2022 in Review: We Moved to Washington!
Written by Brian Callender | Photography by Julie Boyd
Surprise! If you didn’t know already, we packed up our Bay Area apartment at the end of 2021 and moved to Washington! This was a move that had been in the making for a few years now, but took some time for me to convince Julie 🙂 We made two hiking based trips to Washington in 2021 and those visits helped cement the decision to move to Washington, once an opportunity presented itself. Our thoughts were sometime in the summer of 2022.
Late in 2021, I found a job opportunity based in Seattle that would expedite our timeline to move to Washington, putting us here by the end of December. Julie, looking for a career change, was on board and thankfully was able to find a new job quickly. It was a whirlwind, but we quickly found ourselves on the road, driving everything we could squeeze into our Jeep (and donating a lot of things we hadn’t properly accounted for with the movers) and headed to our new home.
2022 was one of our busiest years on record and also a year in which we celebrated two milestones. Here is a recap of the year that was!
We arrived in Washington on December 31st and found our new rental home in the town of Bothell the next day. It was icy from a recent storm and our Jeep slid out of the driveway but thankfully settled in the street and did not crash into the car parked just across the street. Later that day, we excitedly braved the crowds at Snoqualmie Falls to see them covered in snow.
After getting settled into our new place, we enjoyed our first three hikes as Washingtonians with trips to Wallace Falls, a snowshoe adventure at Mount Rainier, and Heybrook Lookout.
Our highlight of the month and only hike was a snowshoe trip to Mount Baker. We had visited the area in 2021, when we hiked the Chain Lakes Loop, and were excited to see everything in a fresh coat of snow. The views from Artist Point are some of the finest in the state of Washington.
In March, we checked off two popular, short hikes off our list with visits to Rattlesnake Ledge and Twin Falls. The latter hike we shared with Julie’s mom who came to visit us in our new home.
Our first trip out to the Olympic Coast was met unsurprisingly by a weekend filled with rain. We were able to squeeze a short hike in to Cascade Falls that was relatively dry. The second day was spent getting thoroughly rained on in the Hoh Rainforest. I suppose we should not have been surprised!
Later in the month, we took another snowshoe hike, this time to Skyline Lake. That hike was particularly memorable not just for the scenery, but also because I started feeling a scratchy throat later and ended up coming down with Covid.
May marked our second trip to Olympic National Park, this time visiting a rainy Sol Duc Falls. Our hike the next morning to Mount Storm King was rain-free and had some incredible views of Lake Crescent. As we waited for the snow to slowly melt out, we added a few more hikes to the month including a return to Wallace Falls, a birthday trip to Lake 22, and Heather Lake.
In June, we made our first trip back home to Southern California and caught up with family. I met up with some old friends I hadn’t seen in years and we spent an afternoon at Julie’s favorite place, the beach!
With improving weather conditions, we hit the road for more adventures. A trip down the coast marked our first time together in Astoria where we felt nostalgic with all things The Goonies. After a night in Portland, we embarked on waterfall fest stopping to see/hike: Multnomah Falls, Spirit Falls, Panther Creek Falls, Falls Creek Falls and Lewis River Falls. It was a great way to celebrate our 10 year dating anniversary!
Before the month was out, we made our first trip to a fully thawed out lake and our second time at the popular, Colchuck Lake.
Julie’s parents made the drive up to visit and we spent 4th of July weekend showing them around our new home state. Our first time visiting Sunrise in Mount Rainier National Park as residents of the state, saw the mountain wasn’t quite ready to shed it’s winter coat. We also crossed a new waterfall hike off our list, a short walk to Franklin Falls.
Our month picked up steam from there with a short hike to Barclay Lake and a much tougher hike to Lake Serene. We visited our second fire lookout of the year, Mount Rainier’s Fremont Lookout and stayed to enjoy the Milky Way’s arrival.
As July came to a close, we celebrated our 5th wedding anniversary with what has quickly become an annual tradition: a road trip! After having to cancel our plans in 2022, we were ecstatic to finally make it to Glacier National Park, our 19th National Park. With finished July off with a flurry, hiking Hidden Lake Overlook, Cracker Lake, and Iceberg Lake in successive days.
