July 31 – August 3, 2015
Third time’s a charm. We had our third stop at a Les Schwab Tire in the last month to repair a tire as we were headed from Seattle to Whidbey Island. I always check the tire pressure on the trailer before traveling and noticed our left front tire was about 10 psi under what it should have been. I carefully inspected the tire and found the culprit–a nail deeply embedded in the tread. It was a slow leak, only losing 10 psi over two nights, so I added some air with our portable air compressor and we drove to a Les Schwab en route to Whidbey. The tire guys were quick and had it repaired in under an hour at no charge. Lesson learned–always check the trailer tire pressure before traveling. It could easily have turned into a blowout on the highway and caused all kinds of damage.
Whidbey Island is about 2.5 hours from Seattle if you drive north and take the bridge. I’m told you can get there faster from Seattle by taking the ferry to the southern end of the island, but only if you get right on the ferry. Sometimes the line to get a spot on the ferry can take several hours. Whidbey is a large island with sweeping views of Puget Sound, beaches, forests, small towns, a Naval Air Station, and civil defense guns guarding the passage to Seattle.
We stayed in the Oak Harbor Beach RV park about a mile from our good friends from Okinawa, Tawnie and James. They were wonderful hosts and we spent most of our time hanging out with them at their home. The kids loved running around with Ben, a huge 8-month old St. Bernard. How funny to see a puppy so big!
One of our favorite parts of Whidbey was visiting Fort Casey. It’s a historic site now, but was originally constructed as a civil defense battery to protect the Seattle Port during the Spanish American war in the 1890s. The Spanish never made it there, so the guns remained unbloodied, but the fort stayed in operation through World War II. The kids had a blast looking over the huge guns (16-inch I believe) and exploring the tunnels and bunkers under the fort.
Then we took a ferry ride just for the fun of it from Whidbey over to the other side of the Puget. The line of cars to get on the ferry was several hours long, but we just parked and walked on, which was no wait at all. The ride across the sound was about 30 minutes, then we walked around Port Townsend. After an hour or so, we hopped on the ferry for the ride back to Whidbey.