In which Willy embarks on a fabulous wilderness adventure

Willy has been looking forward to his adventure for months.

He's been accumulating gear for months: workshirts, work jeans, work gloves.

Can you spot the theme?

The Northwest Youth Corps is a descendant of President Theodore Franklin D. Roosevelt's Civilian Conservation Corps, which was created during the Great Depression to put young men to work, building trails, bridges, planting trees, and doing other valuable tasks for the good of the nation. The modern Youth Corps does similar work, hired by the Forest Service and private logging companies to build trails, clear fuel undergrowth to minimize forest fire damage, and whatever else needs to be done.

Willy will be gone 5 weeks, with only a few weekend returns to civilization.

I am so jealous.

We drove over Stevens Pass through the sunshine.

We stopped for lunch at one of Jim's favorite spot.
Willy was almost too excited to eat, but a vanilla shake can be a mighty temptation.

We finally got to the orientation camp. The staff looks a like a steady, serious, upstanding group.
Willy and the other kids listened attentively to the orientation talk...
...and nearby, the tents waited for the teams to put everything together.
Within 45 minutes, the kids were eagerly learning about their tasks and each other, and Jim and I got into our truck and waved goodbye.

We took the "scenic way" home, with a stop in Leavenworth, the faux-Bavarian tourist village in the mountains. I took a few photos, just for Lytha. I'm pretty sure that she doesn't see a lot of those mondo-SUV's in a real German village.

This building has paintings of Aesop's fables on the side, for no apparent reason.

Down in the village square, the band was full of OOM-PAH.

Of course, I had to take a photo of the only horse in town. I liked that they attached a "tip jar" to the horse's harness.

It was too hot outside to spend a long time browsing the shops, even though we'd parked the dogs in the shade, but we did explore our favorite

hat shop!

We stopped at a fruit stand outside of Leavenworth, and bought a sweet watermelon to take home.

The nice lady at the fruit stand called Jim "Pops", which totally cracked me up. She also told us about a great place to get into Nasen Creek, so we went there.

Luna loves wading.

Mimsy doesn't like to get her feet wet, so she watched Jim walk out on the log bridge
...and then followed him.

We threw her in the cool water and laughed.
We made another stop on the way back down the mountain: the Deception Falls trail.
It's so pretty, and much cooler in the woods than it was out on the sunny creek.

The Tye River was fast and cold, and beautiful. We enjoyed the little walk on the trail.
And then,
we came home to our own little Farm.

Life is good.


  1. I can hardly wait to hear about Willy's adventures. I think it was FDR who started the CCC. Your uncles, Don and Bud were both in the corps. In fact, that is where Don Met Mary (his future wife). The crew he was in was billeted at her family's farm. Mom

  2. Thanks for catching the "wrong wRoosevelt" error, Mom! I didn't know about my uncles. Cool.

  3. Lucky, lucky Willy -- I hope he has a great time.

  4. Exactly what I needed! Go Willy!!
    The SUV in front of the Aesopian 'Bavaraian' house (hotel? restaurant?) had me rolling. Let me correct that. It had me, Brian and Steve rolling. I could hear the Omm Pah, loved the mining car, and boy did I need to wade in that creek.

  5. What a great opportunity for Willy--being in the outdoors, helping out, and gaining some skills! Hope he has fun!
    You return trip looks like a relaxing little get-away. I feel cooler just looking at those feet in the creek.

  6. Sounds like a great thing for Willy to do. Please keep us updated.

  7. what great timing you have. just this week my mom emailed me about our future trip to seattle. she wanted to know if we could all book a hotel in leavenworth for 4 days in january. my parents *love* leavenworth, esp. at christmas. well, i got all excited thinking my man should really see it, but when i asked him he said no. like oh please god no, no, no!!! *lol*

    then he said "maximum: ONE day."

    he seems pretty adversive to the idea, which i'd heard before: real germans stay away from leavenworth, but americans and people learning german love it!

    we'll see if we end up there. now to show him your blog!


  8. Nothing like a good oom-pah band (and a beer) to raise one's spirits (pun intended)!

    Good luck to Willy!

  9. oops, i think that should be adverse, not adversive. my english is just vanishing.

  10. Oh, what a fun trip! You have taught Willie well - there's no such thing as too many socks. Beautiful detours on the way home.

  11. I had a friend in high school do it one summer and man she came back rough, tough and muscled up like a Mack truck!

    Your dogs are just too cute!

  12. Fabulous indeed! Willy already has a lot of experience being part of a crew, so he should thrive there.


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