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So I am thinking of taking most of my family (4 of us) to the pacific northwest.  Fly into seattle.  I would like to take a fishing trip for all of us (two boys 10 and 15, then the wife and I)  Would like to go after something more than just salmon, but that would be ok as well.  The boys love to go to the national parks and get their passport book stamped and take hikes and what not.  Does anyone have any other "must see" ideas or little out of the way places that most people don't go to.  We are not opposed to driving 5-8 or even more hours from seattle either.    Any advice is appreciated.

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@Dadof3 posted:

So I am thinking of taking most of my family (4 of us) to the pacific northwest.  Fly into seattle.  I would like to take a fishing trip for all of us (two boys 10 and 15, then the wife and I)  Would like to go after something more than just salmon, but that would be ok as well.  The boys love to go to the national parks and get their passport book stamped and take hikes and what not.  Does anyone have any other "must see" ideas or little out of the way places that most people don't go to.  We are not opposed to driving 5-8 or even more hours from seattle either.    Any advice is appreciated.

My wife and I have a bucket list of hiking trips in the queue, and the Pacific Northwest is among them...specifically the San Juan Islands which sits half-way between Seattle and Vancouver.   Neither of us has been in that region, and the hiking looks fantastic.  There is an abundance of State and National Parks in that area.  Our plans fell through this week (one of our grown sons wants to do it next year), but the San Juan Islands remain at the top of our list.  If you go, please let me know what you think.   

Last edited by fenwaysouth

A ferry trip to Orcas Island in the San Juan Islands is amazing. You may see some Orcas along the way. The Olympic peninsula is beautiful. and there is a beautiful beach on the Pacific coast near a town called LaPush. It's amazing. Off the beaten track but one of my favorite places ever. Vancouver is also a wonderful place.

Couple years ago we flew into Seattle, saw the Mariners play the Angels that night with Ohtani, a RCAF flyover and fireworks.* We drove across the border to Vancouver after the game. Rented an AirBnB by the beach for a couple days and toured the city including UBC, whose anthropology dept is famous. Looks like they have a pretty spectacular dinosaur exhibit right now:  https://vancouversun.com/news/...pacific-museum-earth

One of the days we toured Vancouver Harbour by boat. We grabbed sandwiches from the awesome food hub/public market next to the boat rental at Granville Island. A brief course will get you a captains license on the spot. Being on the water for a few hours was a great way to see the city and coast. You could also rent bikes or hike in Stanley Park.

We then ferried with our car out to Vancouver Island, another AirBnB for a couple days. I loved Butchart Gardens. We had high tea there - reservations fill quickly but they do take walk-ins.  We found a local business about an hour north of where we were staying - husband and wife took us out on their boat: our boys wakeboarded and learned to wakesurf.  It was awesome. Lake like glass and super long, perfect for watersports. We're not fisherman but you could for sure find someone with a fishing boat to take you out around Vancouver Island.

We took the ferry back from Vancouver Island to Port Angeles WA and drove down to Seattle.

It was a great experience. Highly recommend.

*whoever does marketing for the Mariners deserves a raise

Last edited by SpeedDemon
@Dadof3 posted:

Any idea if a passport is required to get into Canada?

Yes! A passport is required. The Sportfishing in the area is not the best (IMO) but others may have a different opinion. Instead of fishing you might consider a sailing in the sound, it's gorgeous (I'm sure there are tours). I'm 9 hours away in the Montana flathead valley (Glacier National Park) It's a haul, but the park and the Follow the Sun road are amazing. Have fun, the PNW is amazing!  

@JucoDad posted:

Yes! A passport is required. The Sportfishing in the area is not the best (IMO) but others may have a different opinion. Instead of fishing you might consider a sailing in the sound, it's gorgeous (I'm sure there are tours). I'm 9 hours away in the Montana flathead valley (Glacier National Park) It's a haul, but the park and the Follow the Sun road are amazing. Have fun, the PNW is amazing!  

I love going to the sun road.  Loved picking the huckleberries.  Yummy.

I'm not a fisherman so won't be able to give many suggestions on that. Here are some suggestions for driving loops to investigate hikes you may want to do.



If you will be in Seattle for a few days there is the Gum Wall, The Troll under the bridge. and a fun adventure could be to drive or take ferry from downtown (its passenger only) to Alki then grab some scooters or walk  up to the beach area with food and beach and the west coast Statue of Liberty.