We flipped the calendar over to August, took one day off to rest, and then embarked on our largest and most strenuous hike of the year, Swiftcurrent Mountain Lookout. The lookout is the highest point that can be accessed by trail in Glacier National Park and it was quite the adventure! We were thoroughly exhausted after the hike but two days later were back on the trails again, this time in Waterton National Park just across the border in Canada. Crypt Lake was a beautiful and crazy adventure and our last hike of the trip, one on very tired legs.
By the time we returned from our trip, we had officially closed on our very first house! It was an exciting and stressful time as we became homeowners and we took the rest of the month off from hiking while we worked to get settled in our new place.
After some much needed rest for our tired legs, we were back hiking at the beginning of the month. We hiked to Tolmie Peak, on perhaps the only summer day of the year where the weather was not clear, and were unfortunately skunked on any of the famous views of Rainier from the lookout.
Washington had a particularly rough fire season, but we still managed to squeeze in a couple of additional hikes to bucket list worthy destinations. I had been wanting to hike to Snow and Gem Lakes since before we decided to move to Washington and the hike, though very busy, did not disappoint. But perhaps our best view of the year came from the hike to Winchester Mountain, yet another fire lookout. It was without question the WORST forest service road we had ever driven in our lives (and maybe ever will?) even with a 4WD Jeep, but we made it and the views were incredible!
If Snow Lake was a long time bucket list hike, Hidden Lake, which we attempted the first weekend in October was perhaps even higher on that list. We got a later than planned start and the hike absolutely kicked our butts. With the sun setting, we were forced to call it without making it all the way to our final destination. I was able to make a last minute push to a viewpoint of the lake, but the famous lookout was out of reach.
Fall in Washington is an event that everyone in the state (or so it seems on any given weekend) participates in, so we were back on the trails the following weekends. First visiting Crater Lake (no, not the Oregon one) and then returning to Blue Lake the next weekend with Julie’s parents who returned for their second visit of the year. We were so happy to get to show them one of our favorite destinations in the state, North Cascades National Park.
The first snow arrived later than we have heard is normal, and we decided to make one final trip to the North Cascades to soak it in. Our second visit to Maple Pass was spectacular and we were treated to some of the most incredible clouds as we hiked.
At the end of the month, Julie went to visit her friends in the Bay Area where they enjoyed a photography weekend in Yosemite. While she was gone, I made a return hike to a snowy Snow Lake.
Our third trip to Olympic National Park and second out to the coast kicked off our month of November. We explored three different beaches and had our first non-rainy visit to the Hoh Rainforest. I also enjoyed one of the best sunrises of the year, from a gas station parking lot.
It was an otherwise quiet month for hiking, but we visited family for Thanksgiving and made a trip out to see an arch down at the beach. Before the month was out, we received our first snow of the year in our new home. This was and will always be a pretty big deal for these Southern California kids.
To close out the year, we made a return hike to Franklin Falls, this time with the trail covered in snow. This hike is popular year round but especially magical with snow!
We also took our first foray into skiing, with a lesson at Crystal Mountain Resort. I had mixed results, but Julie did well and we plan to take additional lessons in 2023 to see if it’s something we can become halfway decent at.
Finishing up the year, we returned home to Southern California for Christmas and promptly had an unintentional adventure. We decided to be good humans and voluntarily gate-checked our carry on bags to help the airline out. After our flight was cancelled due to mechanical issues, we hopped on a flight to San Diego instead of waiting around to be rebooked to Orange County. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to grab our bags and with weather issues the next day (Seattle had some bad ice storms) our bags were very much delayed. We learned a valuable lesson: always keep your bags with you and only check them if you absolutely have to. My bag arrived on Christmas day (3 days later) and Julie’s on the following Tuesday (5 days later) back home in Seattle.
Looking back, 2022 was one of the busiest of our 10 years together! We moved twice in the same year, including purchasing our very first home. Our list of hikes for the year was long and while we didn’t get to check them all off the list, we accomplished a lot! The hiking plans for 2023 and perhaps some of our biggest yet and I’m so excited to see where the year takes us. Bound to Explore took a bit of a backseat for us in 2022 and we have SO much blog content to share as we get caught up. Thanks for following along with us and cheers to the year ahead!