Roadtrip: Mixing Wilderness & City in the Pacific Northwest

Months after our last trip I am finally finding the time to write and share our experiences in the Pacific Northwest. In a nutshell, we did a Pacific Northwest road trip with stops including Redwood National Park, Portland, Mount Hood, and Crater Lake National Park. The trip was full of winding roads, Redwood trees, and beautiful coastal views. This post is an overview of our entire trip, and future posts will cover more details and specifics. Enjoy the journey… ๐Ÿ™‚

Photo taken in California, en route to Redwood National Park.

Photo taken in California, en route to Redwood National Park

After I accepted a new job offer, we wanted to squeeze one last trip in before getting back to the grind.ย We planned this trip in about a weeks time, and only two weeks ย in advance. It’s safe to say we’re becoming masters of the art of trip planning; the itinerary is key. ย ๐Ÿ™‚

Pacific NW Roadtrip

Image courtesy of Google Maps,

We don’t like staying in one place for too long, and wanted to see as much as possible. We started out in San Francisco doing some typical tourist things like checking out Fisherman’s Wharf, seafood bisque, Pier 39, and the Golden Gate Bridge.


After taking some photos at Golden Gate, we headed north to Point Reyes National Seashore where we had our first night of backcountry camping. It was only about a mile hike uphill to our campsite, but is was a serene spot with an elevated view over the ocean.

We then traveled up to Redwood National Park where we spent two nights exploring the park. One night we spent on a campground, the other in the backcountry where we found an off-the-map trail that lead us through brush, down to the beautiful shore.


Pacific Ocean off of Redwood National Park

From Cali, we headed further north to Oregon. After a night at the Oregon Dunes, hours of driving through beautiful coastal towns and endless miles of farmland, we made it to Portland. We got comfortable switching gears to city life and explored some breweries and other sites. My absolute favorite spot was the International Rose Test Garden, just beautiful. After indulging in Voodoo Donut, we headed to Mt. Hood for two nights in the wilderness that we’ll never forget.


View of Mt. Hood from Yocum RIdge

After surviving the Mt. Hood wilderness, we were ready to bring things down a notch. Our next stop was Crater Lake National Park, with a view and a history worth learning about. We spent two nights there winding down and also caught a glimpse of some PCT hikers before heading back to San Francisco.

Crater Lake National Park

Crater Lake National Park

Stay tuned for more details about our trip and backcountry experiences.

Safe travels. ๐Ÿ™‚


5 thoughts on “Roadtrip: Mixing Wilderness & City in the Pacific Northwest

  1. So timely of you to write these reports. My wife and I are considering a trip probably late April, that is almost identical, except that we will be starting and ending in Seattle. Looks you had a great trip, can’t wait to read the rest, especially the Redwoods backpack you did!

    • Hey swanny, thanks for commenting and sharing! Funny you’re starting in Seattle because we almost took an impromptu drive there with an extra day we had. Our redwoods “backpack” wasn’t much of one, just under a mile uphill hike to the campsite. The real backpacking was done at Mt. Hood with two nights in the wilderness. Can’t wait to write about it ๐Ÿ™‚

      Are you considering Mt. Hood as well?

      • Any night away from the car is backpacking, doesn’t matter how long or short the hike in was! ๐Ÿ™‚

        We will probably skip out on Mt Hood most likely, may drive through to Hood River on the way home possibly. It’s a short enough drive from Seattle that we can head there on a non-vacation type weekend luckily.

        Can’t wait to read about the rest of the trip!

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