You may also want to see what Seafair events are going on that you might be interested in: https://www.seafair.org/sfw?ga...jkaEeIxoCoxkQAvD_BwE



If you want to take in a non Mariners game check the schedules for Bellingham Bells, Port Angeles Lefties and Victoria HarbourCats. These are all part of WCL there is also a few smaller teams, Fishsticks and Redmond Dudes come to mind. And the Mariners minor league team AguaSox in Everett.



For getting out and about there is https://www.cascadeloop.com/ which takes you east over mountains and into the high desert then back around. Winthrop (cowboy themed) and Leavonworth (Bavarian theme) are a bit touristy but can be fun to walk through.



Its not really a hike but https://www.snoqualmiefalls.com/ can be a nice stop just out of the city. The falls won't be as impressive as the picture shows.



There is also Olympic Mountain Loop https://olympicpeninsula.org/d...op/top-15-loop-sees/

Crescent lake can be a nice quick stop for a swim. Because of the minerals in the lake there is no algae so you can see the bottom. Kinda eerie where its deep. I doubt your family is big Twilight fans so Forks may not draw you in but the rain forests have great hikes, sadly the rainy season is winter time so they will be a bit dry right now. Hurricane Ridged is a can't miss stop.

You could use ferries to make it one giant loop going into CA in the process.

Mentioned before Whistler is great in the summer and the scenery driving there is spectacular.

Be sure to top off just before you do into Canada that price per liter adds up quick.

Its a smidge over your driving limit but heading south Crater Lake is a site to see and you can knock off one of the places on Johnny Cash's "I've been everywhere".  There are lava tubes to explore in Bend OR where the WCL Elks play.

A warning about Crater lake. It gets busy like 3 mile backup to get in busy. I'd plan to get inline early if you want to do ferry to island. Getting there about 1-2 hours before park closes can work to it you aren't looking to do the ferry and just want to walk around rim some. On opposite side you can walk down to swim in the deepest lake in the US.

If you head that way hikes in Portland area are not to be missed. So many falls... https://www.travelportland.com...ion/multnomah-falls/

There are a few punch bowls you can hike to for a rewarding swim at the end here is one: https://www.oregonhikers.org/f...unch_Bowl_Falls_Hike  I'd recommend bringing some water socks or the like if you do go in water. Its very rocky for tender feet. Park rules say no jumping off the falls. I'd recommend following that rule. I've seen rangers hiding waiting for people to jump so they can fine them.

The drive on Rte 30 along the Columbia River getting to the hikes east of Portland is very nice as well.



Portland also has WCL team The Pickles.

Enjoy your trip. PNW is a great place for outdoor fun.

Good recommendations above. My wife's best friend lives in Seattle and I have been there multiple times as well as the San Juan Islands three times, Vancouver, fishing off Vancouver Island, Victoria, and elsewhere around the area.

Musts:

- Mariners game....come on,  one of the best stadiums in the US and this is a baseball site. Plus the Mariners are kicking it this year.

- Space Needle

- Seattle underground tour, tons of great Asian restaurants, downtown fish market, and just walking around down town. (1 day)

It gets a bit complicated depending if you want to go into Canada.

Option 1

- San Juan Islands and Friday harbor, go up to Anacortes and take a caron the ferry and spend 2-3 days out there. I would recommend taking a Kayak trip and whale watching over fishing. The challenge is there is no easy way right now to get to Victoria from the San Juan Islands. If you have enough time you could get up to Vancouver and spend a couple of days there. One of the great cities of the West.

Option 2

- Trip to Victoria via Whidbey Island to Port Townsend to Port Angeles and take the ferry from Port Angeles over to Victoria. Very European city, your wife will love it. Butchart gardens is a must. Whidbey has great shops, art, etc. Not sure how the kids will like it, but your wife will love it.

I would skip the Olympic peninsula, it is very interesting, but distances are great and weather is unpredictable. I would not do this on my first trip.

If fishing is your thing then drive up to Tofino and spend 3-4 days up there and take some fishing charters. One of the great salmon fishing spots in the world and an incredible trip, but it almost becomes singular getting there and out. Spectacular scenery.

Feel free to send me an IM and I can give you some more advice depending on you schedule, days, and timing.

Cheers.

BOF

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