After spending the weekend at Ocean Park for our family reunion, we packed up the ole Arctic Fox trailer and headed across the Columbia to Fort Stevens State Park. We have wanted to camp here for a long time but never made reservations early enough. This year I found a space available from Monday through Thursday that would fill the gap between our planned weekend camping spots. The 3,700 acre park has nine miles of bicycle trails, six miles of hiking trails, as well as miles of beach, so there is always plenty to do and explore. Kevin & Kyle would have no problem running the beach each day to get their 5 to 6 miles in for Cross Country pre-season practice.
We visited the historic military area which has a museum as well as the concrete bunkers built as military fortifications to guard the mouth of the Columbia River. The original earthwork fortifications were build during the Civil War were replaced by concrete structures and served as an active military base until the end of World War II. The kids enjoy exploring the dark interiors of the huge bunkers and posing next to the large guns.
We had great weather while at Fort Stevens! Not only did it not rain (much) on us, one evening the sky was not overcast at all and we had a great sunset. I drove back to the beach to get some photos of the 1904 shipwreck of the Peter Iredale with the setting sun. I got what I think are some fantastic shots.
We also signed up for the ranger-led kayak session on Coffenbury Lake. The rangers explained the history of Fort Stevens as we paddled around the lake early in the morning. The kids enjoyed themselves thoroughly. I really think we need to buy a couple of kayaks for the family to use on the Columbia River around home as well as when we are out camping.
Before we knew it our time at Fort Stevens was over and it was time to hook up the trailer and head toward warmer weather to finish out our vacation near Mount Rainier.