“Explore a narrow earthen ribbon protecting rich agricultural land from the unpredictable currents and water levels of the Fraser River…,” so says the front of the park brochure.
Goodness. I am not even sure I should share this spot. I hesitate because I really have barely been there. I’m posting because I did enjoy the brief interlude that was my visit.
While running errands and visiting people in Bellingham and up into Canada, my dad and I took a detour and stumbled on the Matsqui Trail Regional Park. It is a 13.6 km (8.16 miles) shared trail along the Fraser River. We stopped at the Page Road Trailhead, wandered a very short distance along the hiking trail there and paused to take a selfie with river.
We then drove, yes drove, to the Mission Bridge section, which is 6.5 km (3.9 miles) from Page Road. There we stopped (and stayed in the car) long enough to watch a tug pull a barge under the bridge.
According to the very informative brochure I picked up at the trailhead, the Matsqui Trail is a part of the Trans Canada Trail, “which links communities and recreation corridors across the nation.”
Both spots along the Matsqui Trail were very scenic. Hopefully I’ll be able to go back again sometime.
With family in Bellingham, Washington, drive up I-5 from Portland is a well-driven stretch of road for me. Toward the end of the drive, in the northwest corner of Washington, is Lake Samish. Throughout the summer the lake sparkles through the evergreens on the western side of the interstate. Even in dreary weather the dark blue, sometimes almost black, water glimmers for those looking.
Tucked away among the evergreens and mountains, out of sight of the highway, just outside Bellingham are the houses, communities and parks of Samish Lake. In the mornings the setting is often calm, cool and peaceful, even in mid July. In the warm afternoons and evenings, the Samish Park on the north end of the lake beckons the warm and weary to take a dip at its little swimming beach.
I have been one of those warm and weary ones and have memories of swimming there with my sister and cousin back in the day when my uncle lived out in the hills. His trailer sat parked in a small enclave of other trailers just up the road from the lake. In a community vibrant with walkers, firemen who wave at passers by, boaters and fishers, it was almost like he and my cousin were living the vacationer’s life.
If you venture off I-5 at either exits 242 or 246, the lake is just a short drive away. The park is open from sunrise to sunset and the swimming area and changing house are well marked.