
    Juley

    • libertatemamo says:

      We’re gonna make it, although only for a taste this year. We’ve booked a week at Cape Dissapointment in early June. Can’t wait! We’re hoping to do some more extensive WA travels possibly next year? It’s definitely on our list.
      Nina

  8. Linda Zaworski says:

    We’ll be like ships passing in the night. Leaving the WONDERFUL Oregon coast and have reservations here for Monday.

  9. Ralph says:

    Nina, I just started reading your blog in January…and I’m hooked!. If I had my way…..you would write a DAILY blog! I get to live my fulltime dreams thru your wonderful writing(and photography). DW and I came thru Moab, SLC and west on I-84 to Portland a couple weeks ago. Unfortunately, we were in our car…but its an interesting drive. Like Juley above…we live in western washington ..about 30 miles north of Portland. I think you and Paul would love spending more time in washington…its gotta lot to enjoy. Take care, be safe and I’ll look forward to your blogs as you get closer to my neck of the woods.

    • libertatemamo says:

      So happy you found us and are along for the ride! Sounds like a neat trip you made. We’re pretty much following your exact route, except we’ll take the whole month to do it. Looking forward to it!
      Nina

  10. Mike says:

    When traveling the Gorge be sure to stop in at the Bonneville Fish Hatchery. It’s grounds are lovely, the hatchery’s visitor center is interesting Picnicking on the manicured grounds is encouraged. Next door is the Bonneville Dam and its Visitors Center where migrating salmon can be viewed.

  11. Ralph says:

    Whoops, just thought of something?! Make a note to yourself..when you travel west on I-84 in Oregon…between mp126 to mp120 on the left(south hillside}…there is a small herd of bighorn sheep that I’ve seen many times over the years…grazing happily in the sunshine!. Right now the grass is green in that part of the gorge.

  12. Hooray for green… rejoice! Glad you are enjoying it, as we are ours right now. Changes in scenery is a wonderful thing. Thanks for posting all the enticing westward photos, it’s helping inspiring us to keep heading that direction this summer ourselves. Hope to be meeting up with you guys soon!

    • libertatemamo says:

      Sure hope we get to meet you out here. We’ve avidly followed your travels forever (or so it seems)! It would be pretty darn awesome to finally meet you in person.
      Nina

  13. jil mohr says:

    we will be seeing green but in a different country…after the winter in the desert I can not wait…after we return we will going green via RV …

  14. Gaelyn says:

    There are a lot of nice camping in State Parks & National Forests in the PNW. Sure is a radical change in environment. Did I miss what the summer job is in Bandon?

    • libertatemamo says:

      We’re going to be lighthouse hosts on the coast. Same job we did last year. Loved it so much we signed up again.
      Nina

      • Ralph says:

        When I was in the U.S. Coast Guard(a LONG time ago!) I spent several months at Pt. Pinos Lighthouse,Pacific Grove,CA and Pescadero Pt. Lighthouse, north of Santa Cruz,CA.
        It’s amazing how SHORT people were when lighthouses were built. Lots of bending over …especially going up to the light!
        Also, I met my DW at Pt. Pinos. Lighthouse….but that’s a story in itself!

        • libertatemamo says:

          How very cool! During our hosting job we met quite a few ex-Coast Guards who’ve been on active lighthouse duty, some as far north as Alaska. Always fun to hear their stories. And yes, I’m fascinated by the folks that originally manned all these costal lights. A different time, for sure.
          Nina

  15. Lynda says:

    Three Island Crossing is a beautiful Idaho State Park that we have enjoyed on many occasions. The history of the Oregon trail takes on new meaning when faced with the dangerous Snake River crossing! Amazing…Lynda

    • libertatemamo says:

      It sure does Lynda. I love the visitor centre here too. They just do a splendid job of the whole place.
      Nina

  16. Sue says:

    Love your new cocktail spot, wish we were there. We wouldn’t have to wipe Lewis and Sasha off before we let them back in Beluga in that setting.! We’re still dealing with the dust and high winds of the desert so that grass looks mighty good to us.
    Hope Paul’s trip is speedy and productive and that you find interesting things to do while he’s gone, wink, wink!
    Sue

    • libertatemamo says:

      We thought of you guys while we were having our afternoon cup! The doggies would love it too. Shouldn’t be long before you see your own green.
      Nina
      P.s. and yes I’ll undoubtedly get up to something :)

  17. LuAnn says:

    We too are experiencing green all around, although not having near the fun that you two are! Give Paul our best as he heads back home and hope you “safely” complete your RV projects (for a gal who should NEVER run with scissors!). :)

    • libertatemamo says:

      Hehe…thanks Lu. I’ve got a sewing machine now…what could possibly go wrong?
      Nina

      • LuAnn says:

        Sharp needle, oh no! I can just see Paul coming home to find you at the sewing machine, emaciated from lack of food and water, somehow managing to stitch yourself to the machine, trapped for days. Watch those fingers! :)

  18. Liz Johns says:

    Found your blog last year…enjoying your adventures. Glad you’re enjoying one of “our” state parks in Idaho. I agree with another person above, if you haven’t stopped at the Bonneville Fish Hatchery it is a great “see”. Also a wonderful place for lunch in your rv. Liz-Boise, ID

  19. […] carts. Now, that’s what I call a hike! This year we picked up our first taste of the trail at Three Island Crossing State Park, ID and have followed it ever since (one day I’d love to follow the whole […]

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